ENTREPRENEURS keen to scale up their business at pace within the UK’s flourishing space industry are encouraged to apply for the UK Space Agency Accelerator’s Leo and Geo programmes.
Leo and Geo, launched by Dr Paul Bate, CEO of UK Space Agency, at the Ignite Space event in Bristol, are part of the UK Space Agency Accelerator’s suite of bespoke programmes aimed at supporting entrepreneurs at various levels of their space journey.
Delivered by industry experts from Entrepreneurial Spark and Exotopic, with specialist partners, the Leo and Geo programmes will support 90 entrepreneurs across three cohorts with a business boost through specialist coaching, network opportunities and business support to scale their businesses at pace.
Both programmes involve six months of deep, strategic 1:1 support and challenge from entrepreneurial growth experts and technical commercialisation mentors. The programmes include regular bespoke action-learning with peers to make the experience as collaborative as possible.
Leo is targeted at entrepreneurs with some level of business traction and customers in the space sector or using space technology. It will allow entrepreneurs to deepen their understanding of the space industry and provide guidance to fundamentally change the way they grow and lead their business.
Geo will support ambitious entrepreneurs on their journey to becoming stronger leaders and encourage them to spend time on areas that will deliver impact to their business. It is aimed at entrepreneurs with businesses with significant commercial traction in the space sector, with either £500k+ in funding or £500k annualised revenue.
And it’s not just entrepreneurs already operating in the space sector who are encouraged to apply for the Leo and Geo programmes. Providing that space technology, such as satellite data or support infrastructure, is being used applications are welcome from leaders working in a related industry, such as agritech, health, life sciences, software or tech industries.
Following a successful pilot, one entrepreneur who has already seen success in the space industry is Raj Ali, founding CEO of successful software company, RSTARS Technologies, a company that delivers web and software services to scale up SMEs. Raj spotted the opportunity for his business to contribute to the space sector and submitted a successful application for the UK Space Agency Accelerator’s pilot project.
Raj says, “Despite having no prior experience within the space industry, I could see the potential for my business to contribute to our burgeoning space sector, so was delighted the space accelerator pilot welcomed entrepreneurs from other industries too. Participation has not only renewed my confidence in the suitability and adaptability of RSTARS Technologies within the space sector, it also shows that creativity and innovation in space also comes from what we call the adjacent sectors too.
“The programme has enabled me to expand and develop my networks amongst fellow cohort members and has given me access to existing entrepreneurs within the space industry to share knowledge and collaborate. As a result, my business has now reduced its research and development time significantly and, combined with the support from academic and business support institutions, we are now very close to launching our new products and services within the space industry.”.
Dr Paul Bate, CEO at the UK Space Agency, said: “The UK is growing as a multi-talented space nation and we need a diversity of businesses with the right skills and technologies to help our sector thrive. The Space Accelerator Leo and Geo programmes provide a brilliant opportunity for entrepreneurs to access the support they need, so they can take confident next steps in the space sector, no matter what level they are at so far.
“Investing in UK businesses unlocks opportunities to create more jobs, develop a wider range of science and technology capabilities, catalyse further investment into the economy, and champion the benefits of space for everyone.”
To find out more about the UK Space Agency Accelerator and to apply, visit www.ukspaceaccelerator.co.uk.