Startups and scale-ups

Dutch startups and scale-ups play a crucial role in addressing the challenges society faces today. At the forefront of all major global transitions, they turn innovation into impactful, profitable businesses. Companies that generate jobs and income and spur economic growth, while contributing to a better future for all. 

The Netherlands offers startups and scale-ups an extensive ecosystem to flourish, explore and experiment. Part of that ecosystem are startups and scale-ups on a mission to ignite positive change. A government shaping the right conditions. And knowledge institutions, incubators, accelerators and hubs building valuable networks. Together we harness the power of cooperation to cocreate responsible tech.

Home to about 11,000 startups and scale-ups, the Netherlands is the third-largest ecosystem in Europe. Together, Dutch startups are valued at nearly 300 billion euros. Some of Europe’s largest tech unicorns, such as
Booking.com, Takeaway and Adyen, have their roots in the Dutch clay. Their success inspires a new generation of entrepreneurs. Through mentoring and financial support, successful entrepreneurs keep the innovation going.

Success inspires success: through mentoring and financial support, successful entrepreneurs keep the innovation going

At our universities and knowledge institutions, talent is challenged early on to think independently, experiment and dream big. And when they are ready, some of the world’s leading accelerators and incubators help them to take their companies to the next level. Amsterdam-based accelerator Rockstart, for example, is a former TIMMIES Award winner for most innovative ecosystem.

Government as an accelerator of change

The Dutch government actively shapes an environment in which young companies can flourish. As a launching customer, it stimulates hubs to share innovations, expertise and knowledge. Through Techleap, it supports young tech companies to scale-up, while the FastLane programme offers additional support for our most promising young companies.

Across borders, the government facilitates international partnerships and knowledge exchange through talent programmes, subsidies, missions and other incentives. Specialised Startup Liaison Officers help ease the leap with information and contacts. As finance is sometimes an insurmountable hurdle for young companies, the government works with other EU countries to increase access to funding.



The Netherlands as a living innovation lab

International entrepreneurs will find an excellent digital and physical infrastructure to help accelerate their growth. Our country’s strategic location provides easy access to the European market. At the same time, the Netherlands is also a great test bed for ideas that are unconventional, yet promising. Our 17 million potential consumers are early adapters who love to experiment. They are also a flexible, highly educated, internationally-oriented pool of potential employees.

Equal opportunities

The Netherlands aims to offer international talent the same opportunities as Dutch talent. The Talent Coalition provides them with information and helps them find jobs.

Prefer to start your own business? The Netherlands has a specialised
startup visa for ambitious entrepreneurs. Netherlands Point of Entry helps those who want to make the Netherlands their temporary or permanent home.

We also help young entrepreneurs abroad put exciting new ideas into practice. Through the Orange Corners programme, ambitious entrepreneurs in developing countries are supported with training, mentorship, a network, funding and facilities. With a little help, they can make a big impact in their home countries.

Join us!

The Netherlands offers startups, scale-ups, investors and like-minded people a place where they can turn great ideas into successful, impactful companies to transform the world for the better. To set positive change in motion, we call on you: let’s accelerate the change!


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Get in touch and join us

Want to know more about how you can work together with the Netherlands to achieve your goals? Or how you can help contribute to or spread the word on campaigns, events and initiatives? Contact us directly at info@nlplatform.nl so we can help you connect to the right people.