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Record number of EXIST start-up grants awarded in 2020

May 4, 2021

Despite the corona pandemic, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) has documented a record number of applications and approvals for EXIST start-up grants. The University of Stuttgart ranks in the top four universities with the most approvals.
[Picture: EXIST]

With 426 applications for EXIST start-up grants [de] in 2020, the demand for start-up funding from the BMWi was the highest since it began in 2007. At 229, the number of approved start-ups also reached a new record. In comparison to 2019, this is an increase of 63 applications and 10 approvals; the approval rate is 54 percent. This shows the initial sucess of the new start-up funding culture by EXIST Potential [de], which aims to increase the number of start-ups.

Top 10 for approvals in 2020
  1. Technical University of Munich: 17 approvals
  2. RWTH Aachen University: 15 approvals
  3. Technical University Darmstadt: 7 approvals
  4. University of Stuttgart: 7 approvals
  5. University of Applied Science Munich: 6 approvals
  6. Technical University Berlin: 6 approvals
  7. University of Potsdam: 5 approvals
  8. Leibniz University Hannover: 5 approvals
  9. Karlsruhe Institut of Technology (KIT): 5 approvals
  10. Technical University Braunschweig: 5 approvals

It is also pleasing to note that the number of female entrepreneurs has risen from 16 percent in 2019 to 18 percent in 2020. One of the aims of the EXIST start-up grant is to encourage female entrepreneurs and awaken their start-up mentality [de], and to motivate female students, graduates and scientists to consider becomming self-employed entrepreneurs.

Bavaria received the most approvals for EXIST start-up grants (49 approvals from 89 applications), followed by North-Rhine Westphalia (36 approvals from 75 applications) and Baden-Württemberg (31 approvals from 78 applications).

The most popular technology sectors in 2020 included the software sector, with 150 applications; followed by the internet sector with 64 applications and the field of communication technologies with 35 applications.

EXIST start-up grants for Uni Stuttgart start-ups

New companies at the University of Stuttgart regularly receive EXIST start-up grants. One example is the Startup Twenty-One Semiconductors, which has been granted funding from High-Tech Gründerfonds. 

Source: Project manager Jülich (PtJ): EXIST Statistics


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This image shows Melanie Minderjahn

Melanie Minderjahn

M. A.

Research Associate, PR Manager

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