Better Incubation is a project by LIAISE

BETTER INCUBATION CONTEST 2022 | SCALING IMPACT

If you are an entrepreneur with an innovative solution to a social or environmental challenge and you are ready to scale it nationally or internationally, join the Better Incubation Contest to grow your impact with a wide community of business intermediaries, investors and other entrepreneurs.

About the contest

Organised by the European Business and Innovation Centre Network (EBN), Impact Hub and the European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA), the Better Incubation Contest 2022 | Scaling Impact aims at selecting the 3 most scalable solutions to social and environmental challenges developed by impact ventures led or founded by entrepreneurs belonging to one of the Better Incubation target groups: women, seniors, people with disabilities, migrants and refugees, youth. 

Better Incubation is a 2-year programme (2021 – 2022) funded by the European Union Programme for Employment and Social Innovation. The aim of Better Incubation is to foster inclusive and social entrepreneurship in Europe by mobilising and empowering Business Support Organisations (BSOs) to effectively help the social enterprises and potential entrepreneurs from the so called underrepresented groups to grow their businesses. Read more here.

Objectives

We are looking for innovative ventures with a clear social and/or environmental mission founded/co-founded and/or led /co-led by entrepreneurs representing one (or more) of the target groups Better Incubation programme is focussing on:  women, migrants or refugees, youth, seniors and people with disabilities.

We are looking for entrepreneurs addressing one or more Sustainable Development Goals and who are willing to explore growing and scaling their innovative solution either nationally or internationally with the support of Better Incubation network of networks: a unique community of EU|BICs (quality-certified business innovation centres), Impact Hubs and Investors for Impact committed to support innovative impact ventures in Europe and beyond. 

Three selected entrepreneurs will be matched with incubation experts that will accompany their scaling trajectory through remote coaching and mentoring sessions; will benefit from a full immersion week at an EU|BIC located in the targeted destination area; and will pitch their solution to an investors panel during the Better Incubation final event that will be held in Brussels on December 2nd, 2022. 

The Better Incubation scaling support has a value of approximately 7000 €, this includes 15 hours of coaching, 1 week incubation programme, travel and accommodation costs to attend the Better Incubation events and the incubation programme in the targeted destination. 

Why join the contest? 

The Better Incubation scaling support is aimed at helping the three finalists:

  • Articulate the social value proposition, identifying why and how the proposed solution addresses unmet needs in the chosen location.
  • Access to appropriate sector and local experts.
  • Assess the team competencies and consider how their business model will adapt to the new environment.
  • Understand investors’ perspective so they can develop a pitch for the Better Incubation final conference in Brussels and for potential partners in the targeted destination.

The Better Incubation Contest 2022 | Scaling Impact offers to the winners:

  • Networking: Three best finalists will be exposed to a wide network of BSOs (EBN, IHUB) and investors (EVPA) interested in supporting impact driven ventures during the Better Incubation events that will take place in Slovenia, 19-20 October 2022 and Better Incubation Final Conference on 2 December 2022. 
  • Mentoring & Coaching: Three best finalists will have access to a virtual 1:1 coaching programme provided by EVPA and Impact Hub experts (15 hours in total). 
  • Scaling – full immersion week: Three best finalists will be also eligible for one-week physical incubation provided by an EBN member – business support organisation in the target country. If interested, the winners can join the 2022 EBN Techcamp powered by Better Incubation (19-20 October 2022 – Sežana, Slovenia), where they can meet the incubators that will host them in the targeted country.
  • Pitching: The three finalists will be given an opportunity to present their business ideas at the Final Conference of the Better Incubation Project to be held in Brussels, 2 December 2022 within the EVPA Impact Week. 
  • Publicity: The three finalists will receive mentions in the Better Incubation and partner networks, including press releases, posts and social media. 

Call application

Better Incubation will offer scaling up services to three selected entrepreneurs willing to grow and scale their solutions to a wider national or international level. 

The call opens on June 21st, 2022, and closes on August 22nd, 2022 (23.59 CET). 

APPLY NOW

The following information is requested:

  1. General information 
  2. Applicant Information (entrepreneur and venture)
  3. Solution description 
  4. Scalability
  5. Innovation
  6. Impact
  7. Motivation and Expectations

Check this document to see how the application form is structured and the required information for each section. 

Proposal Evaluation and Selection

All proposals submitted before the deadline will pass an eligibility check (see eligibility criteria). Proposals passing the eligibility check will be assessed through a transparent evaluation process that will be managed by EBN and led by internal and external experts.

If a solution scores high enough in the assessment criteria, reaching the minimum threshold, it is eligible for the scaling programme. 

This means that:

  1. Each entry meeting the eligibility criteria will be assessed by a minimum of 2 jury members.
  2. Based on the average of Jury members’ scores, we shortlist only the solutions that reach the threshold
  3. We rank them based on the scores they received and we invite the top 5 for an online interview with the jury panel during the week commencing the 12th September 2022. 
  4. Final rank will be elaborated and we will award the best three ones.

Communication between the Better Incubation team and applicants during the application assessment process will be carried out primarily via email. It is therefore recommended that applicants notify Better Incubation if they change the email address they apply with during the application process.  

Eligibility criteria

In order to be eligible to apply and participate, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be connected to members of EBN, EVPA and IHUB networks. 
  • Their companies must be founded by entrepreneurs from one of the following groups: women, people with disabilities, migrants or refugees, youth (18-29) or seniors (over 50).
  • Must have a clearly established social and/or environmental mission.
  • Must be an SME, startup company or a foundation that is a legal entity (legal person) such as a private law company, association or foundation, that is fully registered under the laws of a European Union Member State, or an EaSI Progress Axis associated country.
  • The venture must be already in existence for more than 1 year.

Assessment Criteria

One the eligibility check is performed, the Jury will review and evaluate the nominations using the following criteria and scoring:

  • Solution description > This criterion will assess the proposed solution in terms of how it will address the proposed challenge, on how it will implement the proposed solution, its feasibility and the involvement of stakeholders.  (15 points)
  1. Scalability >  This criterion assesses the scalability of the proposed solution, considering both the scaling up trajectory of an already existing product/service, and the future scalability of the solution. (15 points)
  2. Innovation dimension > This criterion assesses the innovative capacity of the proposed solution. (10 points)
  3. Impact > This criterion assesses how the solution is going to generate social impact (15 points)
  4. Motivation > This criterion assesses the elevator pitch submitted by the applicant -120 seconds. (10 points)

65/65 is the max scoring. The minimum threshold for accessing the programme is 35/65.

Competition timeline 

Timetable and deadlines
Contest launch  21 June 2022 
Applications due 22  August 2022 23:59 CET
Evaluation  23 August –  16 September2022
3 Finalists announced week commencing 19 September 2022
Mentoring and Coaching  September- November 2022
Incubation (1 week)  September – November 2022

Winners can also join the “Techcamp 2022 |Better Incubation” taking place in Sezana, Slovenia the 19-20 October 2022 where they will connect with the EU|BIC that will host them in the targeted destination

Pitching session(s) 1-2 December 2022 (Better Incubation Final Event at EVPA Impact Week)

Useful information

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