Summer Accelerator

Got a new business idea that needs a development boost over the summer? Join our 3-month programme, where we help you fast-track the commercial development of your idea and give you the chance to win £5,000

Applications for the next cohort will open in June 2021

What is the Summer Accelerator?

The Summer Accelerator is a brand new programme run in partnership with Imperial College Business School from July until September. It’s the perfect opportunity for students looking to get more out of their summer and give their business idea a big developmental push.
You’re looking at an intensive 12 weeks of mentoring, business coaching, peer-to-peer support and monthly feedback sessions. All with a £500 grant for each team PLUS a possible extra £1,000.

At the end of the programme in September, we’ll have a presentation where the teams get to show us how their idea has taken shape, with the standout team taking home the big cash prize of £5,000!

Learning outcomes

By the end of this programme you’ll have learnt how to:
Conduct customer discovery research
Interpret customer/tester/peer/mentor feedback
Provide peer-to-peer support and feedback
Develop a ‘fit-for-market’ product
Create a post-programme action plan

Entry requirements

  1. Your team must have between two and five individuals.
  2. Your team must include at least one student or alumni (within three years of graduation) from Imperial College Business School.
  3. Your team lead must be an Imperial College London student or recent alumni (graduated no earlier than 2017).
  4. You must have already made clear and demonstratable progress in customer discovery and toward proof of concept or prototype stage.
  5. You must not have previously received any seed funding.

Key dates

Check back for key dates when applications open in June 2021!


Can I submit several projects?
Yes! As long as you’ve done the required research on them all (see our Entry Requirements 👆) you can submit several ideas.

How advanced do ideas have to be to apply?
You have to show that you’ve made clear and demonstrable progress (e.g. customer discovery work, proof of concept, prototyping) to show that your idea is suitable for this programme. We can’t accept brand new ideas.

Do you take any equity in my team/company?
No. We’re in this to help you, and have designed this programme to give you the skills and support so you can create your own company and carve out your own future.

When can I expect a reply regarding my application?
We aim to let all our all applicants know if they’ve been accepted onto the programme by 5.00 PM on 26 June.

I’ve submitted my application, but haven't received a confirmation email. Should I have?
No. We don’t want to clutter up your inbox, so we don’t send confirmation emails. You’ll have seen a ‘Thank you’ message pop up when you submitted your application and that’s it! No further action needed.

What are the Terms and Conditions?
You can find the programme terms and conditions here.

Can I speak to someone about my application?
Yes, if you have any questions please get in touch with Euan Bell:

Meet the Alumni

Refund Giant
Refund Giant

The fast, hands-free VAT refunds app for overseas travellers.


Coillection is a new platform that connects households producing high volumes of waste cooking oil with oil collectors via domestic collections.


“The Summer Accelerator allowed us to get perspectives from different people – that outside feedback was massively useful in getting us to explore different paths and help us move our idea forward.”

Huzaifa Patel, Remote Sense

How to apply

Applications for next year open in June 2021. Sign-up for our newsletter so you don’t miss any VCC announcements!

If you have any questions please email Euan Bell: