The Lightning Lab is the first digital accelerator programme in New Zealand and will supercharge ten digital startups within a network of 100 mentors and an intensive 12-week pathway to prove, build and launch their businesses into market.
Lightning Lab puts up to $18,000 of seed investment into elite teams of startup entrepreneurs and pushes them to make their business idea fly within three months, with support from a set of dedicated support technical and business interns, and mentorship from leading entrepreneurs and business experts from around New Zealand.
The programme is open to any team of startup founders across New Zealand and will run early 2013. Applications closed in early December 2012. The top ten applicants will be selected by the founding investor group, all active and high-profile angel investors.
MBIE sponsors the programme that is also backed by private investors.
Graham Smith, Acting Deputy Chief Executive Business Innovation and Investment at MBIE’s Science and Innovation Group says investing in Lightning Lab complements MBIE's support for initiatives such as Kiwi Landing Pad in San Francisco and sponsoring entrepreneurs to MIT in Boston.
“The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment is supporting this initiative because we want to grow the number of innovation-based entrepreneurs in New Zealand. Lighting Lab will help fast track New Zealand’s entrepreneurial talent and give them better opportunities to succeed.”