How to Apply

Applications for the 2021 cohort will open in early summer. 

Find out more and apply

Applications for the 2021 cohort will open in in the early summer with the 5 month programme starting in October 2021.   

The Francis Crick Institute has launched Knowledge Quarter (KQ) Labs, an intensive accelerator programme for early stage data-driven health startups. 

Startups with the potential to make an impact on global health outcomes will have access to unrivalled support and resources. Successful applicants will be provided with a £40k convertible loan to get their startup to the next stage. 

The 16-week programme will be delivered by the Francis Crick Institute and a number of world-leading partners thansk to funding from LifeArc. The programme will help founders to validate their ideas and put their startups on a path to receive further investment from Government grants, venture capital and other sources. The course includes pre-accelerator, accelerator and post-accelerator activities designed to take founder teams from idea to Series A and beyond commercial launch. 

All selected startup teams will have access to the KQ Academy, a network of global experts in all aspects of entrepreneurship, health sector knowledge, data science and investment strategies.  This network will provide workshops and mentoring to support the cohort helping them to maximise opportunities and address challenges.

Key 2020 dates:

  • Applications close 1 September 2020 (midday GMT) 
  • Interviews on 29 and 30 September 2020
  • Programme begins on 26 October 2020
  • Programme concludes on 4 March 2021 with a pitch to investors



The selection process will be open to startup teams meeting the following criteria: 

  • A focus on areas which have the potential to have a significant impact on health, and where use of data is a core part of the business model
  • Two or more founders or team members
  • A Minimum Viable Product, prototype or proof of concept
  • An early stage company (pre-series A)
  • A team based in the UK


Applicants should send a start-up deck of up to 12 slides covering:

  • The problem you are aiming to solve
  • Your solution
  • Technology (including IP)
  • Market opportunity
  • Competitors, including other approaches to solving this problem
  • Business model - how you will make money and route to commercialisation
  • Traction (what evidence do you have so far for interest in, or potential uptake of, your product? What funds, if any, have you raised so far?)
  • Your team
  • Financials (what will you do with the funding? How much money will you need to achieve your key milestones?)
  • Roadmap (include your key milestones)
  • Exit for investors


For further information and to apply, please visit the Crick's KQ Labs webpages. For any queries, please contact the Crick Partnership Manager, Dr Corinne Hanlon.