NRMA launches accelerator program: offers up $300,000 to start-ups

Sarah Homewood
By Sarah Homewood | 7 October 2014

The National Roads & Motorists’ Association (NRMA) is offering up $300,000 and access to its 2.4 million strong customer base to start ups to be involved in its inaugural Jumpstart program.

Partnering with technology accelerator Slingshot, Jumpstart is open to start ups and already established tech business that think their ideas could benefit both The NRMA and its customers, with the only parameter being that the ideas generated need to fall within four categories, Smart Services, Connected Cars, Connected Members and Member Lifestyle.

Peter Khoury, an NRMA spokesperson said that as a business operating in the mobility space it ahs to embrace change now, otherwise it faces the possibility of being left behind.

“If you look at how mobility has changed in the last five to 10 years, I'd probably say its changed more than it has in the 100 years before that and when you operate in a space like that you either innovate or you die,” he told AdNews.

“Increasingly the NRMA is an organisation that is looking to be an innovator, to ensure that we stay relevant to our members and looking to keep pace with the rather dramatic change in the industry that we exist, so for us becoming part of this space just made sense.”

The ten successful applicants to the start-up program will be involved in a structured 3-month program of mentoring as well as a 3 month incubation period, have access to a free co-working space, NRMA's brands and senior marketing  staff, as well as potential access to the 2.4 million NRMA customers and $30,000 in seed funding each.

The successful applicants in the scaled-up category will receive six months of mentorship from Slingshot and the NRMA’s senior management, the same potential access to the 2.4 million NRMA customers, plus a contracted outcome to become a NRMA commercial supplier and access to NRMA executives.

The NRMA joins beer brand Hahn, which in September announced the launch of an incubator. Start upa ctitivy within corporate brands is becoming more common. Earlier this year Mondelez put forward five of its brands, Cadbury Dairy Milk, Marvellous Creations, Cadbury Favourites, Philadelphia cream cheese and belVita breakfast biscuits to work with five start-ups for a 90-day program to speed up and scale existing mobile ideas. Watch the latest AdNews TV from MLab where marketers talk about the opportunities and challenges of working with start-ups.

Jumpstart submissions close on Friday 14 November 2014. Successful applicants will join the program for 12 weeks from 1 December to 13 March 2015.

A roadshow of four presentation evenings will be held next week in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Newcastle to introduce Jumpstart to interested entrepreneurs.

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