Momentum Accelerator

Accelerate your business's growth with UQ’s Momentum Accelerator, now seeking female founders for its' next cohort.

Throughout our 15-week program, each qualifying business receives expert guidance to enhance business skills, grow networks, and boost scaling plans to help participants prepare for fundraising. We'll determine if raising capital is right for you and act accordingly. The program concludes with a pitch to top investors, offering direct funding opportunities via our partnership with Queensland Investment Corporation's Venture Capital Development Fund (VCDF) and other investment groups. Hosted by UQ, it's open to all and not limited to UQ students or university affiliates.

Applications for Momentum Accelerator's female founder cohort are now open.

Apply now for the Momentum Accelerator

The Momentum Accelerator for female founders will run for 15 weeks from September to the middle of December 2024 at UQ's Long Pocket dedicated Ventures Studio.

Program commitment required:

  • 1 day each week of structured program content and on-site UQ Ventures Studio Long Pocket (Brisbane)
  • 1 session each week (in-person or virtual) to support cadence and founder health and wellbeing
  • founder updates and talks from industry experts, innovators, and Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIRs) will be scheduled regularly throughout the program.

Throughout the program your team will have access to:

  • 24/7 co-working space and makerspace
  • regular seminars and talks from speakers, industry specialists, investors, and successful founders
  • a dedicated entrepreneur who has successfully navigated the startup-to-exit journey, along with a world-class EIR
  • partnership benefits from Google, Microsoft, AWS, Hubspot, Matlab, Makerspace and more.

The program will culminate in Pitch Event, where selected founders will have the chance to present their business to venture capitalists and investors. The program's unique collaboration with the Queensland Investment Corporation's Venture Capital Development Fund enhances the potential for investment by providing significant support to accelerator business growth.

Virtual session to cover key information, Q&A, and application tips
Date: Tuesday, 23 July 2024
Time: 6-7pm AEST
Venue: (online)

Register for the info session

Momentum Accelerator Panel: Entrepreneurship and Funding as a Female Founder
Wednesday, 7 August 2024
Time: 6-8pm AEST
Venue: 308 Queen Street, Room 223, Brisbane City, Qld 4000

Register for the panel

Applications for the Momentum Accelerator will be open to any Queensland or Queensland-based business where one of the founders identifies as female.

We are looking for passionate and committed founders, co-founders, CEOs, owners, and directors with businesses that have experienced initial growth and are now poised to elevate their operations to new heights.

You do not have to be a UQ student or affiliated with any other university to apply. Applicants must

  • have a registered ABN/ACN
  • have an office in or be based in Queensland
  • have one founder who identifies as female
  • have market traction; examples include active users or in revenue/sales
  • have a business with growth potential
  • have a business with a defendable competitive advantage
  • be considering raising capital to facilitate growth

Overview and Terms and Conditions (PDF, 234.6 KB)   View Agreement (PDF, 195.7 KB)

You will be required to sign the Momentum Accelerator Agreement to participate in this program. Participating in the program is a significant commitment, incorporating 1 day a week for a structured program and 1-on-1 sessions. There are key deliverables and activities each week that are expected to take a reasonable amount of time to complete and commitment is required for events, the pitch night, and presentations.

Founders are expected to participate in at least 90 per cent of the provided workshops and accountability sessions. Lower participation may result in founders losing their funding and being removed from the program.

Application process

Placement in the Momentum Accelerator program is competitive. Applicants must complete a four-stage application process to be accepted into the program (one per team). 

Stage 1. Application (online)
You will be required to fill out the online application form, outlining evidence of business modelling, market traction, growth potential, and competitive advantage.

Stage 2.  Momentum selections: first round interviews (online)
Shortlisted candidates from Stage 1 will be invited to participate in a selection process of first round interviews. Founders will pitch their business (5 minutes) to our selection committee of experienced entrepreneurs and mentors. Please note, you only need to be available for your allocated interview time slot. First round interviews will be conducted during the week commencing 19 August 2024.

Stage 3.  Momentum selections: second round interviews (in-person)
Candidates from the first round of interviews will be shortlisted and the successful candidates will be invited to a second round of interviews (!5 minutes) with our Program Manager and Entrepreneur in Residence. These interviews are designed to probe further into your business and provide advice and feedback on how you may fit into the program. Please note, you only need to be available for your allocated interview time slot. Second round interviews will be conducted during the week commencing 26 August 2024.

Stage 4. Successful startups notified
The selection committee will decide on the final cohort. Successful teams will be required to sign the Momentum Accelerator Agreement prior to starting the program. 

The program will commence on 11 September 2024.

UQ's Momentum Accelerator offers access to capital through established venture capitalists as well as potential access to angel investors.

While being part of the accelerator significantly enhances your visibility to investors and the Venture Capital Development Fund (VCDF), funding is not guaranteed. It remains merit-based and competitive. UQ Ventures will provide the guidance and support to put your most compelling pitch together as you seek investment.

Please seek your own independent advice before entering into this agreement. UQ is not responsible for you and/or your companies’ independent financial situation.

Find out more about funding in the terms and conditions.  (PDF, 201.3 KB)

Yazz Krishna

Yazz Krishna, Program Manager

The Momentum Accelerator is spearheaded by Yazz Krishna, a seasoned entrepreneur known for founding Five Faces, a Brisbane-based Enterprise SaaS and managed service provider. Under Yazz's leadership, Five Faces expanded internationally in the retail and healthcare sectors before his exit in 2021. Currently, as the Director of Yazz Investments, Yazz dedicates his expertise to supporting early to mid-stage entrepreneurs.

His areas of specialisation include sales structure and team development, distribution channels, enterprise solution deployment, high-performance team management, commercial negotiations, resolving shareholder disputes, MVP development, and crafting go-to-market strategies.

Yazz is passionate about guiding startups and scaleups through the capital raising process, and ensuring they are well-informed, prepared, and aware of their financing options.


Annika Launay, Entrepreneur in Residence (EiR)

Annika, the Momentum Accelerator's EiR, is a seasoned entrepreneur who has successfully launched and led three businesses, most notably PDPR, a national marketing agency known for its multi-disciplinary approach. PDPR combines traditional public relations with experiential activations, digital strategies, and influencer engagement to achieve targeted results across industries such as tourism, hospitality, property, government, and retail throughout the APAC region.

Annika is also the visionary behind Franc.World, Australia's largest multimedia platform for tweens and teens, which empowers youth by showcasing educational opportunities and career pathways. Passionate about uplifting others, especially women in business, Annika is dedicated to giving back to the next generation.