Australia’s first renewable energy accelerator opens in Sydney

EnergyLab executive director Piers Grove and Jobs for NSW chief executive Karen Borg

Australia’s first renewable energy accelerator, EnergyLab, has opened in Sydney, in a bid to help entrepreneurs trying to commercialise their technology.

EnergyLab, which is located in the University of Technology Sydney, is backed by Climate-KIC and Jobs For NSW, which provided A$120,000 for the first year’s operating cost of the accelerator. It also has a co-working space and hub.

The EnergyLab accelerator has been structured to run for between 12 and 24 months to account for longer development times and larger investments needed to get energy start-ups launched.

Eight companies a year will be accepted into the accelerator in two rounds with each receiving $50,000 in seed capital.

The accelerator’s chief executive, Piers Grove said that, if the start-up was then able to raise further funding from external investors, EnergyLab would also participate in later rounds.

Grove said that Australia is uniquely placed to benefit from the growth in renewable energy.

“Australia is set up better than almost any other market on earth to capitalise on this,” Grove said.

“We have the natural conditions, a well-regulated market and globally we have the biggest uptake of solar power. We also have the best research available and Australia and NSW should be able to lead this industry and export innovations into other markets.”

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