If there is something that European technology does not lack, it is startup accelerators.
Every corner of the continent seems to have some, and today, for the first time, Sifted has compiled a database of over 400 of them.
Accelerator programs primarily offer a platform for first-time founders to get advice, mentorship, and financial support in the early days of their startup. Cohorts receive workshops, learning opportunities, and if they’re lucky, introductions to relevant investors and mentors. They usually give accelerators about 7% to 10% of their equity In return.
Not all of them get five-star ratings, though: Some Sifted readers said the “expert mentors” on her show could have been a lot more expert. And when we asked dozens of top-tier VCs which accelerators they pay attention to, only Entrepreneur First and Y Combinator got more than a handful of votes.
However, there are many local and specialized accelerators in the sector that play a valuable role in driving start-ups in Europe. Here, we list over 400 shows submitted by Sifted readers and sorted by Sifted analysts. If you think we’ve missed any, Let us know.
Europe’s startup accelerators
Location: In Europe: France; Germany; Netherlands; nordic; Portugal; Spain; United Kingdom
Approach: Pre-launch, pre-idea and pre-seed teams, independent of the sector
the first Antler program launched in January 2019, when 67 startups came together in Stockholm, launching in hopes of securing $110k for 12% equity. Now the accelerator has branched out into 18 locations around the world, with seven in Europe. Support founders from the early stages, sometimes even before the idea, by helping them engage with co-founders.
Approach: Fintech, SaaS and deeptech
Through its accelerator scheme, the Baltic Sandbox develops budding startups in the deep tech sector (in addition to fintech and SaaS). In 2022, she also ran a Women in Tech accelerator for the CEE region and a Silvertech program focused on problem-solving startups for older generations. It is backed by custom pet food company Zenoo and yacht booking service SEARADAR.
The accelerator has also recently developed a venture capital arm of the same name. This week, he announced that he raised €10 million of his first €13 million. early stage deep tech fund — the first dedicated fund in the region.
creative destruction lab
Location: In Europe: Oxford, Paris, Tartu and Berlin
Approach: Early-stage science-based startups
Creative Destruction Lab hosts full-day intensive sessions every eight weeks for its cohorts, led by mentors from a group of founders, angel investors, and venture capitalists. He also consults academic experts to help teams with technical feedback and turns to business school students for strategy support. Alumni companies include performance forecasting platform ecoation and AI-powered quality inspection software DarwinAI.
Approach: Sector-agnostic, pre-seed for accelerator or pre-idea for incubators
After launching its program in 2013, Demium launched a venture capital arm in 2020 and now invests from €150,000 in the pre-seed rounds of its cohorts (via a convertible note), up to €500,000 in the follow-up rounds. The accelerator program runs for six months and offers weekly online meetings with industry experts. It also runs eight incubators, where potential founders are matched up to create a startup within the program.
Approach: industry agnostic
Offering a campus-style community on the premises of a former hospital in Helsinki, Mary 01 The space not only houses startups, but also venture capitalists, corporations, and international investors, to connect founders with a valuable network within the coworking location. Members can access a variety of programs provided by corporate and venture capital partners, including the Arrow Cloud Innovation Factory program for SaaS startups and the Microsoft For Startups Founders Hub.
Approach: impact start-ups
Norrsken, another nonprofit, focuses on teams creating impactful solutions and houses its coworking office in the great halls of a former tram station. Teams apply for membership in the office as a workspace, gaining access to company connections at VC Fry, Nordea, Nordic Capital, and PwC. The eight-week accelerator programs in the Stockholm office provide selected teams with an initial investment of $125k and mentorship from successful founders, culminating in an investor day to demonstrate their ideas. It is set to open a second European hub in Barcelona in 2023.
The largest startup campus in the world, the Station F location in Paris offers a variety of programs for startups to gain access to coworking space. Following a 2022 revamp, its flagship Founders Program 2.0 is now divided into two batches, each hosting up to 25 startups for six weeks of workshops, six weeks to work on launch, and then 12 months to hone the mix. idea before launching again at the end. of the period.
Other accelerators on offer range from supporting founders at the idea stage to industry-specific programs, including their dedicated six-month FemTech initiative. There are also a number of partners running programs on the site, including Facebook and L’Oreal, and a Fighters program to boost select founders from disadvantaged backgrounds, who get free access to the campus for a year.
Approach: Several in 16 programs
Focusing on French companies based in Greater Paris that were formed less than three years ago, Wilco offers a selection of 16 industry-specific programs. Their goal during the three-year schemes is to get start-ups to their first million in annual turnover. Alumni of the accelerator include car sharing platform BlaBlaCar, personalized travel provider Evaneos, and parking space rental service Yespark.
Location: United Kingdom
Approach: Pre-team and pre-idea founders
Zinc’s 12-month Venture Builder program selects around 70 pre-idea and team individuals to tackle a specific social mission, which changes with each program and is financially backed by the London School of Economics. The 2023 program will seek solutions to “transform people’s financial resilience”. Successfully founded companies can receive up to £250,000 in investment.
Approach: support teams product market fit
This Berlin-based accelerator helps teams with an idea find validation for their concept during a five-month program, offering €25,000 of no-action funding. It is supported by digihub Dusseldorf, an initiative dedicated to promoting innovation in the region.
More than 400 active accelerators in Europe: the list, compiled by Sifted Intelligence