"I'm, stunned, to tell you the truth. This is what Asia really needs. I'm so glad that AIA's being such a powerful instigator. It just strikes me that there's a dimension of creativity that I have never seen before."
-John Seely Brown, Advisor/Influencer on Global Innovation
The AIA Accelerator, powered by Nest, is a 12-week programme run by a full-time, dedicated team. Up to 8 startups will be selected to come to Hong Kong to accelerate their health tech and/or wearable businesses. Successful applicants will receive:
Gain unprecedented access to this unique accelerator and benefit from the following:
We are seeking up to 8 ambitious startup companies from across Asia with an innovative healthtech proposition. If you are passionate about improving the lives of people through medical, lifestyle, and health monitoring technologies and believe you can bring in a new era of healthtech innovation, we want to hear from you!
Types of solutions we are looking for:
Leveraging both the Nest and AIA networks, participants will benefit from the knowledge and expertise of key industry leaders and renowned entrepreneurs. Furthermore, mentors can offer access to a wider network of contacts that could significantly accelerate a company’s development in just 12 weeks.
Be a part of the thriving startup ecosystem in Hong Kong, one of the world's most dynamic cities.
Take maximum advantage of the other accelerator participants through working in an exciting open-plan office space that is collaborative, creative and fun!
Throughout the accelerator programme there will be regular events promoting entrepreneurship and innovation, open to accelerator startups and Hong Kong’s aspiring entrepreneurs.
What types of business is the Accelerator focusing on?
We are looking for technology-focused startups with a passion for innovation and lots of creativity, who share our revolutionary vision. These are innovative, tech-savvy companies with cutting-edge concepts that could take healthcare into a new dimension.
What role is AIA going to play in the Accelerator?
AIA is committed to supporting entrepreneurs and startups. We will provide mentorship from carefully selected business leaders and entrepreneurs to help you develop your business. These mentors will be able to give you unparalleled advice in marketing, PR, pitching and more, to help you accelerate your company's development. AIA will support companies that are accepted by providing mentors, visibility and engagement around business opportunities that emerge from this programme. You'll also have the collective resources of Nest, both during the programme and afterwards.
What are the networking and educational opportunities provided during the programme?
You'll be surrounded by like-minded entrepreneurs and teams. This will give you an excellent opportunity to build strong working relationships, learn from others' experiences and share your own. We will also provide access to the calendar of educational workshops happening across Hong Kong.
Will all the mentors come from AIA itself?
No. Some will, but the majority will be a network of entrepreneurs and business leaders throughout Hong Kong and many are listed on the Nest website www.nest.vc/team.
What if my company is not an expert at developing healthtech solutions?
We're not looking for experts, just creative startups with a visionary attitude and inspiring ideas. You'll get access to Nest + AIA’s experts in the field. All we ask is that you're capable of building your own solution, have the drive to make it happen, and are focused on the potential of your startup.
What size company is AIA focusing on for this programme?
We're focusing on startups, so these tend to be small businesses or individuals, though there's no limit on the size of the company applying. We're particularly interested in healthcare solutions that can be quickly brought to market and will be ready for beta testing or launch at the Investor Demo Days.
Does my business need to be a B2C or B2B business?
It can be either.
Is there a cost to apply?
The programme is free to startups.
Will you arrange my Hong Kong visa?
Yes, the Nest team will work closely with our friends at InvestHK to help make the application process as smooth as possible.
What will a typical day be like for a AIA Accelerator participant?
We're pleased to say there's no such thing as a typical day. Throughout the programme, you can expect somewhere in the region of 100 potential meetings with mentors, venture capitalists, CEOs, innovators and industry visionaries.
How does the application process work?
Interested startups can apply online through our dedicated F6S application page. It includes a few simple questions about your company and your team. You'll have the opportunity to link to videos and other assets that describe your business.
How detailed does my idea need to be in the application?
In this initial application process, we ask applicants to describe the market opportunity, the team, the concept that you want to take forward and how you plan to execute it. The more information you provide, the easier it is for us to assess the full potential of your business.
Do I need to send in a business plan?
No, just complete the online application.
Is my age a factor in your selection process?
When is the deadline to apply and what's the overall timeline?
Applications open on 6th August and the deadline for submissions is 9th October 2015. If you're a finalist, we'll notify you by 28th October 2015. The timeline has full details, including start and end dates of the programme.
How can participants receive funding after the AIA Accelerator ends?
You'll have the opportunity to showcase your product or service at Investor Demo Day, where a range of potential investors including venture capitalists and influential industry leaders, will see your proposition and listen to your pitch.
Will Nest invest in my company?
As part of the programme, we would like to offer you the opportunity to bring Nest in as an investor in your company to help it grow. As an early stage investor, Nest understands the type of support you need and we are happy to provide that support through our network of investors and our ability to market your company globally. At the beginning of the programme, we will sign an option agreement for Nest to invest in your startup prior to Demo Day at a mutually agreed upon price.
When is the Investor Demo Day?
The Investor Demo Day will be held in March 2016. This exclusive event will be closed to the public and the guest list will include key people from our expansive network of industry leaders, investors, venture capitalists and press.
Will AIA invest in my company?
AIA will have the opportunity to invest in your company after evaluating your product and pitch at the Investor Demo Day
Do companies have to be on-site for the entire 12-week period?
We do require that at least one key team member relocate to Hong Kong for the duration of the programme and recommend that you are on-site as much as possible
Does AIA provide housing for participants?
No, you'll need to make your own living arrangements.
Can I apply if our company or founders are not from Asia? Can you help with visa/immigration issues?
Anyone from anywhere can apply. If you're accepted, you'll need to have a legal right to be in Hong Kong. Nest/AIA may be able to provide working visas for successful companies for the duration of the programme. If this isn't possible, we can put you in touch with agencies and services that can help you with visas and immigration, but we can only do this once you've been accepted into the programme.
Is a participating company's product or service guaranteed to be endorsed by AIA?
No, there are no guarantees. It's entirely at AIA's discretion as to whether a participating company's product or service is taken on and endorsed by AIA.
What is Nest?
Nest is the leading full-service innovation accelerator platform in Hong Kong. Providing seed capital and expertise to entrepreneurs, we empower startups throughout Asia with a wide range of services. Startups presently invested in by Nest can be viewed at www.angel.co/nest-investments.
Why did AIA partner with Nest on this programme?
AIA Accelerator is a 'powered by Nest' programme. This will be run by a dedicated team to help bring innovative business ideas to market. AIA has teamed up with Nest to run its model of mentorship, accelerated, intense development and world-class Demo Day preparation.
How to get in contact?
If you have questions about the programme, please do not hesitate to contact the Nest team by email at AIA@nest.vc.