A new oil and gas technology accelerator has been created in Aberdeen, targeting 100 start-ups and 200 small to medium sized companies(SMEs).
The accelerator, called TechX and set up by the public-funded The Oil & Gas Technology Centre, will run three programs – Pioneers, Market Entry and Ventures.
The Pioneers program, in which BP Ventures has agreed to be a strategic partner, provides up to £100,000 for start-ups with new technology ideas. The funding involves no equity or payback, and the developer retains all intellectual property.
In addition to the core funding and support from TechX, BP Ventures will offer a small, exclusive group of Pioneers a further £100,000 of funding each, as well as dedicated access to BP’s facilities and expertise.
The Market Entry program offers up to £500,000 funding and access to customers to help SMEs fast track a route to market.
Participants on both programs will benefit from the support of experienced business mentors, co-working space, forward-thinking business partners, rapid prototyping, test facilities, large scale field trials, and showcase events.
The application process is now open for the Pioneer and Market Entry programs, which will beging in April 2018.
The application process for Pioneers will close on 7 February 2018, with places confirmed in March 2018. Applications for the Market Entry program can be made throughout the year.
The Ventures programme, being run in partnership with Deep Science Ventures, will launch in 2018 and seeks to fill technology gaps. Harnessing creativity and deep science thinking, we will address future challenges in oil and gas, and the low carbon economy.
David Millar, TechX Director, said: “Our mission is to find new technology companies that can help unlock the full potential of our industry – helping them take their solutions to market – faster. We’re offering a new generation of entrepreneurs unrivalled funding and support to accelerate innovation.
“We’ve put together three exciting programs and have almost 100 experienced mentors and partner companies on-board to provide expert advice and support to the start-ups and SMEs carefully selected to take part in TechX.
“Now is the time for us to recapture the entrepreneurial spirit that created the UK oil and gas industry to identify innovative new technologies to make the oil and gas industry fit for the 21st century. I’m confident TechX will play an important role.”
The Oil & Gas Technology Centre was established in October 2016 with £180 million funding as part of the public-funded Aberdeen City Region Deal. With almost 70 memberships, the Centre has approved investment of more than £19 million in 30 projects in partnership with industry since it launched in February 2017.