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Initial funding of the university incubator during the foundation phase is usually provided by founders and sponsors of the incubator. Different mission, goals and wider purpose of the university incubator attract different (potential) co-founders and sponsors. According to the World Bank, “particularly in the initial stages (of incubator), public sector funding is critical to ensure that incubators become operational” (The World Bank, 2010). The research results of our survey of entrepreneurship support organizations confirmed the importance of initial funding since the most frequently mentioned hindrance by respondents was the availability of funding for their organization, both for university and non-university incubators (SUPER survey report 2016).

Even for “big name” universities it takes a long time, and a lot of luck to reach a self-sustaining model. The majority of start-up incubators and accelerators were funded by their university hosts, or leverage mixed sources of funds, including:

· Corporate sponsorship (for example a prize fund for the winner of a “pitch day”)
· Public funds
· Economic development agencies
· Alumni donors

Source: Isis Enterprise study, Oxford University Innovation

Potential sponsors of the university incubator (in addition to their university hosts) in its foundation phase may include organizations such as economic development agencies on local, regional or national level, NGOs, business organizations, alumni donors or other investors, who / which share the wider purpose and goals of the university incubator. For further information about sponsors please read the block Stakeholders – Who are potential partners for collaboration?

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This is the first version of SUPER Toolkit.
As we constantly try to improve of SUPER Toolkit, we appreciate your feedback and comments. New improved version of it will we available here in June 2018.
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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This web site and its contents reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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