Vodafone wants WM businesses applying to new social innovation fund
Telecoms giant Vodafone is inviting innovative West Midlands businesses to apply for its new UK social innovation fund.
Vodafone Techstarter supports start-ups and early-stage ventures developing innovative technology solutions with social purpose – ideas that can harness the power of technology, connectivity and innovation to improve health, education, environmental protection or social mobility.
In addition to financial awards, winners will benefit from access to industry and technology expertise from Vodafone and the Social Tech Trust, enabling them to take their innovations from prototype to market readiness. This will include coaching, commercial development support, mentorship, investment and partnership advice, with additional bespoke elements depending on their requirements.
The Vodafone Techstarter social innovation award fund for 2018 is £300,000 to be distributed as follows:
- For profit Vodafone Techstarter Award– four winners will each receive £35,000 and a 12-month programme of support and value-in-kind. Supported by Vodafone UK.
- Not for profit Vodafone Techstarter Award– four winners will each receive £35,000 and a 12-month programme of support and value-in-kind. Supported by the Vodafone Foundation (UK registered charity number 1089625).
- Vodafone Techstarter Champion’s Award – two winners, voted by Vodafone employees, will each receive £10,000
Vodafone Techstarter is open to UK-based inventors, innovators, charities, social enterprises, businesses and entrepreneurs, with prototype ideas. All applications must have a clearly defined social purpose.
Applications can be submitted here. Entries need to be in by 23 October 2018.
Michele Metcalfe, Vodafone UK’s Head of West Midlands Region, said: “We know there are many organisations and individuals across the West Midlands who are developing innovative technology solutions with a social purpose. Vodafone Techstarter is an exciting opportunity that could help them to take their idea to the next level.”
Judging will take place in December with finalists revealed in January 2019. Winners will be announced at an awards event in London in February 2019.