Collin Arocho
19 October

Leuven’s Imec.istart and Enschede’s Novel-T have announced a new partnership. In the agreement, the duo is joining forces to launch the new Imec.istart.nl program for tech startups. The 12–18-month program has its own investment fund attached and aims to give a boost to young technology companies and spinoffs from knowledge institutions and increase their chances of going from a prototype to a successful market launch and international growth.

Growth capital

In addition to an initial investment of 50,000-250,000 euros, program participants will also find access to 4,500+ of the world’s top tech experts and a large network of active investors. The program and fund involve several partners from the private and public sector, such as VDL, Simac, Oost NL, University of Twente, Imec, Cronos Group, Demcon, Pfizer, Comate and Research Center Oneplanet. The first registration round closes in mid-November. The program will start in January 2022. A second round opens on 1 May and starts in mid-2022.

“We’re looking forward to rolling out our leading acceleration program in the Netherlands. Especially to co-producing this with Novel-T as a strong founding partner,” says Sven De Cleyn, program director of Imec.istart. “We believe that the funding offered by Imec.istart.nl, together with the unique support program and international reach of the Imec network and our partners, will be great assets for Dutch high-tech and deep-tech startups with growth ambitions. This move also allows us to bring the Belgian and Dutch startup ecosystems closer together, which will create new opportunities for startups and scale-ups on both sides of the border.”