FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is an accelerator?
An accelerator is an intensive scale-up incubation and support program that typically operates over a 12-week period. It’s a well-developed and popular approach to innovation already used in many industries.
How is Igniting METS accelerator different from other accelerators?
Igniting METS accelerator is an accelerator program specifically for innovation in the Mining Equipment, Technology and Services (METS) industries. It is an intensive advisory, mentorship and support program designed to rapidly develop the scale-ups ’ business model and product-service offering through KPMG’s leading advisory services, external mentors and access to leading METS corporates. Uniquely, Igniting METS accelerator is co-designed with leading METS sector corporates and built around their most-pressing innovation priorities, providing scale-ups with innovative solutions the opportunity to get in front of relevant decision makers.
Why would I want to apply for an Igniting METS accelerator
Igniting METS is an Australian-first joint initiative between METS Ignited and the Queensland Government to assist Mining, Equipment, Technology and Services companies. METS Ignited is an industry-led organisation funded by the Australian Government as part of its Growth Centre Initiative. The Igniting METS accelerator program seeks to bring late-stage scale-ups and SMEs together with leading mining sector corporates focused on innovative mining sector solutions, to drive greater industry collaboration and commercialisation outcomes. The mission is to strengthen Australia’s position as a global hub for mining innovation, and, enhance the global competitive advantage of the Australian METS industry. The vision is to build and Australian METS industry has an aligned, efficient and agile industry ecosystem with a high degree of collaborative, global leadership in innovation, and a growing share of the global market.
Igniting METS accelerator is the third iteration of what is the largest sector-specific accelerator in the southern hemisphere. After two successful programs, METS Ignited has contracted KPMG to return with an enhanced accelerator co-designed with Tier 1 resources corporates and incorporating some exciting new improvements. The program is built upon KPMG’s success with the Energise program, where they have successfully helped 2 cohorts of later stage scale-ups refine their value proposition, business model and strategy in preparation for their next stage of growth. KPMG is one of the largest global networks providing professional services, operating in 155 countries and with over 162,000 people working in member firms around the world. The program leverages the broad capability of KPMG to provide Igniting METS accelerator participants with a whole of business and market approach.
KPMG advisors are among the best in the business and have extensive experience in company set-up, product development, customer discovery and pitching. We also have a large network of METS clients to whom participants can pitch ideas, as well as hundreds of clients looking to invest; from high net worth individuals and institutional investors to small companies to global corporations.
Why is METS Ignited and KPMG doing this?
Results from similar innovation initiatives such as the Energise accelerator programs, has strengthened the idea that new challenges demand new solutions. That’s why METS Ignited and KPMG Australia have looked to harness Australia’s best and brightest scale-ups to offer new solutions to the METS sector. Through Igniting METS accelerator, METS Ignited and KPMG will assist organisations to identify and engage innovative scale-ups . Igniting METS accelerator provides access to an established accelerator program with an already-strong brand in the scale-ups sector, bringing access to scale-ups who are leading their respective fields and providing broad reach beyond what could be accessed through an in-house single-company accelerator program.
METS Ignited and KPMG recognise that innovation is key to sustainable productivity growth and that small scale-ups often have great ideas but find it difficult to scale. Igniting METS accelerator provides a platform for raising awareness of your business in the marketplace and provides cues to external suppliers on areas where innovation is sought.
1. THE PROGRAM
What is the program?
METS Ignited and KPMG Australia will work alongside established clients to identify their most pressing issues and areas of interest, crafting these into selection criteria for scale-up applications. The successful applicants will be fast-tracked through an intensive 12-week program of deep-dive workshops, mentoring and support from industry leaders, entrepreneurs and subject matter experts from Queensland, around Australia, and beyond – all designed to ignite a new wave of innovation within the sector.
Throughout the program, scale-ups will receive:
guidance on their business model and value proposition
insights into valuable skills for connecting and selling to corporate clients
connections with a pool of proven METS entrepreneurs from across Australia and abroad, and
advice on scaling their business.
At the end of the process, clients may engage commercially with the scale-ups to trial or adopt the scale-up's solution into their business, helping scale-ups develop the capabilities to better gain traction with corporate clients in the METS sector. A significant number of proof-of-concept, pilot contracts and implementation projects originated out of Energise 1.0 and 2.0; and we would anticipate similar outcomes this year.
What are the benefits of the program to scale-ups?
During the program you will receive training from trusted advisors from across KPMG’s service areas, as well as proven entrepreneurs and subject matter experts. Topics include, but not limited to business model, value proposition, strategy, selling to corporates, pitching to investors and building the capabilities of your business. In all, up to 40 KPMG employees were engaged in the delivery of Energise 2.0. You will also have the opportunity to pitch your ideas to customers, including leading national and global METS corporations.
Where will the program be run?
The program will be run from KPMG’s offices in Brisbane, located at:
Riparian Plaza, 71 Eagle St, Brisbane
Participants are expected to attend each session.
What level of commitment is expected of my business?
All scale-ups are expected to be present on one full day per week at KPMG’s Brisbane office over the 12 week program. Much of the value of the program will come from interaction with other program participants, and ad-hoc, one-on-one meetings with program presenter and mentors, rather than the more formal parts of the program. There is an expectation that participants will take advantage of these opportunities.
What is the structure of the program?
The program will be run over a 12 week period with a different focus each week on key issues facing scale-ups. Topics include business model, value proposition, strategy, selling to corporates, pitching to investors and building the capabilities of your business. Each week there will be one full day session. The session includes activities that range from external presenters, workshop activities, KPMG subject matter experts and video conferences with subject matter and industry experts. The structured program will be facilitated by KPMG Australia professionals with specialisation in each of the program topics. For the remainder of the week, participants will meet with internal and external mentors to discuss specific issues facing their business, as well as working on refining their business model and product offering. Participants will also have access to some of KPMG’s METS sector clients during structured meetings throughout the program.
Do I have to be there for the entire 12 week period?
Yes, although we understand things come up. What you put into the program will be what you get out…and it will be intense! There is a lot of learning and development you will be absorbing over 12 brief weeks, take advantage of it!
What happens at the end of the program?
The program culminates in two pitch presentations during the last week of the program. In the customer focused pitch, businesses will have the opportunity to pitch their business to form networks and engage with the METS industry in order to sell, progress or further commercialise their idea. The investor focused pitch allows participants to get their businesses in front of high net worth individuals, angel and institutional investors as well as venture capital representatives. Businesses will also participate in a graduation day at the end of the program to celebrate their achievements over the 12 week program.
Do I have to stay in Brisbane once the program ends?
No. You are free to run your business from anywhere you want to.
What type of mentors will be involved in Igniting METS accelerator?
METS Ignited and KPMG have secured a first class team of mentors which will be available to all participants. The Igniting METS accelerator mentors hail from our local and national community. The mentors comprise of both entrepreneurs and investors who have world-class expertise in scale-ups/SMEs in the METS and resources sector, as well as entrepreneurs from successful global scale-ups and experts that specialise in raising capital through global networks and markets.
Will I have any ongoing access to mentors and KPMG knowledge following the conclusion of the program?
Absolutely! After graduation, we will provide a degree of ongoing contact and support to ensure the best outcome for you. By this stage you will be able to leverage the network that you have built during the program to help support your development.
What does it cost to participate in the program?
Nothing. Zero. Nil. There is no cost to scale-ups to participate in the program. We’re here to help you get to where you want to go… we just hope that you remember us all when you’re the next Google!
Does Igniting METS accelerator take equity in my business?
No. Neither the Igniting METS accelerator team nor METS Ignited or KPMG will take equity (stock) in your business by participating in the Igniting METS accelerator program. Great, right?
If I am not from Brisbane, will you provide accommodation for the 12 week period?
No, we do not provide accommodation. However, participating scale-ups are eligible to receive $10,000 in sponsorship at no cost or equity to cover travel / relocation costs.
2. ELIGIBLE APPLICANTS
What types of businesses is Igniting METS accelerator looking for?
The program supports Australian companies with:
A technologically advanced product or service solution to the METS & resources sector or industries classified as supporting the METS & resources sector, that is distinctive and has a realistic prospect of becoming commercially successful i.e. a working model or prototype can be demonstrated, the product or service solution may have been tested and qualified and ready for implementation or is already proven
As this is a national pilot based in Queensland, priority will be given to applicants who:
are based in Queensland; or
are working on the relevant product or service with a Queensland based partner; and/or
can demonstrate that the commercialisation of the product or service has the potential to provide substantive benefit to the energy and resource industry in Queensland.
In the absence of customers, seed funding or development spend to date of at least AUD 200,000 with demonstrable evidence of customer validation of the value proposition for your product/service;
A founding core team in place (of at least two or more full-time staff); and
Willingness and ability to work from the KPMG Brisbane offices for one day per week during the 12 week program.
We have already taken some funding, can we still apply?
Why is Igniting METS accelerator only looking for post-seed funded companies or companies with revenues?
Quite simply, you can’t sell an ‘idea’ to a resources company and KPMG can’t advise a company that doesn’t exist!
Igniting METS accelerator is specifically targeting companies that are ‘further along’ i.e. have started testing the product in the market, have customers and (ideally) have generated revenue in the last 12 months. This is because the program is designed specifically to help high performing Australian businesses to fast track their growth. To do this, this would generally require a proven market product and a base level of customers.
Can I apply on my own?
No. Igniting METS accelerator is looking for a team of two or more people to participate in the program. Launching a scale-up and growing a business is too much work for one person!
Is there a maximum number of team members?
No. There is no limit on the number of team members that can attend the program (for a successful applicant). However, we suggest the team consist of two-three people and that each team member attend all program events to increase the outcomes for your business from the program.
Can you help with visa/immigration issues?
No. You and your team will need to organise in advance any necessary visas to participate in Igniting METS accelerator.
When will the final Igniting METS accelerator businesses be announced? How many will be selected?
It’s a rolling application process so we will get back to you pretty quickly. We don’t have a set quota as it depends on how many ‘game-changing’ scale-ups apply (such as yourself)! We anticipate we will select between five-eight businesses into the program.
3. APPLICATION AND SELECTION PROCESS
How do I apply?
Applications open May 30. Follow one of the links on this page and you will be redirected to an application platform - F6S.
Do I need to send a business plan?
No. We do however ask that you complete the application form, complete formal interviews (if required) and provide any other requested information. We do not wish to see your business plan, financial statements or marketing/product materials. We will provide you with a formal request for information if we require anything further from you or your team above and beyond the application process.
How do you choose which applicants to accept into the program?
All applications will be assessed against the Igniting METS accelerator program criteria by a selection panel made up of industry specialists, mentors, METS Ignited & KPMG Australia representatives, and program partners. If you are successful in progressing to the second round, you’ll then be asked to attend an interview (in person or online) with the Igniting METS accelerator interview panel. In this interview, we’ll want to know more about you and your team, your vision for global growth and why you want to participate in Igniting METS accelerator.
When will the final companies be announced?
Successful program participants will be announced in early July
How many companies will be selected?
We don’t have a set quota as it depends on how many ‘game-changing’ scale-ups and SMEs apply. In the 2015 program, Energise 1.0 selected eight teams and the Energise 2.0 program (operating in Brisbane & Perth) had 12 teams.
What is the deadline to apply for Igniting METS accelerator?
Applications for Igniting METS accelerator will close in July 28 2017.
Is my age a factor in the selection process?
No. The age of you or your team is not relevant to the application process. Both younger and older founders/business owners and team members are welcome to apply, as long as the company and the team meet the other criteria of Igniting METS accelerator.
Will contacting mentors, METS Ignited or KPMG Australia people help my application?
No, and please don’t try to call or email them. The mentors, METS Ignited and KPMG Australia people have already offered their free-time and support to the program – please do not try to get in contact with them as this will not help advance your application.
Can I still submit an application if I do not meet all the minimum criteria?
YES! If you do not satisfy all of the above criteria in the program requirements but still believe you are suitable for Igniting METS accelerator, we recommend you complete the online application and we will consider your application as part of the program selection process.
Will you sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement?
No. We won’t show your application to anyone outside the Igniting METS accelerator selection and interview team. As you would appreciate, we will see hundreds of applications, and some may include similar ideas. For this and other practical reasons, we are unable to sign a NDA.
Does Igniting METS accelerator retain or obtain any rights to my intellectual property developed during the program?
No. Igniting METS accelerator does not retain or obtain any rights to participants intellectual property developed through the program. The intellectual property developed by a participating company is retained by the company.
I’m concerned that if I apply, you won’t protect my intellectual property. Should I be worried about this?
No, we won’t share your application with anyone outside of the Igniting METS accelerator accelerator program team and partners involved in the selection process without your prior consent.