The Water Research Commission (WRC) of South Africa and the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) are launching the Water Seed Fund for innovation-oriented projects conducted by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the water sector.
The objective of the WRC TIA Water Seed Fund is to support pre-seed and seed activities with the intention to develop innovations into next stage “investor fundable “opportunities. With this funding, the WRC and TIA intend to increase the rate of commercialization of water-related intellectual property (IP) generated from South African research and development.
- Amount: Up to R 200 000 (two hundred thousand Rands);
- Funding period: Maximum 12 -18 months.
- Development of initial product, process (prototype development);
- Sourcing of intellectual property opinions;
- Detailed primary market research;
- Refining and implementing designs;
- Conducting field studies to test the assumptions made about the technology, market, and/ or customer needs;
- Piloting, and technology scale-up;
- Techno-economic evaluation studies;
- Supporting of certification activities and specification sheet development;
- Production of market samples and/or associated testing;
- Business plan development.
- The following activities will not be funded:
- Salary contributions to members who are key investigators on the project and/or who form part of the general operating budget staff;
- Early-stage research projects;
- Equipment, except for specialized equipment that is within the budget constraints and required to enable qualifying activities;
- Working capital; and
- Operational costs not associated with the project.
Applicants must meet the following requirements:
- Must be a South African institution or company registered with the CIPC.
- Must be South African citizens with valid identity documents.
- Have a locally developed technology that responds to South Africa’s water challenges.
- Have proof of concept.
- Must have protected or protectable Intellectual property.
- Have potential for greater economic and social impact through e.g. local manufacture and job creation.
- Have the likelihood of receiving follow-on funding from TIA (i.e. pipeline) or any other funder once the Seed Fund goals have been achieved.
- All primary technology development activities must be operated within South Africa.
For more information, visit http://www.wrc.org.za/opportunities/