Your Idea

You’ve been noodling this idea for some time. In your head it’s brilliant, it’s fresh, it’s innovative! How do you get it out there? Who can you ask for help, for feedback? Lucky you, we’re here to help! We apply the Lean Startup methodology to help you understand market opportunities and the path to commercialization.

Your Seed Money

Is your brilliant idea ready to become a business? You’ll need some seed money to move the idea forward. That’s where our program can help. Guided by the Lean Startup process and supported by a dynamic team of business professionals, Ideadvance Grants can help you search for a business model that can create, deliver and capture value for your idea.

Your Team

You’ll present your idea in a confidential, supportive environment where you can explore and refine the value of your idea. We have a dedicated New Idea Concierge who assists you in finding resources and navigating the initial funding process. We’re also experts at pep talks! New ventures can be challenging, so lean on us to support your efforts!

Who is Eligible for Ideadvance Grants?

Assistance is available for part-time or full-time staff, faculty and students who are part of the UW System. Applicants and young companies who have licensed technology from WiSys Technology Foundation or the UW-Milwaukee Research Foundation are also eligible. Those affiliated with UW-Madison are not eligible to be primary clients, but may contribute to projects with eligible applicants from other UW Campuses. We want to hear from you!  Reach out and we can discuss your team’s eligibility for the Ideadvance program.

Does My Idea Have to Be High Tech?

No! Although we welcome high tech ideas, you do not need to present a biotech or IT technology in order to get assistance. The types of eligible businesses are very broad, including ideas in agriculture, manufacturing, music production, textiles, art or business. The only restrictions are that your business cannot be real estate, direct consumer retail or a hospitality business, including restaurants. If your idea creates jobs, is an eligible business, and contributes to Wisconsin’s “knowledge economy,” we’re here to help.

How do I start?

To get started, contact the New Idea Concierge by email or at 608.263.3315. Together, we can explore if Ideadvance Funding is right for you.  The New Idea Concierge will work with you to identify first-step resources and help you prepare a competitive proposal. To learn more about our Concierge and staff, check out our team.

Our next Stage 1 & 2 applications are due July 24, 2015 at 5PM CST. July 2015 Stage 1 Proposal Guidelines are available now. To get started, contact us today by email or by phone at 608.263.3315.
UW Extension IdeaAdvance Lean Startup link