We want you to have all the information you need. Check out our answers to some commonly asked questions below.
What is Xcelerate?
Xcelerate is a 6 month accelerator program, backed by Coca-Cola Amatil and powered by Australia’s largest accelerator, BlueChilli. It provides funding, a structured startup curriculum, incredible mentors, potential pilot opportunities as well as a team of engineers, product managers, designers and developers to help startups bring their ideas to market successfully.
Who is Coca-Cola Amatil?
Coca-Cola Amatil works across a diverse group of businesses, across six countries, to delight millions of consumers everywhere and every day with our leading range of ready-to-drink non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, coffee and ready-to-eat food snacks. We’re renowned for our world-class manufacturing and sales capabilities, unrivalled relationships, reach and execution. You can read more about Amatil here.
Why is Amatil running Xcelerate?
Xcelerate is Amatil’s startup accelerator program designed to engage startups in areas beyond its core business to explore new growth opportunities for us to invest in. Put simply, Coca-Cola Amatil is committed to creating positive change in the world, and wants to discover new ways to make that happen. That’s where you come in! With your great idea, and Amatil’s backing, we can build tomorrow’s companies to make a difference in the world.
Who is BlueChilli?
BlueChilli is Australia’s largest startup accelerator, bringing together entrepreneurs and industry partners to build impactful, investable global startups. BlueChilli has invested in and built over 113 startups already, and achieved a portfolio value of over $500M including 3 exits and 1 IPO. They are providing a proven framework for Xcelerate to collaborate effectively with startups to identify and invest in new growth opportunities. You can read more about BlueChilli here.
What ideas are suitable for Xcelerate?
The goal of Xcelerate is to fund, build and launch successful tech startups. We’ve provided themes to guide your thinking, and we’re open to any idea as long as it leverages technology to grow a valuable and scalable company.
What's a Tech Startup?
An idea that harnesses the power of technology to realise the solution. Xcelerate is looking for ideas that utilise technologies like blockchain, IoT, machine learning, AI, drones and biometrics and everything wonderful in between. We are encouraging and empowering problem-solvers to create a positive impact with little more than a big idea!
Whether it’s leveraging a network, community or customer base, utilising insights from data to provide personalised, powerful and valuable experiences, or automating the way products, customers and information are moved and shared, the opportunities are endless.
Do I need to be an Australian or New Zealand citizen/permanent resident to apply for Xcelerate?
Applications can be made by individuals or teams where the main applicant is an Australian OR New Zealand citizen or permanent resident who are 18 years or older.
Do I need to have a business set up already?
You do not need to have a business set up to apply to the startup accelerator. In fact, the Xcelerate program is best suited to entrepreneurs with early stage ideas that will benefit from validating their ideas before spending money on setting up company structures. Applications for later stage companies (scale-ups) will open in August.
Do I need a team to apply for Xcelerate?
Both teams and individuals can apply for Xcelerate. The program is designed to help you go from idea to launch, and then support you to build the right team when your company is ready to grow.
Do I need startup experience to apply?
You do not need to have a team, a product, or previous startup experience to apply for the accelerator. We value problem-solvers from everywhere in Australia and New Zealand with different working backgrounds and from all different ages, cultures and perspectives. BlueChilli provides participants with the startup resources they’ll need help to build and launch their startups.
Can scale-ups apply?
Scale-Ups can apply for our Scale-Up program, the second half of the program is where we focus on pilots, partnerships and investment to help your business scale.
However applications for the 2018 Scale-Up program have closed - Stay tuned for our next program!
What do scale-ups get in the scale-up accelerator?
Joining BlueChilli and Coca-Cola Amatil means gaining access to a proven accelerator with a proven track record, and backing from one of the largest global brands, activities include:
Exclusive face-to-face immersion sessions with workshops and activities
Opportunities to practice your pitch and receive feedback
Anything that interacts with the Coca-Cola Amatil ecosystem, from supply chain and logistics through to delighting their consumers, could be suitable. It’s up to you to demonstrate how having access to Coca-Cola Amatil will help scale your business.
What are the key dates?
Finalists announced: 23 May
Finalists bootcamp: 28 May - 13 June (2 weeks)
Startups selected for accelerator: 13 June
Startup accelerator: 25 June - 17 September (12 weeks)
Demo Day: 19 September
Scaleup Applications: 1 August - 29 August
Successful applicants announced: 10 September
Scaleup program: 26 September - 22 November
Investor Showcase in Sydney: 22 November
What is the application process?
You’ll need to submit a written application using our application platform, where we ask you ten questions about your idea and five questions about you and your team. This is followed by a two week bootcamp for finalists and an in-person pitch for final placement into the accelerator program.
How are applications assessed?
After applications close, ideas are screened for eligibility, with evaluation broadly based on the problem, the opportunity, and the team. We look for the strongest applications that can demonstrate why their idea represents a real opportunity against the themes set by Amatil, that the right time for execution is now, and that they are the best person to make it happen.
From hundreds of applications, up to 30 finalists will be invited to participate in a two-week bootcamp where they will be challenged by the startup experts from BlueChilli on the feasibility and viability of their ideas. Founders who successfully complete the bootcamp and demonstrate the right characteristics will then pitch to a selection committee consisting of BlueChilli and Amatil representatives for one of 15 places in the program.
What happens if someone is selected as a finalist for the bootcamp?
Entrepreneurs/teams will be invited to take part in a rapid two week bootcamp in Sydney where they’ll learn about startups, validation, pitching, business models, growth and many other topics to help you get more clarity on the potential of their ideas. The bootcamp consists of masterclasses, workshops, talks from advisors, weekly one-on-one mentoring sessions with BlueChilli Entrepreneurs in Residence, tasks and group activities. At the conclusion of the bootcamp, 15 startups will be invited into the accelerator and will be offered the funding package outlined below.
What does Xcelerate offer?
The Xcelerate program offers an attractive proposition to early stage startups to immerse yourself into a team of 30+ startup experts who have invested in and built over 100 startups.
In return for 15% equity, BlueChilli provides:
A technology team to build your minimum viable product (MVP), saving you $50,000 to $100,000
Expertise including an assigned Product Manager and Entrepreneur-in-Residence, market-proven curriculum and a cohort of peers
Co-working space in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane throughout the six month accelerator program
Access to subject matter experts and customers to validate your idea
An initial AUD$38,000 to get you started, with up to a further $500,000 in follow-on funding available
Is there follow-on funding available?
Yes, startups who complete the full Xcelerate program and raise funds from independent investors following the program are eligible for up to AUD$500,000 in follow-on funding, provided by the BlueChilli Venture Fund (AUD$250,000) and Hatcher+ Venture Capital (USD$200,000). You can read more about BlueChilli’s partnership with Hatcher here.
Will Amatil invest directly into my startup?
In addition to funding from BlueChilli Venture Fund and Hatcher+, at the conclusion of the accelerator program, Amatil expects to make direct investment offers to up to three startups for up to $200,000 each.
Where can I find the terms and conditions for the Xcelerate program?