UWI Ventures Limited is a special purpose company whose mandate is to link The UWI St Augustine Campus’ St. Augustine Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (StACIE) and Entrepreneurship Unit (EU) to create an integrated entrepreneurship ecosystem providing 24/7 365 days access to innovators, entrepreneurs locally and regionally. It includes a commercial entity and a not-for-profit entity. It is committed to creating a strategically coordinated national entrepreneurship support ecosystem to power and develop globally competitive, technologically advanced start-ups.
We collaborate with The UWI St Augustine Campus’ St. Augustine Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (STACIE), Entrepreneurship Unit (EU), and by extension all our Faculties, Centres, and Institutes to support alumni, students, UWI Faculties and the public who are daring to be innovators and/or entrepreneurs in viable high-value start-ups. We will also be extending our research and support to alumni, students, and Faculty of all Campuses across the region on a planned roll-out being very shortly.
Through UWI Ventures and our ecosystem, we provide four suites of services which include:
(i) Entrepreneurship and Business Planning Support.
(ii) Innovation and Research Support.
(iii) Business Investor Options.
(iv) Start-Up Capital Support.
We provide financial support and investment to start-ups, entrepreneurs and innovators. Through our ecosystem, we also provide technical assistance, mentoring, coaching and intellectual property support. We adopt an inclusive approach embracing Youth Entrepreneurs, Women Entrepreneurs, Social Entrepreneurs, Creatives, and Retirees.
UWI Ventures supports all projects which have good commercial viability. Our areas of interest include but not limited to Energy related Projects, Energy Efficiency, Agri-Business, Medicine, Manufacturing, ICT, Tourism, Creatives Sector, Professional Services, and Sustainable Social Enterprise.
Any UWI Student, Staff, Alumni or Faculty Member can apply. Also, members of the public with an innovative or entrepreneurial product or service are encouraged to apply.
At the application stage, a business plan is not mandatory. However, you will be required to specify the following:
- Contact Details
Type of Applicant:
- Timeframe for Investment
- Area of Interest
Moving beyond the Registration stage and into application for financial support however will require some standard documents (2 Forms of ID, Utility Bill and a Bank Statement. Company documents may also be required depending on what stage you’re at).
A Non- Disclosure Agreement will be signed by both parties to safeguard sensitive and confidential information and deter any breaches of intellectual property.
We aim to provide feedback within 2 business days after registration. Once your file is created and a coach is assigned to you, feedback will be regular and ongoing.
Apply Now! We’re are very much interested in learning about your innovative project and finding ways to commercialise.
Absolutely! UWI Ventures adheres to the strictest confidentiality and ethics in our interactions with you and other stakeholders. We will take all steps to ensure the full preservation and protection of all confidential and privileged information.
Once you submit your application, an assigned Faculty or Entrepreneurship Unit (EU) coach will contact you via email within 2 business days acknowledging receipt of your application. You will also be invited to a meeting which will provide you with preliminary guidance on how to progress your idea.
Applicants will receive feedback through our AcceleratorApp software. All applicants will have unique log in credentials for AcceleratorApp.
Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind: inventions, literary and artistic works, and symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce.
For more information, advice and support click here!
A patent is an agreement or right where the state gives a monopoly on manufacture, use and trade for up to twenty years. In return, the owner gives certain technical information to the public sufficient for a skilled person to recreate the invention.
For more information, advice and support click here!
The coaches are your first level of professional contact who have been trained to navigate the system and provide additional assistance and support.
Yes, your coach will provide a preliminary assessment of your application.
It depends upon the progress of your project.
Yes, we will work with you on a most feasible solution.
Your coach will carry out a preliminary assessment of your application and provide guidance on the next steps of your application.
Your coach will have in-depth understanding of The UWI I&E support ecosystem and the business start-up process, digital platform, Intellectual Property support and will be able to guide you in terms of concept refinement. Beyond that, your coach will network you to industry experts who can mentor you towards further development and business success.
Your mentor will be an experienced consultant, business professional, executive and/or an entrepreneur who has been screened and inducted to help you grow a successful business. Your mentor will be matched to you with relevant skills based on your unique circumstances and needs.
Your mentor will work alongside you to accelerate your commercial readiness, leverage network and industry experience to position your investable project for commercialisation.
You will be appointed a mentor based on the approval and recommendation from your coach which is subject to also approval by the mentor. You will be required to have certain prerequisites which includes a certificate of clear incorporation/structure, approved business plan and action plan, commercial readiness, prototype and investable stage.
The duration will be based on the commercial interest of your project.
This is an individual who has specialised knowledge and skill and has demonstrated technical expertise in a particular area through experience, education or both.
Based on the information you provide, you will be assigned an expert whose experience and knowledge best fits your needs. The technical areas of expertise include prototyping, testing, equipment use, energy sector, medicine field.
A spinout is an effective way of commercialising technology/inventions developed at a University, and can be an effective method to raise money and market it to customers.
See UWI Spinout Policy and Procedures (StACIE)
UWI Ventures Limited offers four suites of services which include:
- Entrepreneurship Unit – Business Planning Coaching & Support
- StACIE – IP Management and Project Development Funding
- UWI Ventures Limited – Venture Capital Financing
- UWI Ventures Limited – Access to Expert Mentors
The Entrep. Unit (Item #1) can help you to prepare the necessary documents and proposals to the UWI F&GPC in order to gain approval to launch a UWI Spinout. Once approved, you may be eligible for UWI Ventures Limited Financing.
The UWI Ventures Limited is still in the ‘early operations’ phase and is in the process of building its portfolio of projects for development.
Contact StACIE for an assessment on whether your idea is will qualify for a Grant.
That type of grant will most closely approximate the RDI Grant fund or the ITT Grant fund that are offered through StACIE (Contact StACIE)
You can visit the Entrepreneurship Unit for advice on your idea and / or contact StACIE for an assessment on whether your idea will qualify for a Grant.
The Entrepreneurship Unit Offers a range of training workshops including;
- Concept Development
- Business Planning
- Cash Flow Forecasting
- Marketing for SMEs
- Business Pitch Delivery
UWI Staff and Lecturers with expertise in the subject matter.
The standard coaching fee at the Entrepreneurship Unit is TTD$200 for non-UWI persons, but it is a free service for UWI Staff and Students.
Training Programmes will be regularly posted to the UWI Ventures Website.
Currently our services are only offered online, through our digital platform. Training workshops however are conducted using appropriate UWI facilities and are stated in the promotional flyers when marketed.