2nd EPFL-Wyss Center call for entrepreneurial projects

Are you developing a promising technology in the field of applied neuroscience or neurotechnology? Do you intend to bring it to the market? This joint EPFL-Wyss Center call for projects might be for you.

EPFL and the Wyss Center have joined forces to invest in the neurotechnologies of tomorrow, and accelerate the journey from bench to market. The partnership will provide funds to selected projects for up to 100 000 CHF per project , as well as access to the combined network and resources at both institutions. The total amount allocated for this initiative is 300 000 CHF.

What is the purpose of the grant?

The grant offers the opportunity to entrepreneurs to accelerate the development of their venture by funding the:

  • Product design, prototype development and/or minimum viable product (MVP) design and development of their future product or products
  • Design and development of compelling digital solutions (user interfaces/software development) for engaging user interactions
  • Technology de-risking and benchmarking (for example: further testing of the technology, comparative analyses, preclinical and clinical assessment, etc.)
  • Market assessment, startup strategy, business plan (for example: end-user feedback collection and analysis, competition analysis, market segmentation etc.)

Note: Funding can be used for requester’s salary, as long as the salary is commensurate with applicant’s level of education.

What are the pre-requisites to apply?

  • Projects should be clearly identified as being in one of the areas below:

Area A : Novel technology at the interface of neuroscience and the environment (architecture, design, social environment, home environment, etc.)

Area B : Novel technology to measure or modulate brain function (molecular technologies, non-invasive or minimally invasive hardware, wetware and/or software approaches to ’reading’ from and/or ’writing’ to the brain, digital therapeutics, etc.)

  • Projects should have a clear start-up vision
  • Projects should be led by an entrepreneur with the ability to relocate to Lausanne or Geneva for up to one year
  • Entrepreneur will be employed by EPFL while also strongly collaborating with the Wyss Center
  • Any new intellectual property generated during the project will be filed with EPFL’s Technology Transfer Office, with the intent to commercialize and enable the applicant to pursue his/her start-up vision

What are the selection criteria for success?

  • Technological innovation / novelty
  • Market impact (commercial potential and business model)
  • Entrepreneurial drive, engagement
  • Impact of the grant funding on achieving expected outcome(s) and accelerating the technology commercialization in a meaningful way

How do I apply?

Applicants must complete the online form and generate a pitch presentation, have it approved by the EPFL professor hosting the project, and send it to - startup@epfl.ch

Submissions will be reviewed by a selection committee comprising experts from the Wyss Center, EPFL and industry.

What is the deadline?

June 30th, 2021 - Last date to submit applications

July 7th, 2021 - Shortlist communicated

July 30th, 2021 - Final decisions communicated

I still have a question, who do I ask?

André Catana, Head of EPFL Start Up Unit - andre.catana@epfl.ch / 021 693 55 81

Isabel Casado, Business Developer, EPFL Start Up Unit - isabel.casado@epfl.ch / 021 693 77 01

Tracy Laabs, Chief Development Officer, Wyss Center - tracy.laabs@wysscenter.ch / 058 201 03 01

The grants under this call are co-funded by the Wyss Center and the EPFL Startup Unit.