5 questions about Up2B Market Discovery Accelerator

When looking at the fast-developing and growing world economy, one can say that internationalization is becoming one of the most important and profitable ways of expansion of business and increase of brand awareness.

Market discovery is a completely new program which focuses on international startups that want to expand to the German market. This one-week program starting from September 26th 2022 helps your startup to successfully plan and launch business in Baden-Württemberg. 

To clarify a little bit more, we conducted an interview with the project lead, Anna Hüttl, and asked her 5 questions about the program. Anna Hüttl tells us about the idea of creation of the program, approach of the accelerator, advantages of Rhein-Neckar region and some more.

1. Market Discovery is a new accelerator inside the Up2B portfolio. What led you to the decision to initiate this program?

Anna: Up2B Accelerator has always been international. All our programs are
conducted in English, so we’ve had a lot of international participants as well.

What we saw since 2017 is that international companies and startups have different challenges than the local ones (or the German ones). That's why we created Up2B Market Discovery as a new program for international startups that want to enter the German market.

2. How does the Up2B Market Discovery Accelerator support startups with their expansion to the German market?

Anna: We have built Up2B Market Discovery on four main pillars:

  1. Business strategy: Together with our experts, we help the startups to define their market entry strategy and decide on milestones and the goals.
  1. Business Execution: Starting a company in Germany is about incorporation, law, taxes, opening a bank account and hiring staff. We also cover these topics with our experts during the program.
  1. Sales and marketing: The most important thing for the startups is to find customers here in our region and in Germany in general. That’s why one day will be dedicated only to sales and marketing. The startups will learn how to find sales representatives and how to do sales in Germany. They will also get in touch in one-on-one sessions with local companies from our region in the corporate speed dating.
  1. Culture and lifestyle: Last, but not least - and this is maybe the most important thing - the startups should feel comfortable and welcome in the Rhine-Neckar region. That's why we also have some very cool, interesting cultural and social activities planned for them.
Up2B Market Discovery, Anna Hüttl
Up2B Market Discovery, Anna Hüttl

3. Why do you consider the Rhine-Neckar region to be a good place for startups?

Anna: First of all, the Rhine-Neckar region has a great infrastructure for entering the German and other European markets. It’s possible to travel anywhere in Germany or within Europe by car, train or plane in a very short time.

Second of all, we have great support systems here. Apart from the Up2B accelerator, there are also other accelerator programs in Baden-Württemberg, as well as over ten startup centres in Mannheim and Heidelberg.

Third of all, we have a dense network of business angels to support startups financially and a very big density of corporates. There are many world market leaders, hidden champions and SMEs situated in the Southwest of Germany that are interested in collaboration with startups.

Finally, there is great tech and startup community in Mannheim and Heidelberg and we offer networking events and platforms where they can meet each other and exchange.                 

4. What are the biggest challenges for international startups when expanding to the German market and how does Market Discovery help them to overcome these challenges?

Anna: International startups entering the German market are facing a lot of different and diverse challenges and have to make a lot of bold decisions. They are dealing with things like hiring employees and finding the right legal form, getting to understand taxes, processes, and bureaucracy in Germany.

I think the main challenge is to find the first five customers in Germany. And that's where Up2B comes into place.

Up2B is a B2B and industry tech accelerator and in all of our programs, our main goal is to connect the participating startups with corporates and make them get in touch and collaborate.
Anna Hüttl

5. The life in the Rhine-Neckar region is not just about working and business. Why is this area a good place to live?

Anna: I personally love the Rhine-Neckar region. There are many cities in one small area, mainly Mannheim and Heidelberg. Also, there is a lot of culture, city, lifestyle and nightlife and also nature closely combined in one area.

In Mannheim, for example, 170 nationalities live together, which makes the city very open-minded and diverse. And I personally like that most about this region.

And finally, in comparison to other cities and areas in Germany, the climate here is very mild, which makes it easy for foreigners to survive here 😉

Short facts about Market Discovery

  • Application deadline: July 10th 2022
  • Dates of the program: September 26th till 30th 2022
  • Number of participants: only 12 startups will be chosen
  • Costs: the program is free of chanrge, startups only have to cover accommodation and travel costs
  • Location: Mannheim and Heidelberg (south-west of Germany)
  • Language: English

About the Up2B Accelerator

The Up2B Accelerator is a joint venture of the organisations innoWerft Technologie- und Gründerzentrum Walldorf Stiftung GmbH, mg:mannheimer gründerzentren GmbH and Technologiepark Heidelberg GmbH and is funded by Startup BW. Since 2017, Up2B has supported more than 180 startups with a B2B and IndustryTech focus.



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