The UNICEF Innovation Fund is looking to make up to 100K equity-free investments to provide early stage (seed) finance to for-profit technology start-ups that have the potential to benefit humanity.
- Must be registered as a private company in a UNICEF programme country;
- Are working on open source technology solutions or willing to be open-source under the following licenses or their equivalent: BSD (software), CERN (hardware), or CC-BY (content)
- Have an existing prototype of the solution with promising results from initial pilots
- The solution has the potential to positively impact society.
- The company does not have to be fully down the road of having a ready product, it can be at the very beginning. UNICEF’s funding is intended to seed an exploration within a company that already exists, that has a strong team and a prototype, and that can be profitable, and successful in the space of data-science.
- Seed funding. The Fund provides up to $100,000 in equity-free seed funding. The money is intended for applicants to validate and test their prototype, and get it to a stage where the company has proof that their solution works.
- Product and technology development. Selected startups will receive technical assistance from the UNICEF Ventures team to help validate and improve their solutions. Additionally, startups are plugged into a data-science focused cohort where they will be connected with other companies working on similar solutions, exchange lessons learned and share critical data.
- Business Growth. The Fund taps into a network of mentors who help startup teams develop their business model and strategy to grow their companies and ultimately profit.
- Data networks and platforms. UNICEF Ventures has a dedicated Data-Science team since 2014, developing partnerships, data platforms, and use cases. Through UNICEF’s network applicants can get access to world-class researchers, corporate partnerships, and additional data sets.
- Maximize impact for children. As the world’s leading organization for children, UNICEF has a network of experts and partners across its Country Offices who can provide geographically localized advice on applicants solution, assess its impact, and develop partnerships needed to reach more users.