The Westpac Innovation Challenge (now closed)
What is the competition about?
The Westpac Innovation Challenge is a startup competition looking for great ideas for how digital innovation and technology can benefit Australian agribusiness. We have an opportunity to transform our agribusiness sector into one of the most impressive in the world with technology, knowledge, capability and products that we can proudly use in Australia or sell abroad. We invite you to think about what the agribusiness industry would look like if it were invented today – and apply with an idea to make that vision a reality.
What ideas can I apply with?
You don’t have to be an agricultural startup specifically to apply; your idea or technology can be much broader as long as it can be used in an agricultural context. These could include digital innovation for land, water and resource management, sustainable farming and minimisation of environmental impacts, or building export markets for Australian agricultural products. Some examples could be connecting agribusiness buyers and suppliers in real time, precision diagnostics, innovations in mapping or surveying, yield prediction algorithms and software tools for helping farmers run their businesses better.
Who should apply?
The Westpac Innovation Challenge is a startup competition open to entrepreneurs, engineers, researchers and innovators with great ideas for how technology and digital innovation can benefit Australian agribusiness. You can apply if you have an idea only, possess an early stage product in the making, or have recently introduced a new product or solution in market. You don’t need to have a company, or a team, or a product in market – all you need is a great idea that uses technology in smart ways for the benefit of agribusiness.
23 June 2015: Applications open
2 August 2015: Applications close
What is the prize?
Five finalists will all receive intensive pitch training and business advice from the BlueChilli team prior to pitching their ideas to the Westpac Digital and Innovation teams. The competition will award one winner a $40,000 cash prize and a six month placement in BlueChilli’s Startup Accelerator to further develop your innovation. Our aim is to help you change an early stage idea into a viable and valuable business. As a major supporter of agribusiness in Australia, Westpac will also introduce the finalists and ultimate winner to industry influencers and decision makers that can help your innovation launch and grow in the market.
$40,000 prize money
5 finalists will be selected to pitch their idea to Westpac. The winner will receive:
- $40,000 cash;
- A six month placement in the BlueChilli Accelerator program to work with you step-by-step from idea to launch;
- Strategic support, insights and advice from the Westpac Innovation team and executive thought leaders to help you help build your customer base, distribution channels and brand as you develop your product and take it to market.
- An opportunity to enter into negotiations for an investment agreement with BlueChilli, which includes discounted technical product development in exchange for remuneration and/or equity from BlueChilli to bring your startup idea to life;
- The five finalists will all receive intensive pitch training and business advice from the BlueChilli team prior to pitching their ideas to the Westpac Digital and Innovation teams.