DACH Start-up? Clean-tech? Change-driven? Apply for EU’s best accelerator and take action!
In The News
05 Jul 2019
Meet Aimee! Accelerator Lead of Berlin reveals the answers to most asked questions in the Climate-KIC accelerator and tells you how to stand out with your application.
From California to Halle,Tuebingen & Chemmnitz and back to San Francisco. Berlin is what Aimee calls her home now. The regional start-up accelerator lead from Climate-KIC has collected many international experiences and credibility to shape her career towards sustainability and more importantly: supporting great innovations!
Aimee: Our accelerator team is dedicated to combining passion, purpose, and profit to support the startups in the program and that is also what we look for in the coaches we work with to help the teams, and how we approach the scouting process for the best startups to take into the accelerator program. We are a community of like-minded citizens of the world who are working to tackle climate change with innovative solutions, and to bring these to the market in a feasible and scalable way.
Quick Guide: What Climate-KICs Accelerator offers
- Up to 85k financial support with no equity taken — there is no catch here!
- An extensive international network, tailored coaching and peer-to-peer learning
- Four locations: Zurich, Vienna, Munich & Berlin (with the offer of a free physical office)
3 Accelerator Stages
The programme consists of three fixed term 6-month phases, after which you leave the programme and become alumni. If you apply for and are successful in completing each stage, we will have supported you for a period of 18 months.
- Stage 1: Business Model Development
- Stage 2: Customer Traction
- Stage 3: Investment Readiness
Learn about our stages here.
Most asked questions
Does my solution need to be tech-based?
Aimee: We are not an exclusively tech startup accelerator although we do focus our evaluation on innovative and scalable solutions.
Do I need to be located in the DACH region to be eligible for the program?
Aimee: Teams need to either have their company foundation (or planned founding) in the region they are applying to or have an established upcoming intention to enter the regional market. For teams applying to the Berlin, Germany location you do not need to move to Berlin if you are not located there already for the duration of the program but it is strongly recommended and encouraged.
What does two full-time founders mean exactly…because we don’t have two full-time founders but…?
Aimee: It means 2 founders 100% dedicated to developing the venture full-time at the onset of the program (1stOctober). We understand that up until now, you may have employment, or other commitments, so this pertains to the start of the accelerator program. That is the perspective you should consider when you answer this question in the application.
Example, you are a founding team of 3: 1 person 80 percent, 1 person 100 percent, 1 person 50%
(still does not count)
Example, you are a team of 2 FT team members, but only 1 is a founder
(does not count, you have to be a founding team member)
Example, you are a founding team of 2: both 50% now but will be 100% at the start of the program
(yes, this counts!)
Aimees three hot tips for your application
1) Have vision, we know you are in your early development right now, but you and your team are dedicating all you have got to your venture, so know where you want to take it and make this clear in your application. Climate change is an eminent challenge and we need to think big when it comes to the potential of solutions to combat it.
2) Know that not everyone is an expert in your industry or field. It is important to explain your product or service clearly and in a way that anyone can understand it.
3) Last but not least: failing is a part of the process, don’t be afraid to share your mistakes and learnings. This shows us that you are adaptable and can turn a difficult situation into something positive. This will be necessary time and time again during your entrepreneurial journey.
Encouraged to sign up or do you still have questions? Check out our Website and FAQ. The application is open until 22. July. Additionally, we are hosting an Open Day on 19 July in Berlin. The Open Day gives interested applicants the chance to learn more about the programme, meet our local team in Berlin, and ask questions in person.
Follow our Accelerator on Instagram to get exclusive insights inside start-ups interaction with Climate-KIC and lots of other green content!
Author: Anje Kluth, EIT Climate-KIC