Start-up projects with technological inventiveness, an initial proof-of-concept, and the potential and ambition to be a global company are encouraged to apply.
Selected startups in the year-long acceleration program receive €50,000 (~$55,000) as pre-seed funding, tailored coaching and a range of business development support including drafting business plans, financial road mapping, clarifying intellectual property, market analysis, customer contracts and more. While funding is crucial for start-ups, imec’s international network also provides insight into foreign markets and broadens the scope of the start-up’s potential audience for sales and related growth opportunities.
Eligible companies must have some form of proof-of-concept or core product prototype. Verticals in which companies may apply include:
- Logistics, mobility & smart cities;
- Media, telecom & entertainment;
- Fintech, InsurTech & cybersecurity;
- HRTech & LearnTech;
- Industry 4.0
“Beyond business support, our team focuses on follow-up funding through external investments,” said Sven De Cleyn, program manager of imec.istart. “We have helped our start-ups to procure more than €195 million (~$215 million) in additional funding to help them grow beyond the accelerator program and scale-up.”