About Illumina Accelerator

About Illumina Accelerator

Illumina Accelerator is a company creation engine co-located with Illumina research and development sites in San Francisco Bay Area and Cambridge, UK. Illumina Accelerator provides select startups with access to seed investment, business guidance, Illumina sequencing systems, reagents, and fully operational lab space in the San Francisco Bay Area or Cambridge, UK during each six-month funding cycle.

About Illumina Accelerator

Our Illumina Accelerator Investments

We help create early stage, genomics-driven startups from across the globe to drive new commercial innovations and unlock the power of the genome. Our investments are advancing breakthrough applications in genomics, including novel therapeutics, diagnostics, agriculture, synthetic biology, software, and direct-to-consumer applications.
  • Encoded Therapeutics
  • EpiBiome, Inc.  (Locus Biosciences)
  • Xcell Bio
  • Biome Makers
  • Convergent Genomics
  • Trace Genomics
  • Naked Biome
  • Nextgen Jane
  • Prospect Bio
  • Vitagene
  • Boost Biomes
  • Haystack Sciences (Insitro)
  • Resilient Biotics
  • Checkerspot
  • Mantra Bio
  • Solarea Bio
  • DermBiont
  • MedAnswers
  • Mediphage
  • Polaris Genomics
  • Unite Genomics
  • Algen
  • Astarte Medical Partners
  • Avail Bio
  • Sharpen (formerly Cognitive Genetics)
  • Vast Biome
  • BioAmp
  • Celldom
  • Juno Bio
  • TriAxia Health
  • 4BaseCare
  • Felix
  • Jenthera
  • Lassogen
  • StemPharm
  • AarogyaAI
  • Alchemab
  • MEDiC Life Sciences
  • Neurolytic Healthcare
  • Pluton Bio
  • Tailor Bio
  • WellSim
  • BiotaX Labs
  • Broken String Biosciences
  • Doloromics
  • Flightpath Biosciences
  • Mitra Bio
  • MultiplAI Health
  • Parallel Health
  • Prenome
  • Rubik Therapeutics
  • BixBio
  • Epicombi.AI
  • Genegoggle
  • ImYoo
  • NewStem
  • Solena
  • Yali Biosciences
  • 4SR
  • B4X
  • Cache DNA
  • Non Exomics
  • Purpose Health
  • Rethink Bio
  • Acrobat Genomics
  • Dama Health
  • Nusantics
  • Pandora
  • Terrapeutics
  • Viridian Seeds

Frequently Asked Questions

Illumina Accelerator

Learn more about this funding opportunity for innovative genomics technology startups


At Illumina, our mission is to unlock the power of the genome. To help achieve this mission, Illumina Accelerator is partnering with startups to promote innovation in the entrepreneurial community. With extensive mentorship, financial support, access to sequencing systems, reagents, and lab space, Illumina Accelerator is building a dynamic genomics ecosystem to help launch startups. Together, we aim to advance breakthrough applications in genomics, including therapeutics, diagnostics, agriculture, synthetic biology, forensics, and direct-to-consumer applications.

Funding cycle format
Illumina Accelerator is a six-month funding cycle. Funding is provided for up to five startups per cycle and the curriculum is custom tailored to each company's unique needs. The core focus includes company building, strategy mapping, technology advancement, pitch development, and active coaching throughout the cycle. As the cycle concludes, meetings with venture capitalists and leading investors will be organized. The final month is the busiest time and will be devoted to completing all experiments, following up with all interested parties, and finding a new headquarters for the startup.
There are two, six-month funding cycles per year.
Eligibility and Applications
Candidate teams are genomic researchers, entrepreneurs, startups, or early-stage companies from academia and industry that plan to take their promising next-generation sequencing (NGS) applications to market.
Applicants are selected based on team dynamic, experience, technology concept, scientific strategy, and product characteristic (eg, intellectual property (IP), demonstrated market acceptance, etc.). Other factors include go-to-market strategy, overall market potential, and total financial considerations.
Candidates should apply a few months before the application deadline, wich occurs twice a year.
Startups are funded twice a year. Apply online for the next cycle (www.illumina.com/accelerator).
Yes, Illumina Accelerator funds startups that are working to develop breakthrough applications in genomics, as well as startups that use genomics or omics-based tools in their research and development. Genomics and multiomics are areas where illumina Accelerator expertise brings the most value. Startups will benefit most from an accelerator targeted to their specifc area of interest.

IIlumina Accelerator provides financial support so companies can produce the data needed for their fundraising efforts.

- Up to $200,000 in convertible notes (provided by seed investors)

- A secured line of credit of $20,000

- All of the sequencing credits and access to Illumina reagents and instruments you need to achieve the agreed-upon milestones to power your technology development

- Access to fully equipped lab and office space

IIlumina Accelerator can support a given startup from the concept level through initial seed funding as long as it hasn't already raised a Series round from venture capitalists. If needed, Illumina Accelerator can help with finding law firms to help incorporate a startup.
No. Convertible notes are optional.
Yes. Illumina Accelerator takes a 7% common share stake, fully diluted in each startup.
The financial aid that Illumina Accelerator provides is only one component of the program. The real benefits are inherent in the vehicle itself.
Illumina Accelerator invests in big ideas and helps drive value for startups developing breakthrough applications in genomics.
No. Illumina Accelerator makes funding decisions based on applications and personal interviews. Concepts are considered, but business plans are not required.
Yes, but the chances of acceptance are much lower. Building a startup is often far too intensive for just one person.
Yes. Two applications can be submitted as long as they are submitted from different founders.
No. If they are in the same class, Illumina Accelerator will not fund multiple startups working on the same idea.
Illumina Accelerator will consider the application, but having a technical cofounder among your connections will greatly increase the chances of acceptance. Teams that are arbitrarily formed for the sole purpose of beginning a startup have much lower chances of long term success.
Intellectual property (IP)
IIlumina Accelerator aims to empower companies with the resources they need to innovate. As such, Illumina Accelerator will consider providing nonexclusive rights to IP on a case-by-case basis.
Proximity requirement
Unfortunately, no. The startup must be based in the San Francisco Bay Area or Cambridge, UK during the six-month funding cycle. Startups may maintain a second operational site, but at least two cofounders must be full-time in the area during the six-month funding cycle.
International considerations
No, as long as they can reside in the country for atleast 6 months.
No. Illumina Accelerator does not secure visas for participants, but Illumina Accelerator can introduce participants to law firms with expertise on immigration matters.
Tours can be arranged for selected candidates.
Yes. Illumina Accelerator is happy to connect with prospective startups. Contact Illumina Accelerator via email at accelerator@illumina.com to share information about the startup.
No. Illumina Accelerator does not sign nondisclosure agreements.
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