For Founders

The Tech For Good Programme
We provide ambitious early-stage founders with the investment, support, expertise and networks to launch and build a successful tech for good venture.

Applications for our Spring 2022 are open.
Supercharging tech for good ventures
Twice a year we provide investment of £30k and a 12-week programme for budding tech for good founders. Talk to our team about investment and support to launch and scale your business.
What's in it for you
Investment
£30,000 in cash for 7% equity in your business
Learning
A tailored three-month programme of workshops, talks and 1:1 mentoring
Life-long support
Life-long support and the opportunity for follow-on funding
Peer support
Valuable advice and support from a large community of tech for good founders
Mentoring
Regular connections with our network of 70+ mentors and advisors. Checkout who they are here
Connections
Introductions and 1:1 meetings with investors and industry experts
Talk to our team
We really value time spent getting to know founders applying to BGV - no warm intro needed. Simply register your interest to speak with us about your tech for good venture and the support we offer below.
Our investment approach
We back ambitious founders building businesses driving positive impact at scale. Our sweet spot is investing early and we continue to provide you with support and investment up to Series A.
£30k investment + 12-week Tech for Good programme
We invest in early-stage founders (ranging from pre-product to beta) through our programme equipping you with the support and tools to help you build an impact-driven tech for good businesses.
01
Life-long support
We're in it for life. After the 12-week programme and our initial investment, you'll join our growing portfolio community of talented tech for good entrepreneurs.
02
Follow-on funding
We provide follow-on investment to select companies in our portfolio as part of bigger rounds.
03
Our investment themes
We invest in tech for good companies that drive significant positive impact for people and the planet. Our investment thesis is centred around the idea that the companies we invest in contribute to a sustainable planet, a better society and healthy lives.
A Sustainable Planet
It's no secret that we're in a climate emergency, but we believe that visionary businesses committed to protecting the environment can help ensure a sustainable and thriving planet. We want to see innovative, yet affordable systems and solutions in the following areas:

Resource efficiency and circular economy, responsible consumption and production, sustainable agriculture, transportation and infrastructure.

A Better Society
We want to see radical approaches that work towards creating a society in which everybody has equal access and opportunity. There are many challenges for this to become a reality, but to us that means huge scope for truly exciting and impactful ventures, especially in the following areas:

Education and life-long learning, employability and fair work, poverty reduction, integrated and inclusive communities, civic participation and social justice.

As part of our ongoing work with Resolution Ventures, we're looking for WorkerTech ventures, which are businesses creating a fairer future of work.
Healthy Lives
Every person deserves to live a healthy life and new products and services are needed to effectively deliver on this. We also believe that health depends as much on prevention as it does on cure. These are some of the areas we're excited to back solutions in:


Health and social care, preventative care, mental and emotional wellbeing, healthy lifestyles and ageing population.
What we're looking for
Alongside our investment themes, there are five key aspects we look to be inherent in all the businesses we back:
1
Innovative application of technology
The use of tech should either allow for greater potential to scale, or facilitate a new way of approaching the problem.
2
Scalability
The business must have the potential to both positively impact millions of lives and reach a £100m enterprise value within 10 years time.
3
Intentionality and purpose
Products and services must be developed with the specific intention of creating positive social or environmental impact.
4
Direct impact
We look for ventures that have a direct impact on people and the planet. Alternatively if your solution is targeting a broader systemic change then we expect to see a credible hypothesis of how impact will be achieved.
5
Reducing inequality
No matter the sector, ventures should always be working towards narrowing the gap of inequality, this often means focusing on those that are underserved and underrepresented.
Meet us at events
We host regular events for founders to learn more about what we offer and get to know the BGV team.
Come to our virtual WorkerTech meetup
If you're Manchester-based (or not, since it's virtual), join us on 7th December for a meetup to explore a fairer future of work and meet WorkerTech founders based in Manchester.

Sign up here
Join our monthly virtual Q&A sessions
This is your chance to get to know BGV, learn more about what we offer and get insights on what we're looking for.

Sign up here
Londoners, come to our in-person Q&A
We're hosting an in-person Q&A on 13th December in East London. Come mix and mingle with founders and get to know the BGV team.

Sign up here
Sign up for virtual
drop-in sessions
We run a number of drop-in sessions to talk to founders about their tech for good ventures. We have limited spaces available.

Register your interest here
Check our application criteria
Before you submit an application on Typeform, check that you meet our requirements to join the BGV programme:
You have an innovative idea that uses technology to address a social or environmental challenge
You're motivated and committed to building a scalable for-profit business that will both radically improve millions of lives and be commercially successful
You're actively building a team with a strong understanding of the problem you are tackling, the market you'll be operating in and relevant technical experience
Your team is available to take part in the 12-week programme
Your venture is at an early-stage and has been trading for less than two years old
You have the right to work in the UK (though we have a bit of flexibility with our virtual programme)
How our application process works
Applications open
Applications are open from 24th November and you can sign up to a number of events to learn more about what we offer.
Applications close
Applications close on 9th January 2022, 23.59. Please make sure to submit your application on time.
Selection + Interviews
We select 40-50 companies for interviews that will run virtually in the first week of February 2022.
Due diligence + Investment offer
Following the interview, we'll reach out to teams for any remaining questions and get back to all teams with feedback by the end of February. Successful teams will receive an investment offer from BGV.
Start of Spring 2022 programme
The Spring 2022 programme will kick off in April 2022.
Hear from our portfolio
"BGV have provided us with high quality, effective and timely support at every stage of our business' development. There is no one else like BGV in London's funding landscape."


How Do I?
Spring 2017 Cohort
"BGV have been an incredible ally from the start. We couldn't recommend them more highly."
Birdsong
Winter 2015 Cohort
"BGV has been a fantastic investor and has given mappd a huge amount of support through the programme and afterwards too. The support network is most valuable and the opportunities that come along with it"
mappd
Spring 2018 Cohort
Here is a quick introduction to who we are and the work we do.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can we expect by joining BGV?
First up, each team joining the programme will receive a £30,000 cash investment in return for 7% equity (there's more information on this investment below). Teams will join our three-month programme of intensive support. BGV's support doesn't end there. Instead, we offer continuous non-financial support to all our portfolio ventures and the opportunity for follow-on funding to a select number of teams afterwards.

In 2020, we made investments into 19 teams through our programme and nine follow-on investments into portfolio companies at pre-seed and seed stages.

Generally, we are here to help out with your business, connect you to investors and mentors, and facilitate learning amongst the portfolio for as long as you need us.
How much time do I need to commit?
The programme's "contact hours" are usually held over two days per week. We do this because we know our teams have businesses to run, and they need the time to do that. We are looking for teams that are dedicated to working full-time on their ventures; it is hard work running a tech for good startup, and running the programme over the past eight years has showed us that.

We understand that not everyone is able to participate in our programme full-time due to caring responsibilities or issues relating to the current pandemic. We're always keen to explore how we can best tailor the programme to people's needs - get in touch if you'd like to discuss more.
At what stage do you typically invest?
"Early stage" is quite an ambiguous term, but we first invest into all teams that have demonstrated what we are looking for (see above) and are accepted onto our programme. Companies usually range from pre-product or prototype stage to those with an early product or service with users. We then provide follow-on funding for a select number of teams at pre-seed and seed stage as part of a bigger round.
Can I apply as an individual?
Yes you can apply as an individual, but it's more likely that we'll invest in you with a team. We definitely wouldn't invest in a founder who thought they could do it all on their own - the wellbeing of founders is important to us and building, launching and scaling a venture is hard on your own. We strongly believe that diverse teams bring superior returns and impact and have strong potential to achieve better outcomes for people and the planet.
Do we already have to be incorporated as a company before we apply?
No – we can help you do that if you're selected. If you've already got a company set up, we'll just get you to sign the paperwork and then transfer the money to you. We require that you're incorporated in the UK for us to be able to invest.
Do you support not-for-profit companies, charities or community interest companies?
Unfortunately not. We only invest in companies limited by shares and are unable to invest in CICs due to the asset lock.
My idea isn't based on technology, can I apply?
No. We're just focusing on ideas that use technology. That's what we know about and we think it's more likely that ideas based on technology can scale faster to help millions of people which is our ultimate goal for all the companies we fund.
I've already got funding and investment, can I apply?
Yes. We'll want to know about that investment and see what you've been able to achieve with it. We work with teams at different spectrums of 'early-stage', as long as we believe there's a match between the support we offer and the help you need.
Can I discuss my business idea with you?
Always. We're running monthly virtual Q&A events where you can find out more about BGV and what we offer. You can sign up using this form to speak to our team for a drop-in session (also commonly referred to as office hour). However, we're still a relatively small team, so will only be able to meet with teams who fit our investment thesis.
Do we have to live in London?
No, due to the current pandemic you can live anywhere in the world and join our programme online. However, we don't know yet if our programme will be fully virtual. If it's a blend of in-person and virtual elements, you would need to be able to travel to London to take part in workshops during the three-month programme (safety permitting). We've included questions on social distancing requirements in our application, so please do let us know about your needs.
Do we have to be British to apply?
No. Our only requirement is that you have the right to work in the UK to be able to participate in elements of an in-person programme (though our programme is remote-first) and that your company is incorporated in the UK.
Can you help with visas for entrepreneurs outside of EEA?
BGV is an endorsing body for the UK Government's Startup and Innovator visa schemes. This means that we can put entrepreneurs forward to apply for these visas. BGV will only be endorsing people who have successfully applied for our investment and support. There are a number of criteria to be applicable for this support which you can read more about on this page. We are not in a position to endorse individuals outside of this, and are not able to provide advice or respond to individuals on how to get endorsements - for all visa related questions please visit the Home Office website.
Is the offer negotiable?
No. One of the most important and beneficial things about joining BGV is being part of a cohort, and entering the portfolio following the programme. We want the teams on the programme to start on equal terms.
Is there a programme participation fee?
Yes. On top of the investment mentioned above, BGV will provide £25,000 of additional investment to each venture. After investment we will invoice you for our programme participation fee of £25,000 (plus VAT). So each venture will receive £55,000 and pay a £25,000 fee, totalling a £30,000 investment for 7% equity in your business.

Remember, the BGV team are there to help you with your VAT return so you can offset the VAT paid on the programme fee.
What have you learned running a tech for good programme for early stage ventures?
We've learned a lot from investing in early stage tech for good businesses over the past nine years and continue to learn, iterate and test as we go. We've identified critical success factors when we screen, select and support ventures joining the BGV community. These include:

  • Skills and commitment of the management team
  • Deep understanding of the social or environmental problem and market insight
  • A user centred design approach, based on learning and iteration
  • The innovation of the product or service, and its potential to add significant value to users and customers at a large scale
  • Differentiation and defensibility in light of competition