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An innovation fund of the UN Children’s Fund, Unicef has opened a call for startups developing virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) tech to apply for its next cohort by 17 September.
The Unicef Innovation Fund is offering equity-free seed funding of between $50 000 and $90 000 to promising startups from around the world developing virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) applications that have the potential to significantly improve children’s lives.
Unicef Innovation Fund will offer selected startups equity-free funding of up to $90 000
To qualify, startups should be registered private companies in one of the Unicef’s programme countries and have a working virtual reality or augmented reality prototype. Additionally, startups must be working on open-source technology or be willing to open source their technology under a BSD license, a CERN license or a CC-BY license.
The focus of this cohort will be on developing VR and AR technology that assists in learning, storytelling and understanding data in complex environments.
The selected startups will be given access to Unicef’s Innovation’s venture team which will provide startups with technical support in emerging technology areas, advice on appropriate open source licenses and facilitate networking with partners and investors that will help startups scale their technologies and grow their businesses and profits.
According to the Unicef Innovation Fund dashboard, the fund is worth $11.2-million and has so far invested $2.4-million in 35 projects across 28 countries since its launch last year. The fund’s three portfolios include products for youth, real-time information and infrastructure.
Projects that have received investment from the fund include interactive chatbots, e-reading applications, malnutrition detecting facial recognition technology and low-cost communications solutions.
The fund also takes submissions for funding across the year on a rolling basis.
Featured image: © UNICEF Herwig (Supplied)