Advance is a bespoke programme of relationship-building and business growth modules for entrepreneurs who are ready to scale and grow internationally.
Find out more about the Advance programme below:
- Assess where you and your business are
- Boost your confidence and soft-skills
- Enhance your leadership and entrepreneurial skills
- Strengthen your business strategy
- Improve your engineering processes
- Build UK networks, collaborations, and partnerships
- Learn to measure and communicate your impact and outcomes
- Connect with an exceptional and likeminded community of Alumni
The first Advance programme kicked-off in 2020, followed by two more cohorts and with a new cohort expected to start on January 2024. We have supported entrepreneurs from Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, South Africa, Thailand, Türkiye, and Vietnam.
Since 2020, the LIF Advance Alumni Community has achieved the following:
- 38 entrepreneurs have completed the programme. 88% are still working on the same innovation
- 70% of innovators have patents on their product
- Over £3m raised after attending the programme, and generating £120K on average revenue per year
- On average, by innovator, 1,4 partnerships have been formed in the UK
- 3 entrepreneurs have relocated, and are now established and based in the UK
- Post-programme, on average, innovators have created 9 jobs positions
In January 2024, we will be starting to create a supportive community with a new cohort of entrepreneurs from around the globe. The programme will begin with introduction sessions which foster a creative synergy within the group. Innovators will explore and assess the stage their business is at and the level of their business skills.
Participants will be assigned to one of two groups and the following themes will be introduced:
- Pre-programme diagnostic towards equalizing and reach common ground
- Identify your biggest challenges
- Validate that the business model is pertinent and fit for a global scale
Training will take place from February to June 2024. There will be on-line and in-person sessions, structured in three modules that will leverage each participants skills as well as help map the connections they want to create in the UK. Alongside this, participants will receive mentoring and 1-2-1's with experts, tailored to their specific business needs.
The programme offers the following modules.
- Business model deep dive
- Deep stakeholder mapping and strategic partnerships
- Story-telling, conflict resolution, and soft-skill enhancement
On-line and in-person sessions for entrepreneurs led by experts on:
- Building high-impact teams
- Solving challenges
- Why and when investment
- IP protection
Masterclasses and mentoring and advisory board input
Innovators will harness diverse modules, bespoke masterclasses, mentoring sessions, and the opportunity to create their own advisory board.
- The importance of why and when investment
- Create marketing strategy, know your customers and communicate better to them
- Build a solid sales pipeline
- Improve your engineering processes
- Solve day-to-day challenges
UK residential in July 2024
Participants will have the opportunity to:
- Travel to the UK for an in-person residential
- Participate in training and network-building events
- Pitch to an audience of investors and ecosystem leaders
Participants benefits include:
- Access to the LIF community and events.
- Life-long mentoring, training, and networking opportunities via the dedicated LIF community platform
Outcomes from Advance 2024
Innovators will have achieved the following:
- Enhanced their soft-skills and confidence
- Liaised and engaged with a network of contacts
- Designed bespoke pitch-decks to use with different audiences
- Developed a deeper understanding of their IP, products, and engineering processes
- Built a supportive community
- Strengthened their teams
- Developed an understanding of the market and future opportunities
- Created metrics and impact measurements
Women are encouraged to apply.
1. Applicants must be working on an innovation that meets any or both of the themes. We are encouraging members of the LIF alumni community (LIF 1-7, LIF Global 22-23) or the APEI alumni community (Cycles 1-9), as well as other entrepreneurs working on exceptional solutions that meet the criteria from the following countries: Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, Türkiye, Vietnam.
2. Have progressed the innovation with which they are applying to the programme to at least TRL Level 7. The innovators must show evidence of a prototype in the application.
• Inclusive Economies
• Medical Technologies
4. Have progressed the innovation with which they are applying to the programme to at least TRL Level 7. The innovators must show evidence of a prototype in the application.
5. The applicant’s innovation can be any new product, technology, or service, which must address the following themes:
- Inclusive Economies
- Medical Technologies
6. Have established a business around their innovation. Applicants will be required to provide evidence of business incorporation in their application. Candidates must be the original innovator and own majority of the shares in the company created.
7. The innovation should have the potential to benefit the applicant’s country, and global benefit, in terms of improving social welfare and driving economic development.
8. The primary application of the innovation must NOT be in the defence, military, or fossil fuel-based energy sectors.
9. Applicants must be able to commit to Advance for a minimum of 10 hours during the ‘welcome week’ of the onboarding and beginning of the remote training (early-January), and at least 20 days for training and mentoring between January and July, including a minimum of 12 days for the UK Residential in June-July 2024. This implies being able to secure availability to attend the programme if selected. The Academy will provide documentation on Advance counting as training or continuous personal development if required once you have joined the cohort.
10. Applicants must be able to commit to travel internationally. All costs associated with the Advance programme will be paid for by the Royal Academy of Engineering, with the exception of visas and travel insurance. Participants will be asked to purchase a travel insurance covering as a minimum: GP access, medical emergencies, and personal accidents. The Academy will consider covering the costs of any caring needs related to travel on a case-by-case basis.
11. Applicants will not need to cover any costs associated with the training programme, the residential phase in the UK.
12. Candidates will need to demonstrate fluency in English to participate. This will be a key assessment metric. Make sure to write your application and upload materials fully in English to avoid being unable to gain a place on the programme. Please note that the residential programme will be conducted entirely in English.
14. Applicants must be aligned to the Academy values, progressive leadership, diversity and inclusion, excellence everywhere, collaboration first, and creativity and innovation.
15. Applicants must be interested in exploring partnership, funding, or other development opportunities in the UK innovation ecosystem, or establishing their business in the UK.
The LIF Community works with a range of engineering and technology entrepreneurs. We have supported innovators and researchers to start, scale-up, accelerate, spin-out, and grow their businesses across the world, as well as re-located to the UK. All our programmes are offered free of charge and we take zero equity.