All You Need to Know About HEC’s Innovator Seed Fund 2021-22

The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has invited applications for Innovator Seed Fund (ISF) 2021-22, an initiative under the larger Higher Education Development in Pakistan (HEDP) program aimed at encouraging entrepreneurship in the country.

Under the ISF 2021-22, 15 promising early-stage startups will receive up to $35,000 in seed funding from the HEC for the next 12 months. In addition to this, they will be provided with entrepreneurial and legal training at Business Incubation Centers (BICs) at HEC-recognized universities.

ISF will also serve as a platform for the startups to connect with investors that will help them to meet their financial needs during the scale-up phase after the program.

Here is all you need to know about the Innovator Seed Fund (ISF) 2021-22:

Eligibility Criteria

To apply for the ISF, an applicant must:

  • Either be a student, recent alumni, faculty member, or researcher at any public or private Higher Education Institution.
  • Possess endorsement from one of the HEC –recognized BICs.
  • Have registered the business with SECP.
  • Not have received funding before applying for ISF.
  • Be willing to sign a tri-partite agreement with the BIC and the HEC.

Priority Areas

ISF grant will be awarded to early-stage startups focusing on the following priority areas:

  • Agriculture, Food Resources and Agri Tech
  • Banking, Microfinance, and FinTech
  • Creative, Digital Media, Arts, and Culture
  • Education and EdTech
  • E-commerce and Smart Retail
  • Emerging Technologies
  • Health Care and Health Tech
  • Housing, Construction, and Manufacturing
  • Sustainable Development, Climate, and Energy
  • Transportation and Logistics
  • Other sectors that have the potential for growth and impact

How to Apply?

Applicants can submit applications for the ISF 2021-22 at HEC Startup and BIC Support online portal. Applications sent through any other mode will not be entertained and will be rejected.


The HEC Startup and BIC Support online portal is now open and applicants can submit their proposals by 11:59 PM on 15 January 2022.

Read more about Innovator Seed Fund here.