Unlocking Ambition | Scotland CANDO

Accelerating the growth of highly ambitious companies

Accelerating the growth of highly ambitious companies


The prestigious Unlocking Ambition Challenge is a flagship entrepreneurial development programme, created by the Scottish Government and initiated by the First Minister for Scotland.

Following a very successful Pilot in 2018-2020, ROUND 2 is NOW OPEN for applications.

Unlocking Ambition Round 2 (UA2) will deliver a world-class accelerator programme of support for up to 40 ambitious entrepreneurs from October 2020 – March 2021.

The cohort will receive a £25,000 Development Grant whilst on the programme – as well as business advice, mentoring and in-kind support.

UA2 is a cohort-based programme designed to support young companies that are ready to take steps towards transformational growth. The programme focus and content is targeted towards ambitious entrepreneurs whose companies are around 0-4 years old and that can make a positive impact on society as they scale.

You are eligible to apply if your company is:

  • An SME, based/HQ in Scotland
  • Less than 4 years old *
  • Able to contribute to Scotland’s recovery and journey towards a zero carbon economy – likely to be in the low carbon/green, energy, digital, manufacturing or health & wellbeing industries
  • Ready to make transformational change towards scaling your company
  • Able to participate in a 6 month programme of masterclasses and business support, committing 1-2 days per month as part of the cohort

* Indicative

More information and FAQs available here.

All enquiries should be directed to unlockingambition@scotent.co.uk.

Unlocking Ambition is the Scotland CAN DO partnership at its best, working together to bring intensive wrap-around support for our most promising entrepreneurs. The Programme is for founders who can demonstrate their ideas are scalable, able to create good jobs and benefit society.

How to apply

Applications are now closed.

  • Read the FAQs to familiarise yourself with the programme
  • Download an Application Form – either in (Opens in new window) Mac or (Opens in new window) MS Word format
  • Complete all sections of the Form
  • You are welcome to also submit a Business Plan along with your Application Form – this must also be PDF – other formats will not be accepted
  • Submit as a PDF by the deadline – 12 Noon on Monday 21st September 2020

If you have any questions relating to the Programme or your Application, please email unlockingambition@scotent.co.uk.

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Unlocking Ambition is supported by a number of partners from the Scottish Entrepreneurial Support Ecosystem and Can Do Forum, including: