Spark, fire, coal – factors for success with the EXIST Business Start-Up Grant

Many of the founder teams of students, researchers, and / or graduates of the KIT wonder whether their ideas, their startup projects, or their research projects are suitable for an application for the EXIST Business Start-Up Grant. Directly related to this is the question of what to bring to a successful application. Below, we highlight the three main evaluation criteria – which we will discuss in detail in the founder consultation with the teams. Continue reading

The first PhD Spring School on Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship comes to an end successfully

Doctoral candidates become tomorrow’s entrepreneurs

The founder city Karlsruhe and especially KIT offer the perfect platform for emerging entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into a potential business idea and found their own business. In light of this fact, the Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology Management and Innovation (EnTechnon) developed the first “PhD Spring School on Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship”: The focus was on technological inventions as a basis for startups.

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In cooperation with the HECTOR School of Engineering & Management, the School took place from March 26th to March 31st with 21 participants. The participants mainly came from the technological and scientific area. With the help of technical lectures and workshops, they were able to acquire the foundational know-how for the startup of a business. In addition to the theoretical foundations, the scientists were taught how to develop business ideas from research results and technologies. In different workshops, such as creativity, business model development, and financial planning, participants were able to apply their newly acquired stills to practical examples in smaller groups. Among other things, the subject matter to practice on was the technology offerings at KIT, from which the participants created business ideas. These results were presented to a jury at the concluding pitch event on March 31st and the individual groups received feedback about their business ideas.

Andreas Przybilla is a doctoral candidate at KIT. The PhD Spring School was able to strengthen his determination to found his own business. “I received a lot of help in developing my idea into a business idea because there are many aspects in the process of starting up a business that we don’t tend to consider by ourselves.” Przybilla recommends this ‘101’ to all doctoral candidates who seek starting up a business.
Fabian Graf of the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg also gives a positive summary of the intensive workdays. The PhD School has given him knowledge of the expectations, preparation, and important topics in business startups. The workshops helped him acquire techniques and tools in order to better realize his creativity and frame his thoughts in a more structured way. “It was a total of four days, so you don’t sacrifice too much PhD working time. But considering such a short amount of time, it was very intensive, all culminating in a pitch event. Here, one can use everything one has learned throughout the past days.”
After the successful end to the School, the preparations for the next round are already underway: the second School will take place in September 2014. For questions and more information, please contact Anja Wahl.

Seven startup projects at the second upCAT (Startup Catalyst)

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The KIT accelerator program upCAT (Startup Catalyst) is entering into its second round. On March 31st, 2014, a total of seven teams started at the kick-off of upCAT. This time, the business ideas of the participants are varied: ranging from information technology to further training and health to entertainment. We are already looking forward to the final presentation of the business ideas at the Demo Day on July 1st, 2014. Save the date! Continue reading

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