October 06, 2023
ScaleNL Team
Last week, during the second week of the ScaleNL Accelerator West Coast 2023 program, the founders from our West Coast 2023 Cohort met in person for the first time to start their 12-week journey towards US expansion! During the Amsterdam Summit, a two-day event moderated by Dorit Roest, Founding Partner of ScaleNL, our 12 founders were immersed in a captivating program filled with informative presentations, hands-on workshops, and interactive ask-me-anything sessions, all aimed at empowering startups to conquer the US market and beyond. 🚀🌐

Key Takeaways 💡

🗺️ Navigating Cultural Nuances 

Doing business in the US requires a keen understanding of cultural nuances, from refining your pitch to engaging in casual conversations with potential stakeholders. Authenticity is crucial, and while there are tools to enhance your skills, practice and genuine interactions are foundational.

🌪️ Understanding Investor Dynamics

Investors aren’t a homogeneous group; they have varying interests and unique expectations of investment opportunities. It’s essential to deeply understand an investor you’re seeking and contemplate the value they can bring beyond capital infusion. Selecting an investor is strategic, demanding thorough research and judicious investment of time.

🧭 Charting Your Course Through Reflection and Goal-Setting

The life of a founder can be a whirlwind, with rapid changes in both personal and startup spheres. Setting and periodically reflecting on goals can serve as a compass during this dynamic journey. Seeking support and guidance is encouraged to navigate these experiences effectively.


Expanding startups to the United States is a complex and challenging task, with over 90% of startups failing to achieve long-term success. To increase your chances of survival, it’s essential to have a solid foundation that covers all aspects of the business. At the ScaleNL Accelerator program, we recognize the importance of this foundation and provide invaluable assistance to Dutch entrepreneurs seeking to expand their businesses to the US. During the program we challenge our founders to improve their understanding of the American market, including the cultural and practical nuances that play a crucial role in success. Our goal is to ensure that entrepreneurs feel supported and confident in their journey and are well-equipped to handle any challenge that may arise.

Especially for European first-time founders seeking to scale their businesses across the ocean, it’s important to note that simply copying and pasting their business model is not enough. You need to understand the complex and unique market characteristics of the United States and adapt your business accordingly. With the right foundation and support, Dutch entrepreneurs can successfully expand their businesses to the US and achieve their goals.

The event wouldn’t have been a success without our supporting community. Thank you to our partners and venue hosts who made the experience memorable: TITAAN, an impact-driven innovation hub and experience center by Unknown Group, and Startupbootcamp, a remarkable platform deeply entrenched in the Dutch tech startup ecosystem. The event wouldn’t have been complete without our guests and experts, including Jaap Barneveld and his team from our corporate partner De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek, Austin Simms – ScaleNL Accelerator Alum and Founder of Dayrize, Mark Zawacki, Janet Bumpas, Bas Rogaar, and Dorit Roest.

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Especially for European first-time founders seeking to scale their businesses across the ocean, it's important to note that simply copying and pasting their business model is not enough.
Group photo from the event
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