The increasing numbers of applications for the AWI Ventures’ Fintech accelerator program are a clear testament to the value of the innovation in the financial service sector, the firm believes.

“The number of applications from start-ups that are looking to be part of AWI Ventures’ second fintech accelerator program have grown by 50%, since the launch of the first program, earlier in the year,” said AWI Ventures’ Toby Heap.

The announcement of the staggering number of applications for the company’s program followed a report that was published in the KPMG and the Committee for Sydney, which was highlighting the city’s potential of becoming a hub for this blooming sector.

“When we launched the AWI Ventures Fintech accelerator earlier this year, we wanted to see Sidney established as the Fintech center for the region and we are starting to see traction on that front,” said Heap.

“We are firm believers that there is significant latent potential in Sydney’s financial services industry-with the right political and financial support, we are certain that we can grow our industry to match our overseas counterparts. After all, financial services are clearly strength for Australia and in particular for Sidney, so we should harness this and develop our strength further with technology,” he added.

The AWI Ventures Accelerator program aims the industry and even the environment with the regulatory support that startups offering financial services need in order to thrive. This will be the program’s second intake. The startups from the first intake will be graduating with a sleek demo at the AWI/ASX fintech expo, which we be on November 27th at the ASX. AWI Ventures accelerator programs usually runs for 6 months and 4-6 teams (usually 2-3 entrepreneurs in each team) are picked to join the program for each intake. Selected teams will be drawn from across Australia, and will then be based at AWI’s Sidney office for the entire duration of the accelerator program.

“Ideally we want teams that are cross functional with at least one hands-on technologist(coder or engineer) and at least one member with significant and relevant financial services experience however we will consider every individual or team that applies,” said Heap.

Heap added, “Applicants will need to demonstrate their ability to deliver a working minimum viable product and initial proof of market within 4-5 months with the aim of raising a series A round of capital within 6-12 months.”

  • The selected startups will receive significant benefits from being part of the program including”
  • $100,000 in investment with a minority returns for 10% equity share.
  • The startups will be housed in AWI Ventures central Sidney CBD offices alongside other startups.
  • AWI will assist each startup to establish a well professionally run business with effective administrative support and services
  • The program will run regular dinners, lunches, prototyping, pitching, and one-on-one sessions.
  • The startups will have access to AWI Venture’s network of industry leaders in financial services and technology

AWI Ventures also announced that they will hold a direct-to-consumer financial service expo on 27th November.


Nicholas O’Donaghue, “Record Numbers Seek Fintech Startup Support,” Money Management, October 20, 2014,