IncStart Accelerator Program

This cohort-based program jump starts early-stage business incubators linked
to universities. The goal is increasing their effectiveness with their startups
and enabling a positive impact on their communities.


We match 15,000+ vetted university-linked startups, though a network of 700+ business incubators and accelerators in over 70 countries, to fill corporates most important future needs

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A program to accelerate business
incubators and accelerators

INCStart is designed to support incubators through three stages of growth:

Stage 1) Needs assessment and planning
Stage 2) Program implementation and operations
Stage 3) Growth and sustainability

Having launched, operated, and coached world class university-linked incubation programs around the world, The IncStart team has learned that these programs come in many flavors and are part of larger ecosystems- within their academic institutions and within their regions. Each incubator has unique needs and goals. This means it is not effective to chart a general, "one size fits all" path to growth.

Focused around a series of face-to-face workshops and using a supportive mentorship model, the IncStart Accelerator program has been developed by industry experts through an international alliance between UBI Global in Sweden, Oulu University of Applied Sciences in Finland, Ryerson University in Canada, and The Pivotal Point in Canada. The group represents leading expertise in positioning, launching, monitoring and growing university-linked incubation programs.

Throughout the program, renowned practitioners and researchers from UBI Global’s
innovation community provide hands-on advice, best-practice examples,
and practical guidelines.

The focus is how to make incubators and accelerators self-sustaining, effective, and efficient. Coaching includes how to improve startup success and develop thriving innovation ecosystems so that participants:

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Gain a thorough understanding of the benefits of business incubation

Essential pillars of their surrounding innovation ecosystems, successful incubation programs serve important economic, social, and political purposes.

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Become part of an interactive learning community of your international peers

The benefits of participation do not end with the completion of the program; all are invited to become members of UBI Global for continued access of original resources, events, and tools and collaboration opportunities.

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Identify and address country and organization-specific challenges and opportunities

Incubation programs operate in different contexts and cater to a host of different visions and demands. Understanding and aligning these different sets of needs is a crucial first step in designing successful incubation programs.

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Develop a roadmap to establish or improve (independent or joint) incubators or accelerators

Using a milestone-based action plan, INCStart provides strategic and operational know-how for key decision makers, staff, and administrators on how to start, run, and grow their incubation programs.

The IncStart Team

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Valerie Fox

Innovation Consultant, Pivotal Point

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Dr. Richard Lachman

Director of Zone Learning, Ryerson University

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Dr. Blair Stevenson

Head of degree program M.Sc., Entrepreneurship Oulu University of Applied Sciences

Apply to join the IncStart

Learn the answers to the following questions: What activities are vital at each stage of growth? What support systems are needed? What metrics should be prioritized?
We invite 20 individuals representing business incubation programs to apply to this unique accelerator program. We welcome applications from around the world!
Participant program criteria
  •   You are linked to a higher education institution
      You are in your early stages: 0-2 years old
      You are already working with startup clients
      You want to grow your reach and success rate

Activate Your Innovation through IncStart and learn how to make your incubator grow and succeed!

  • New tech jobs created


  • 759

    Millions in revenue earned
  • 28

    Millions in equity capital raised
  • 759

    Events held through I-Inc
  • 800

    Companies accessing programs or services

Program hosted by I-INC

The innovate incubate network of Canada (I-INC) is a pan-Canadian, internationally connected netowrk of high-performance university-linked accelrations and incubators. I-INC creates an ecosystem for the effecient commercialization of University based and science and technology-enabled innovation

I-INC was founded in 2014 by Ryerson University, Simon Fraser University (SFU) and the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) with the support of the Canada Accelerator Incubator Program (CAIP), delivered by the National Research Council—Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP), which awarded funding to best-in-class Canadian accelerators and incubator.