FAQ about the ScaleNL Accelerator program

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General information

What are the key dates?

These are the important dates for you to know, and block in your agenda. 

Applications are now open until February 18. 

Selection Days are taking place on February 25 & 28. Founders will be invited for a 15min timeslot to pitch in person in Amsterdam to the selection board between 9.30 – 12.30 on Feb 28th. 

The program will start on April 11th, and run until July 1st. 

  • Sessions will take place virtually or in person on Tuesdays and Thursdays, mostly in the afternoon and evening. 
  • There will be 1 week in May fully in person in Amsterdam.
  • The trip to the USA will take place in June.
How many companies are selected for the program?

Ten companies are selected to join the program

We will invite 15 teams to Selection Days. Their video pitches will be shown to valuable stakeholders of the ecosystem and they will receive a lot of insightful feedback after the event. A professional selection board will make the final selection of ten companies that will join the program. 

Applications are currently open, anyone can apply!

What happens at Selection Days?

Applications are currently open until February 18th. 

 

Our team will select a shortlist of 15 applicants to be presented during Selection Days on Feb 25 & 28. 

 

On Feb 25th, we will show your video pitches to a group of 40 advisors and partners with experience in scaling to the USA, investing in startups, and building businesses. Although you do not need to be present for this, we will share a lot of valuable feedback from those advisors on partners with you.

On Feb 28th, you will pitch to the selection board in Amsterdam (timeslot between 9.30 and 12.30). Based on the input and feedback from both days, the selection board will select ten companies to join the program.

Is the program a fit for my company?

Who is this program for?

As long as your choice to go to the US is deliberate and strategic, we encourage you to apply!

Below are some minimum requirements that we look for.

 

  • Digital-first businesses across all verticals
  • Working on innovative and scalable tech 
  • Within a Sustainable Development Goal
  • You’ve at least reached product-market fit in The Netherlands and are ready to scale
  • Have financial runway for most of 2022
  • Are already planning to expand to the US in 2022. Maybe you’ve even taken some steps towards making that happen.

Still have doubts about whether your business is a fit? Email us.

Based on what criteria do you select the companies for the program?

We’re looking for companies that we can really help. 

More specifically, digital-first, scalable businesses that have proven they have a market for their solution. All tech, all sectors, different stages. As long as you have planned to expand to the US and we can help you, you have a chance and should apply

Still have doubts about whether your business is a fit? Email us.

What can I expect from the program?

How many people can participate in the program? Does it have to be the founders?

The program is designed for founders of the company. Throughout the program, we ask that one founder be fully committed and present as the main participant. They will attend all sessions, travel to the US at the end of the program, and be the main point of contact for our team, their coach and their lead mentor.

 

Other members of the leadership team can join certain sessions where relevant.

What are the costs each company will incur by joining the program?

The program is funded by the Dutch government to help Dutch tech pioneers scale in the USA. 

You will have to cover your own travel and accommodation costs when we travel to the USA for two weeks. We will provide some guidance in different types of accommodation, which should cover different budgets. 

We recommend having enough runway to join the program and until you can raise more funding, and having a budget internally to invest in your expansion to the US.

No other costs are involved in your joining the program.

What can I expect from the program itself?

As one of the ten companies joining the program, our goal is to get you ready to scale into the US market. Together we’ll take stock of your current situation, make a plan of what to focus on, and get it done in time for our trip to the USA. 

 

The program phases include:

  1. Introduction to get to know your business and set up a plan of where to focus in the coming weeks to establish US market readiness. 
  2. Adapting your business and business strategy to the US market: local product-market fit, US-friendly marketing and sales, business model, etc. 
  3. Getting your finances and investment plan ready for the US. 
  4. Go to California, meet local partners, launching customers, investors, etc. and pitch your launch at The Showcase. 

 

Our goal is for your company to succeed in its growth to the US market. We have the network, resources and time to focus on each companies’ individual needs.

How much time do I need to free up for the program?

We will me mindful of your time, but expect you to be present at the program events and meetings. Here is an overview of those commitments.

Selection Days: if invited, you must attend in person, in Amsterdam on Feb 28. You will be given a 15min timeslot between 9.30 and 12.30.

Program: afternoons and evenings on Tuesdays and Thursdays between April 11 and July 1st should be reserved for the program.
Below are some more specific time commitments outside of that scope:
Week of April 11 – 15: this is the kick-off week of the program. There will be more sessions than usual.
Week of May 30 – June 3: full time commitment, in person, in Amsterdam.
June 13 – July 1st: full time commitment while traveling to the USA.

Again, we are mindful of your time, and will provide more specific schedules after Selection Days to the program teams.

What is success for the ScaleNL Accelerator?

The government recognizes that startups are a driving force of the Dutch economy. For example, as job creators: 250 000 new jobs in the last 3 years alone. Scaling up your Dutch company abroad will also grow your home base in The Netherlands. 

That’s why our goal is to help you grow your business abroad, and help you reach your full unicorn potential.

What if I don’t get selected for the Selection Days or the Accelerator?

ScaleNL Ecosystem! Here is the application form.