Get ready to RISE

The RISE Accelerator program is designed for startups and SMEs in India and Australia.

We are partnering with startups and SMEs who have mature and innovative technology and are starting or considering overseas expansion.

We’ll help you navigate early steps in a new region, validate and adapt technology and research overseas, fast-track connections to the right partners, customers and talent, and build credibility to succeed in international markets.

Program overview:

• 9-month program split into two phases: Accelerate Phase and Pilot Phase
• 18-week Accelerate Phase: e-learning and funded in-person travel within Australia and India
• 18-week Pilot Phase: test and or demonstrate your technology or solution in your target market
• Grant: subject to achievement of program milestones up to A$75,000 for Australian organisations, or INR 4 million for Indian organisations
• Mentoring & Connections: dedicated Expert-in-Residence and Domain Experts guide and mentor startups’ and SMEs’ cross-border planning and activities, and provide network connections.


What you’ll get out of the program

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The learning curriculum will help you navigate early steps in a new region, validate and adapt technology and research overseas, fast-track connections to the right partners, customers and talent, and build credibility to succeed in international markets. We’ll also explore a theme-specific curriculum.

You will be eligible for a non-equity grant subject to achievement of program milestones. Non-equity grants will be up to A$75,000 for Australian organisations, or INR 4 million for Indian organisations.

Most of the learning elements of the program will be delivered virtually, with key in-person experiences to meet cohort peers and immersive learning. One representative will be funded to participate in three in-person experiences across the nine months – twice within your home country, and once to your target market.

We’ll support you to validate, adapt and scale your technologies overseas. We’ll help you understand how to develop and protect your IP across borders.

We’ll support you to broker pilot collaborations with established businesses or institutions in your target market to provide you with testing and demonstration opportunities.

We’ll connect you with potential end customers, providing opportunities for them to be involved in pilots and testing processes.

The program promotes investment opportunities, supporting due diligence and identifying high-potential startups for investment. Program participation enhances credibility and offer investors full transparency.

You will have a dedicated expert-in-residence to provide tailored and practical support. You’ll also have access to a pool of experienced subject matter experts from across regulatory, technical and industry fields.

At the end of the program, we will continue to foster ongoing connections between cohorts, mentors, investors and industry experts through.


What time commitment is needed

You will need to allocate around six hours each week. This includes time spent participating in live curriculum activities, self-paced learning and engaging with experts. There will be an additional time commitment for in-person travel experiences and Pilot Phase activities.

A typical week may include:

  • two hours of practical sessions
  • two hours of offline work and preparing plans and documents
  • one hour of mentoring with your dedicated expert-in-residence or subject matter experts
  • one hour of informal check-in and collaboration.

Delivery schedule

We anticipate the following delivery schedule for our next intake of startups. Dates will be confirmed as part of the onboarding process.

Program phases

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  • Applications reviewed by panel of experts in challenge areas and each country (January 2024)
  • Startups selected and onboarding commences (February 2024)

The Accelerate Phase is an 18-week program of online and in-person curriculum learning that is aligned to cross-border readiness and theme-specific learnings. It will be delivered in a sprint format and feature the following activities:

  • learning modules to support overseas expansion, including cross-border trade and operations navigation, technology validation and adaptation, connections and networks and credibility building
  • guest speakers, including entrepreneurs and investors, industry representatives and other trade-related experts
  • support to plan market entry and pilot activities in the target market
  • regular access to a dedicated Expert-in-Residence and Domain Experts from both India and Australia
  • domestic and international travel and in-person experiences
  • introductions and support brokering relationships with potential Pilot Phase partners, including global corporations, research institutes, local industry and others
  • introductions to investors and the broader investment community
  • in-person/virtual showcasing and networking opportunities
  • support to execute Pilot Phase activities in the target market.

The Pilot Phase occurs in the second half of the Program and is based on the curriculum learning, mentoring and coaching, and the planning documents developed in the Accelerate Phase.

Each Organisation will determine Pilot Phase activities that will best support their target market entry. The activities will be defined in consultation with the Expert-in-Residence and Domain Experts and be based on the Organisation’s situation, technology and readiness. They may include:

  1. Matching with a cross-border industry partner to test and pilot your technology or solution.
  2. In-country market research to further your understanding of the international market for your technology or product.
  3. Undertaking research and development with a research organisation either in their home country or target market.

Prior to the Pilot Phase, Organisations will be provided with opportunities for in-person or virtual showcasing and networking to help identify a suitable pilot partner, as well as assistance to develop market entry and Pilot Phase plans and budgets.


How to apply

To apply to participate in the RISE Accelerator you must meet the program eligibility criteria.

You will need to complete an online application and provide us with information about your startup or SME.

You can also read our list of frequently asked questions for answers to any questions you may have about the Program.

Applications for Round 1 have now closed. Subscribe to our mailing list for updates on future rounds.


Key documents

Australian applicants

Indian applicants


Still have questions?

If you have queries about the program you can:

  • Email the CSIRO RISE delivery team (for enquiries from Australian startups and SMEs)
  • Email the AIM RISE delivery team (for enquiries from Indian startups and SMEs)