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Applications are now open for Innovate 2022, with the aim of finding the smartest ideas and aspiring entrepreneurs in the Manawatū region.

Innovate Manawatu

Innovate encourages entrepreneurialism, creating a pathway for innovators to work through their business models, building connections with mentors and opening up opportunities for investment.

CEDA are a proud sponsor of the Innovate programme, which sits centrally to CEDA’s role in supporting the development of an environment where connections can form, resources and mentors can be accessed, and investment attracted.

This year, CEDA’s Business Growth Advisors Peter Ellingham and Matthew Jeanes will be on hand, sitting on the selection panel for pitches and providing mentorship.

“Innovate has been running for 11 years now and the calibre of applicants is always high,” says Peter Ellingham.

“As mentors, we will hear from innovative individuals and businesses who have huge passion for their ideas.”

“We can then help direct those passions into robust business models and identify key connections and opportunities to transform their businesses.”

Innovate is New Zealand’s first mini-accelerator, receiving almost 1,800 entries since 2006, creating 80 businesses and helping to raise over $5 million dollars of investment for Innovate companies.

“My advice for those considering putting their ideas forward, is to just go for it,” says Peter.

“You have nothing to lose and so much to gain from the experience, whether it’s the process of applying which helps to solidify your ideas, or you are selected as one of the finalists and the opportunities that presents.”

Entries will be whittled down to 20 semi-finalists who will be invited to pitch to a room of selectors. From there, 10 finalists will be selected to complete a 10-week programme with mentors before a final’s night in December.

Key Dates

1 July: Applications open
26 August: Applications close (5pm)
31 August: Semi-Finalist Selected (Top 20)
5 – 6 September: Semi-Finalist Pitch
7 September: Finalist Announcement
12 September: 10-week Finalist Programme begins
1 December: Finals Night

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