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Impact Incubator: Climate Tech

Impact Incubator - Climate Tech is a seven-month incubator for Climate Tech solutions. Purpose-driven, technology-led founders need meaningful support and partnerships in order to contribute to a more sustainable and less wasteful society. Impact Incubator is where founders unlock their full potential. We support early-stage impact entrepreneurs with stipends and tailored business coaching, giving them the space, tools and network needed to secure strong partnerships and grow their impact. The programme is funded by the Berliner Startup Stipendium.

Join our online Open Office Hour

Want to learn more about Impact Incubator: Climate Tech?
Join us for an informative online session where our project team will be available to answer all your questions and provide a brief introduction to the programme.

🗓️ Date: January 18th, Thursday

🕒 Time: 13:00-14:00 CET

📍 Location: online (link will be provided upon registration)

Sign up now!

Our focus: Climate Tech

Climate tech, also known as clean technology or cleantech, encompasses a wide range of technologies and solutions aimed at addressing climate change and reducing environmental impacts. To drive progress in this vital area, we need to identify and faststream the most promising solutions.
The focus topics within the climate tech market can be categorized into various sectors and markets. Here are some key focus areas we invite applications from:

  • Building Energy Management
  • Industrial Energy Efficiency
  • Smart Grid and Grid Optimization

  • Green Building Materials
  • Energy-Efficient HVAC Systems
  • Sustainable Architecture and Design

  • Recycling and Upcycling Technologies
  • Waste-to-Energy Solutions
  • Sustainable Packaging

  • Precision Agriculture
  • Vertical Farming
  • Sustainable Packaging in Food Industry

  • Direct Air Capture
  • Carbon Sequestration
  • Carbon Utilization in Products

  • Resource Recovery and Recycling
  • Product Life Extension
  • Sustainable Supply Chain Management

What do ventures get?

Access to partners and networks
Facilitation of new partnerships, access to the global Impact Hub community of 24k+ members and potential exposure trips.

Individualised coaching
A customised curriculum specifically suited to each venture, with expert advisors from a  range of industries.

Financial support
Each founder receives a monthly stipend of €2,200 to ensure financial security and full concentration on the development of the venture.

Community and coworking
Access to Impact Hub Berlin’s local community and coworking facilities, which are constructed and operated according to circularity best practice. 

Mentoring
Teams are matched with a mentor who is a successful entrepreneur and has experience in building a business. 

Visibility and marketing
Publicity on Impact Hub Berlin’s website and public channels, strategic marketing support and production of a demo video for each team.

Who are we looking for?

Impact Incubator is a perfect match for startups, that:

  • have developed an innovative technological solution that drives the growth of Climate Tech.
  • tackle a challenge relating to one of our focus areas listed above.
  • have a functional prototype of your product or service.
  • have an entrepreneurial mindset: a willingness to learn combined with high resilience.
  • are on a team consisting of at least two founders that hold the majority of the company ownership (if applicable).

 

  • have not previously received a Berlin Startup Scholarship (this also includes the EXIST scholarship).
  • are willing to establish and/or relocate your company to Berlin.
  • have not yet registered your company (or have been a registered company (Gewerbeschein) for more than three months before your application).
  • will not have a student status or employment status during the programme (a sabbatical from university or work is also not compatible).
  • are German/European citizens or have a visa status with the permission to be self employed in Germany.

Timeline

Applications open
01.12.2023
31.01.2024
Applications close
31.01.2024
Selection
10.02.2024
01.03.2024 - 31.09.2024
Incubation
01.03.2024 - 31.09.2024

Do you want to hear first-hand what it’s like to participate in an Impact Hub Berlin incubator? Check out the video below:

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the program located?

The programme takes place in Berlin, Germany where we will provide you access to one of Europe’s most vibrant startup scenes and connect you to like-minded entrepreneurs, decision-makers and startup experts. It’s a prerequisite that you are located in or willing to relocate to Berlin.

Who is Impact Incubator for?

We designed  Impact Incubator to boost early-stage startups with a ready or almost ready prototype. The focus lies on solutions that have the potential to accelerate the transition to a green and net zero economy. You should be prepared to either start testing your solution with first pilot customers, or expand your existing customer base.

I am not sure whether I can apply. What are the entry requirements for the programme?

You’re eligible to apply if you:

  • live and are registered in Berlin or plan to at least for the duration of the programme.
  • Have not previously received an Exist Programme or Berlin Startup Scholarship
  • Base or plan to base your venture headquarters in Berlin.
  • Have not yet registered your company (or have been a registered company (Gewerbeschein) for NOT more than three months before your application).
  • Have not yet received major external investments like prize money or business angel money, or major public funding before beginning the programme.
  • Can commit full-time for the six months of the programme
  • Are not registered as a university student for the duration of the programme. 
  • (For non-EU residents) Have a valid Schengen Zone visa including permission to be self-employed.

I received the Berlin Startup Stipendium before already. Can I apply again?

Unfortunately this is not possible.

I already have another company but want to create a new one. Can I apply with my new company?

Yes, but you have to liquidate or sell your old company in order to fully focus on your new one.

I have been a long term CEO (or similar) within another company. Can I apply?

No, this program is for entrepreneurs with no pre-existing knowledge about entrepreneurship.

 

The idea/prototype/technology was developed within another company but I will create another company now. Can I apply?

Only if there is a legal document as proof that you have full power over the rights of the idea/prototype/technology.

I am employed but would get (unpaid) vacation for the time of the program. Can I participate?

No, you must leave your employment.

I am a student but finishing my thesis right now (within this semester). Can I participate?

Yes, this is possible, but only if you can prove that there are no open seminars from the curriculum that you have to finish.

I have submitted my application. What are the next steps in the selection process?

By submitting your application you should receive a confirmation email. If you haven’t received a confirmation, please contact us: [email protected].

The selection team of Impact Hub Berlin will screen all of the applications. In that phase you might be contacted by Impact Hub Berlin, if any questions should come up.

After screening all applications, the selection team will choose up to 15 teams that will be invited for personal interviews.

In the next step, Impact Hub Berlin will invite teams for the Pitch Day, where our external Advisory Committee composed of experts in the fields of greentech & climate tech, sustainability and business management will finally decide on the admission into the program.

What does the Selection process involve? How will the teams be appointed to Impact Incubator?

In choosing the participants, we’ll take into account the entrepreneurial skills of the team, the potential for scaling and the positive impact of your solution. We’ll also take into consideration how persuasive you are in your pitch / application.

Applications will be assessed on:

  • Social and ecological impact
  • Business model and feasibility
  • Potential to scale
  • Team

The diversity of the team also plays a key role and we aim to have an equal gender split within the cohort.

How many team members can apply?

Our focus is on collaboration – to be selected for the programme you must have a team of at least two founders and up to a maximum of 5 founders.  Please note that every participant has to be a shareholder/co-founder of the company that is to be founded. If you have a great product and are currently seeking co-founders, reach out to our team who may be able to advise or connect you to potential co-founders.

Do I have to attend all events?

Impact Incubator will combine input from experts as well as highly individualized business coaching. As such we will cater to the specific needs of our start-ups and deem them highly relevant. We would expect that you attend all of the events and engage full-time.

Language of the program

The programme will be conducted in English. Please submit your documents and materials in English to attract the broadest range of potential partners and investors.

Who’s behind the Impact Incubator programme?

The Impact Hub Berlin designed the programme, implements all measures and ensures a smooth transition. We belong to a global network focused on building communities for impact at scale. With 100+ communities of almost 24,000 change-driven entrepreneurs in more than 50 countries across five continents, Impact Hub is one of the world’s largest communities and accelerators for positive change. The programme is supported and funded by the European Union (European Social Fund) and the Senate of Berlin. 

How is Impact Incubator affected by Covid?

We take the Covid-19 situation very seriously and follow a safety-first policy. Through the use of technology, we’ve been able to maintain and in certain aspects even strengthen our programme delivery. We carefully align our policies with current developments and will do our best to support you whatever these may be.

Will my costs for travel and accommodation be reimbursed if I travel from outside Germany to Berlin?

All participants of the programme receive a stipend of EUR 2,200 per month, which should cover all costs incurred. In addition – but only for those startups that qualify and show high potential – we may also fund an ‘exposure trip’ to another Impact Hub outside of Germany for the purposes of implementing pilot projects or for traveling to conferences. 

Do I have to pay tax on the scholarship?

Yes, generally the scholarship falls under the “Einkommensteuer” (income tax) and is “Sozialversicherungspflichtig” (subject to social insurance contribution). Whether and how much tax you have to pay for the scholarship depends on your personal situation. Please contact your tax department and/or consultant.

Can I receive other benefits besides the scholarship such as Arbeitslosengeld, Elterngeld, Mutterschaftsgeld, BAföG?

No, your other benefits will be affected by this income.

Questions? Our Scouting Manager Idil Serifoglu is looking forward to hearing from you at [email protected].

Das Projekt Impact Incubator: Climate Tech wird gefördert aus Mitteln der Europäischen Union und des Landes Berlin im Rahmen des Europäischen Sozialfonds.

Application management partner F6S