A NSW Government website

Social Impact Pre-Accelerator Program


Budding entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to take the first step in developing a start-up, with applications now open for four pre-accelerators. Programs are designed to support founders from diverse backgrounds and social impact driven startups.

The programs will support under-represented groups entering the innovation ecosystem, including women and people with diverse backgrounds. Programs will be delivered by Startmate, I2N (University of Newcastle), iAccelerate (University of Wollongong) and UNSW Founders (University of NSW).

60 participants will take part in the pre-accelerators, running across Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong. Participants will be early in their entrepreneurship journey, where they have a startup concept formed however are unsure how to translate their idea into a business. The pre- accelerators syllabus will include modules around fundamental business and entrepreneurial mindset, supporting the participant in developing and validating their idea. Formal education will be complemented with bespoke coaching and mentoring. Participants will have the opportunity to learn, whilst forming networks that may support them in their future endeavours.

The pre-accelerator providers will manage the application process for participants, with the programs to be delivered over the coming months and into next year.

Pre-accelerator providers

StartmateExternal Link – Tech Central Startmate will deliver a 10-week program for 20 participants who will be mentored by Startmate alumni that currently run ventures in under-represented sectors including disability and mental health.

I2N (University of Newcastle)External Link

I2N will deliver a 10-week program for 10-15 participants.
The pre-accelerator is aimed at female founders to boost the number of female-led businesses in the regional ecosystem.

iAccelerate (University of Wollongong)External Link

iAccelerate will deliver a 12-week program for 10-15 entrepreneurs looking to deliver social impact.
Post completion of the pre-accelerator, participants will be offered a nine-month residency with access to University of Wollongong’s facilities.

UNSW Founders (University of NSW) - WestmeadExternal Link

UNSW Founders will deliver a 10-week program, called Impact-X, for 10 participants.
The pre-accelerator is aimed at founders looking to address an underrepresented healthcare issue, a global unmet medical need, or a healthcare solution for marginalised groups.


Please contact Investment NSW if you have any questions.