Wellington – 27 March 2022: A cohort of sixteen remarkable startup teams brimming with impact-focused solutions to drive positive social and environmental change in New Zealand have been selected to participate in Creative HQ’s Impact Accelerator.
And alongside the Impact Accelerator teams, Creative HQ is also announcing the latest cohort of eleven Young Founder Incubator teams of youth aged 17 to 25.
Gearing up for maximum impact: Impact Accelerator is Creative HQ’s largest-ever accelerator programme
The 2023 Impact Accelerator programme, led by Creative HQ, Wellington’s innovation hub, is its largest-ever cohort of teams, designed to give impact-focused startups the resources and support they need to supercharge their ideas.
“This is the first year we are offering our accelerator programme exclusively to impact-focused founders with clear missions to drive positive social and environmental change, and it’s also the largest cohort we’ve ever run in a single programme. They’ve got the ideas – and our job is to help fast-track the growth of these sustainable, high-impact startups,” says Joe Slater, Creative HQ’s GM Startups.
The cohort features teams tackling various environmental, social, health and well-being challenges that Kiwis are faced with.
“We know that there’s a real demand for impact-focused startup products at the moment. In 2021, our Climate Response Accelerator teams collectively brought in over $4m of investment,” says Slater. “The Impact Accelerator programme expands on that, opening our support services to startup teams looking to improve the overall fabric of Aotearoa. We help them get investment or launch-ready, so they can get their businesses out making a positive difference in the world.”
The Impact Accelerator teams include health innovation teams like Daisy, which is dedicated to enhancing support available to pregnant women with morning sickness, to Māori-led startup WellStream, which is developing a mobile app that helps its customers achieve improved mental wellbeing by making obvious what their personal sources and sinks of wellbeing really are.
“We believe that if people are confident about what is good or bad for their mental wellbeing, they will choose the good, and their wellbeing will increase,” says WellStream Founder, Ben Blain. “We know that mental health is a growing issue – particularly in New Zealand and especially in the post-pandemic era that we’re now in, making our kaupapa more important than ever.”
For three months, these sixteen innovative founders will benefit from connections to government and corporate partners, mentoring from startup experts, and access to Creative HQ’s network of knowledgeable alums.
The Young Founders Incubator: Eleven new teams set to be supercharged with support
Creative HQ also runs an annual Young Founders Incubator programme to provide innovation support services to youth founders aged 16 to 21.
The teams in this years’ Young Founders Incubator span a wide range of ideas, including FINE, a business which provides sustainable chemicals and materials for industrial use, made from New Zealand’s natural fibres and by-products to reduce carbon emissions.
Another team in the Young Founders cohort is Beyond Education, an online platform designed to level the playing field, expand students horizons, & accelerate their future. Beyond Education supports students no matter their financial situation, cultural background, or ethnic group, by exposing them to a personalised list of extra-curricular opportunities that align with their passions, interests, goals & preferences
The teams of both programmes will work directly with industry partners and Creative HQ coaches to practice the learning and validation techniques that have helped hundreds of startups succeed in previous Creative HQ programmes.
Both programmes are being delivered as a hybrid in-person and online programme, which opens up opportunities for business development across the country, allowing companies from Kerikeri and Whanganui to participate. Startup teams based in Wellington can also work out of Creative HQ’s central city office.
“Both programmes’ teams will present at the final showcase, where they will pitch their mission, market offering, and progress to investors and innovation experts. We then support those ready to enter investment showcases in New Zealand and Australia,” says Slater. “With the right support, these teams can really change the game by taking their impact-focused products to market.”
Since 2013, Creative HQ has run 15 successful accelerator programmes, helping over 150 companies and bringing in over $100 million in financing through seed and Series A rounds.
“We encourage all Kiwi startups with a bright idea to get in touch and find out how we can help you bring your dreams to fruition, and deliver positive change for Aotearoa,” concludes Slater.
Complete list of 2023 Impact Accelerator teams:
|Belu Club (Previously known as Barrel Club)||Wellington||An intergenerational home-support platform that empowers our older community members to thrive at home – delivered by local mums (or dads) with bubs in tow.|
|Daisy||Auckland||Drink Daisy supports those suffering from Morning Sickness, Hyperemesis Gravidarum and the management of hydration during pregnancy.|
|Every Gender||Wellington & Auckland||Combining 20+ years’ storytelling experience, founders of Every Gender are addressing inequity for the trans community by offering their lived experience to workplace inclusion conversations.|
|Fuel My Potential||Dunedin||Fuel My Potential has leading experts delivering on-demand nutrition insights relevant to all of us, straight from the trenches of high-performance sport to your fingertips, to help you live your best life too.|
|GEOBIND||Kerikeri||Developing a range of environmentally friendly building materials including bricks, blocks and panels using the geopolymer binder they have developed ‘GEOBIND’.|
|Teespa||Wellington||Teespa makes masks for teeth and gums to help improve oral health and prevent hefty dental bills.|
|Fit Rewards (Previously known as Gym Token)||Wellington||Fit Rewards aims to create a healthier and more inclusive society by rewarding fitness enthusiasts and empowering them to donate their benefits to those less fortunate.|
|myED||Wellington & Auckland||myED empowers patients with targeted information and tools, to make complex healthcare journeys simpler, improving health outcomes, waiting times, and integrating emergency and non-urgent care.|
|The Hyphen Project (Previously known as NZ Institute of Twice Exceptional Talent)||Wellington||An institute that runs a specialised post-secondary programme to help launch the careers of exceptional neurodivergent teens.|
|Pickpath||Wellington||Pickpath was made by artists in response to huge digital agency costs. Now we want to democratise app experiences for all creative people.|
|The Green Marketplace (Previously known as Raizor)||Auckland||The Green Marketplace is a B2B platform focused on making meaningful and measurable reductions in a business’s carbon footprint through procurement.|
|Ryd.||Auckland||Ryd’s unified mobility platform improves travel in New Zealand by optimizing fleet usage, automating management, and making vehicles accessible to a wider user base through the app.|
|Volition||Wellington||A social enterprise helping disabled people to direct their own lives through accessible software.|
|Wellstream||Whanganui||WellStream is a mobile app to help people create more mental wellbeing by self-knowledge and measurement.|
|Loffty||Auckland||Saving and uplifting lives through better mental health insights.|
|TNFD Pilot (Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosures).||A pilot TNFD project working with three world leading startups and two leading New Zealand food producers, to help build TNFD knowledge and capability. The pilot will help these organisations assess their specific risks and opportunities that result from their dependance on nature or their impacts on nature.|
Complete list of 2023 Young Founders Incubator teams:
|Better Buzz||A lightly supplemented alcohol alternative beverage product designed to mimic some of the relaxing and creativity and sociability enhancing effects of alcohol without the negatives. Combined with natural New Zealand extracts and flavours for provenance appeal, and premium taste.|
|FINE||At FINE, we provide sustainable chemicals and materials for industrial use, made from New Zealand’s natural fibres and by-products to reduce carbon emissions. Our approach to materials management helps optimise usage, lower waste and save money.|
|Beyond Education||Beyond Education is an online platform designed to level the playing field, expand students horizons, & accelerate their future, no matter their financial situation, cultural background, or ethnic group, by exposing students to a personalised list of extra-curricular opportunities that align with their passions, interests, goals & preferences. Beyond Education offers Students (especially those in low decile schools) a way to enrich their knowledge outside of the traditional education system.|
|MIDWÆY||MIDWÆY is a platform that helps creatives build sustainable careers in the arts. It connects artists with resources such as opportunities, communities, education, and web tools. The platform is being developed to address the challenges faced by artists during the COVID-19 pandemic, including rising costs, inconsistent income, and a lack of education in marketing, law, and business.|
|Ayurveda Store NZ||Ayurveda provides herbs and healthcare supplements sourced from overseas, being the exclusive New Zealand supplier of a variety of products.|
|Kaha E Au||Kaha E Au is a sustainable protein powder business that incorporates rongoa. We will be based in Whangārei and will trade all over New Zealand. I believe the right nutritional choices steeped in kaitiakitanga and tikanga, (guardianship and responsibility) should be available to everybody. Enabling you and the land to say ”Kaha E Au”, I am mighty.|
|Splashify||Splashify is an online platform that connects pool owners with people who are looking for a refreshing and affordable way to enjoy the luxuries of a private pool and hot tub.|
|Where’s the Foodie||A new way to experience food recommendations, discover local restaurants and connect with other foodies.|
|Orbit||An online marketplace for second hand and vintage clothing.|
|Sun & Set||Sun & Set is a company that offers a unique and innovative product, dry shampoo with UV protection, that can be applied to the scalp and is reef safe.|
|Melitta Skin||Melitta Skin is on a mission to shake up the sun care industry. Despite the plethora of sun care products on the market, everyday consumers still struggle to find a sunscreen that meets their needs.|
For more information or to arrange an interview please contact: