The Land Accelerator Program

The Land Accelerator is a four-month program and curated network for entrepreneurs who restore degraded forests and farmland. It is anchored by an intensive week-long workshop when the cohort meets in person. The accelerator aims to build networks and skills necessary to scale businesses. There is no fee to join, and the program does not take equity. The inaugural Land Accelerator is coming to New Delhi, India in early June 2020.

Why Land Restoration ?

Worldwide over 3.2 billion people are at risk from land degradation. 96.4 million hectares of land in India, which is nearly 30% of the country’s landmass, is facing land degradation, resulting in lower yields on agricultural land, and wastelands lacking in the ability to support naturally occurring plants and animals.

Addressing the High-Level Segment of the 14th Conference of Parties (COP14) of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) on September 9th, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that “India would raise its ambition of the total area that would be restored from its land degradation status from 21 Million Hectares to 26 Million Hectares between now and 2030”.

India has high stakes in land restoration, since 30% of its total land area has been hit by degradation.


  • Startups, entrepreneurs, SMEs

  • Companies must be at least of the prototype level

  • Company improves or restores degraded land 

  • From a South Asian country including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal or Sri Lanka


Selection criteria


  • Capital required to start?

  • Expertise requirements?

  • What else is required to start something similar?

  • Relevant to other parts of country/ continent?

Environmental Impact

  • Does it depend on resource extraction?

  • Does it increase land productivity?

  • Biodiversity?

  • Carbon sequestration?

  • Soil health?

  • Air/ water quality? 

  • Other impacts?

Social Impact

  • Job creation?

  • Percentage of women employed?

  • Percentage of poor employed?

  • Percentage of higher-value activities done locally?

  • Benefits to local community?

  • Benefits to others?


  • What is the product?

  • Who is the target customer?

  • Is there a team?

  • Has a company

    been set up?

  • Ongoing


  • Expectations for

    revenues/ profits?


  • What is growth potential?

  • Targeted area of land (in ha)?

  • Operating leverage?

  • Marginal costs?

  • Customer acquisition costs?

Program offerings

* Perk( eg: 5 teams will receive dedicated physical incubation support for 1 year free of cost)

Mini grants of $3,000 per project to all the participants

Travel scholarships to New Delhi, India to participate in program in June 2020

No cost to participate, no equity taken

Demo Day exposition with many investors from New Delhi 

Increased exposure for your company

Business and partnership opportunities

Selection Process and Timeline

Selection Process

Online Application

Pitching session



Call for applications

  28 Feb 2020

13th March 2020

Internal Evaluation

Internal Evaluation

  14th Mar 2020

5 Jan 2020

Application End Date

Call for Pitching

Winners Announcement

Program starts on 

Winners will have to be physically present at AIC-Sangam for a period of 1 year continuously