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Application Deadline: November 20, 2022
The Innovation Square Startup Accelerator (I2@OIST) is Okinawa’s first global startup accelerator program. Each year, a highly selective group of entrepreneurs from all over the world is chosen to participate in a fixed-term residency program at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST), where they receive the funding, mentoring, and partnerships required to launch their technology ventures right here in Okinawa, Japan. The I2@OIST Accelerator combines talent, facilities, and resources from OIST with the most innovative, global technology entrepreneurs to build startups together. As the first startup accelerator program aiming to recruit entrepreneurs from around the world to locate in Okinawa, we believe we can help innovative startups and founders build next generation solutions to meet local and global markets and realize Okinawa’s potential as a regional center for innovation in science and technology.
Teams accepted to the accelerator program will work with the OIST Technology Development & Innovation Center (TDIC) and its network of mentors based around the world to bring their product to market with funding from the Okinawa Prefectural Government.
- Entrepreneurs from Japan and overseas with an innovative technology ranging in Technology Readiness Level of 3-6.
- All technology fields are considered except projects requiring pharmaceutical/drug clinical trials (pre-clinical is eligible).
- If selected, at least 1 founder who has (or will have) ownership of the startup must relocate to Okinawa and devote 100% effort on the project for the duration of the accelerator program.
- Awards will range from 3-10 million JPY
- Funds can be used for:
- Personnel (salary, benefits)
- Lab supplies
- Contract research
- Travel to conferences and exhibitions
Resources and Services:
- Lab and office space
- Access to OIST core research equipment and resources
- Connect with OIST research and business network
- Faculty and researchers
- Venture capital and industry partners
- Expert industry mentors assigned to each project
- Professional Training
- Lean Startup Entrepreneurship Program
- Business Planning Courses
- Project Management Courses
- Professional Services
- Corporate legal advice
- Intellectual property advice
- Administrative Services
- Program management by staff of the OIST Technology Development & Innovation Center
- IT services
- Passion and commitment to the technology and project
- Fit to OIST environment and resources
- Technical merit
- Market potential
- Goals achievable within program duration
- Societal impact (Okinawa, Japan, the World)