© iStock / Jacob Ammentorp Lund
Students and research assistants: from university to business foundation
Have you come across an exciting business idea during your studies or while working as a research assistant? Start your own business now.
Students and research assistants bring a lot of creative potential with them and are also up to date with the latest research. This gives them the best possible qualifications to start a business.
Universities are becoming increasingly important for the start-up ecosystem in North Rhine-Westphalia. This is where knowledge and technologies are developed and business ideas created. Most of the companies supported by venture capital come from the university context.
The state of North Rhine-Westphalia is well positioned for this: 70 universities and 14 clusters of excellence speak for themselves. Funding programmes increase the rate at which this potential is converted into start-ups.
Overview of the measures
There is a bundle of measures for this:
- The Exzellenz Start-up Center NRW initiative (information in German only) is expanding the start-up initiatives at the universities in Aachen, Bochum, Dortmund, Cologne, Munster and Paderborn and is investing 150 million euros in these universities and in promising projects at other universities by 2024.
- Start-up teams from universities are being supported directly through the Start-up Transfer NRW funding programme (information in German only). Start-up projects can receive funding of up to 320,000 euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.
- The start-up advisors at the universities support those interested in submitting applications for funding from programmes run by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Federal Government.
- In addition to the traditional funding channels we also offer for start-ups by students and academic staff the EXIST programmes for start-up grants and research transfers provided by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs. They support scientists and students with innovative start-ups. For example, living expenses under the EXIST start-up grant programme are funded for a maximum of one year up to 3,000 euros per month, plus money for coaching sessions or material expenses. Further information can be found here.
With additional individual measures, the start-up procedure for students and research assistants should also be simplified:
- NRW patent validation programme for overcoming technological hurdles,
- Standard licence agreement for use by business founders,
- Option for business founders to take terms off.