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Get $5,000 seed funding and be the next INCUBATE success story

Applications are closed!

Sign up for our newsletter or follow us on Facebook to be notified about applications and entrepreneur events, including Demo Day for the successful applicants. Register your interest in Class 11 now!


Register for PROTO – Startup Development Program

Not ready for the accelerator but have a startup idea? Register your interest for Proto. Open to all students. Register here.

Attend an Info Session

We highly recommend interested applicants to attend an info session where you find out:

  • What you need to do to get in the program
  • How the program can help you and your startup
  • And you get to ask all the questions you want

Available Info session dates:

  • Tuesday 20 September, 1-3pm – Click to Register (finished)
  • Monday 24 October, 1-3pm – Click to Register (finished)

We’re Looking For

Global-thinking, talented and motivated students, researchers and alumni.

INCUBATE will fund up to eight high-potential startup teams. This means that your business idea will help solve a problem, be a scalable solution and will have a big impact on your target market. You will be required to develop your idea into a first-version product or platform, and aim to attract your  first customers within the 3-month incubation period – all in time to pitch at our Demo Day.

Check out our previous startups for an idea of what we have funded in the past and remember: the crazier your idea, the better. Both early-stage and later-stage startups are welcome to apply.

Applicants will ideally be able to define:

  • The problem you are trying to solve
  • The technology or process you will use to solve this problem
  • Who you think your customers will be
  • The competition  and market size, in Australia and around the world
  • How you will go-to-market and what you will achieve in the 3 month incubation period

Startups accepted into the INCUBATE will will receive:

  • $5,000 seed funding*
  • Working space on campus over the 14 weeks
  • Internet, printing, office resources and use of University of Sydney Union meeting rooms
  • Mentoring, advice and guidance from some of Australia’s most experienced mentors
  • Workshops by leading industry advisors and innovators
  • Access to early stage business advise including legal, Intellectual Property, tax and grants areas

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More information about the 3 month incubation period here.


  1. Applications close date on Monday 12th June @ 11:59pm, Sydney time
  2. Startups will be notified by Tuesday 20th June if they have received an interview
  3. Interviews will be held on Tuesday 27 & Wednesday 28 June
  4. Selected startups will be notified by Friday 30 June or earlier
  5. Startups selected will have to attend our Pre-Program Induction Days on 4 & 5 July
  6. INCUBATE accelerator program begins on July 10, startups are expected to attend both induction days.
  7. All startups are expected to work at the INCUBATE Hub over the accelerator program from July to October. 
  8. Demo Day (pitch night) is planned for an evening at the end of the program in late October, date to be confirmed later (TBC)

Applicant Eligibility Criteria

To apply for the INCUBATE Program, at least one startup team-member must:

  • Be currently enrolled at Sydney University or
  • Be a current researcher or staff at Sydney University or
  • Be alumnus of Sydney University


  • Startups will be considered on a case by case basis if they have received more than $100,000 in funding
  • If you are unsure about your business idea or commitment requirements, get in touch

Applications Assessment

All applications will be judged by our mentor panel of experienced business leaders and entrepreneurs, all of whom have either started their own business or have funded a successful startup business. Read our FAQ.

Stages in the judging process:

  1. Screening: applicants will be screened online by the mentor panel and selected for interview based on responses to the questions in the application form
  2. Interview: finalists will be invited to a 15-minute interview to discuss their startups and team
  3. INCUBATE startups selected

Final Application Instructions

  • We use a new system for Class 10 applications, please select “Unincorporated” or “Other” when entering your startup company name. If you have more questions, Get in touch
  • Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest INCUBATE information.

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Other Terms and Conditions of the INCUBATE Program

  • *We do not take equity in your startup. Instead, Incubate will take an advisory fee of any monetary investment your startup receives. These funds will assist the Incubate program to be become self-sustaining. Please get in touch for further details. Government grants are not included in the investment criteria.
  • Participating Startups will sign an agreement with the University of Sydney Union to be eligible to work in the Incubate Hub and receive the Business Grant/Seed Funding. 
  • Any intellectual property created by INCUBATE participants will belong to the individual or team involved – INCUBATE and the University of Sydney Union want to create an environment where participants are free to innovate, create and invent.
  • All participants are expected to acknowledge that their involvement of the ‘INCUBATE’ program, with use of our logo on all public facing materials
  • All participants are expected to provide a report and breakdown of how the seed funding is used – there are no restrictions in how the teams use their funding but guidance and recommendations will be made by the Incubate Team.
  • Startups are required to provide feedback on the Program and their experiences at the end of the incubation period.
  • All participants must independently decide what information to share with Incubate program, its outside advisors, or any other third party.
  • All participants agree to periodic reviews by the Incubate Management Team – we want startups who are committed to their idea and to each other, if your team is not making progress we have the option to end your participation in the program and to open your space to another team.
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