Located on the St Lucia and Long Pocket campuses, ilab provides a supportive environment for UQ entrepreneurs – students, researchers and alumni – by mentoring them through the early stage of business development and providing seed funding to scale their business.
Since 2012, ilab has introduced Germinate accelerator programs, intern placement programs and a range of other founder friendly initiatives. UQ’s ilab has run more than 13 accelerator programs, continued its startup incubator, has supported in excess of 500 young founders across 185 startup companies and has organised over 3000 mentor sessions cementing its position as one of the most experienced startup accelerator programs in Australia.
With the rapid growth of internet, mobility and cloud computing, different methods of supporting early stage companies through accelerated startup approaches became more applicable. These are characterised by low capitalisation requirements during the initial business validation and early product build phases and support rapid growth for successful businesses model, but also rapid, low cost failure where the model proves less compelling.
In support of this, ilab introduced a new accelerator model called Germinate in 2012 while maintaining complimentary incubation and co-shared office capability for more established companies.
ilab was established by the Queensland Government in 2000 originally as a business incubator to support early stage, high-tech companies through the first few years of development by building their business management capabilities, fostering mentor networks for start-up founders, creating investor ready companies, and graduating companies with increased chances of success.
In 2009, The University of Queensland (UQ) acquired ilab in an arrangement with the State Government. During this partnership, The University of Queensland’s ilab cast a wide net in its support of new startups and the growth of startup eco-systems across Queensland. Startups from across the state, across a range of demographics and from a variety of institutions well beyond UQ have benefited from ilab’s programs and have made UQ’s ilab a unique and valued player within Queensland’s burgeoning startup ecosystem.