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University of Edinburgh’s AI accelerator re-opens to new applicants

The University of Edinburgh’s artificial intelligence (AI) accelerator has re-opened applications for the programme.

Those accepted will receive a support package aimed at helping transform their AI businesses into world-leading companies.

The AI Accelerator has a track record in supporting innovative businesses. The 12 cohort companies have raised a combined £4.3m through equity investments and grant funding awards while on the programme, creating new jobs in the process.

The programme will be delivered both digitally and in-person by the University of Edinburgh’s Innovation Hub for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, the Bayes Centre, as part of the university’s commercialisation service.

It is led by the Data-Driven Innovation Programme of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal and delivered on behalf of all Data-Driven Innovation Hubs.

The programme, partnered by global strategic design consultancy NileHQ and supported by Huawei UK, is open to applications from scalable incorporated companies with high growth potential.

The businesses must all use AI for wider societal benefit to deliver solutions in core areas such as health and wellbeing, social car and environmental stewardship.

The AI Accelerator is focused on investment, giving participating companies an ideal platform to develop an investment strategy and meet potential investors.

Along with some financial support, newly accepted cohorts will also be given the opportunity to scale their business through a series of workshops with trainers and mentors covering a range of commercialisation issues from product pricing to leadership.

The previous programme was delivered in partnership with Scale Space, a new community for innovative businesses looking to scale.

Among the participants were a number of Scottish businesses including Carcinotech, a cancer research company which manufactures 3D printed tumours using patient-derived cancer stem cells, primary cells and established cell lines; and, developers of a screenplay platform which enables movie makes to find successful untold stories and gives a voice to more diverse writers.

The deadline for applications for the new AI Accelerator programme is 26 May. It will run for six months from mid-September.

Charlotte Waugh, enterprise and innovation programme lead at Edinburgh Innovations, said: “We’re delighted to invite applications for the next AI Accelerator, a highly successful programme that is helping maximise the commercial potential of innovative start-up companies.

“The programme provides founders with top level strategic advice and focuses on practical issues to help companies to achieve their growth aspirations – we also connect our cohorts to the local, national and international investment community which has been critical in helping participating companies secure millions of pounds in growth capital.”

Katy Guthrie, programme leader of AI Accelerator, said: “Through the AI Accelerator we are helping transform innovative start-ups into world-leading companies and supporting wider economic growth.

“Our commitment to promoting AI for good is aimed at encouraging and supporting entrepreneurs who are focused on addressing key societal challenges such as tackling climate change or health inequalities.”

You can apply now for the Accelerator here before 26th May.

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