Belgium

Antwerp

Early-Globalization Phase

Antwerp has a very strong economic backbone for startups to leverage, with the second largest port in Europe and the second largest oil and chemical cluster in the world.

Claude Marinower
Vice Mayor for Economy, Innovation and Digitalisation

Sub-sector Strengths

Life Sciences

Flanders has five universities with life sciences departments and research teams and four academic hospitals for research collaboration. Additionally, Antwerp-based imec is Europe’s largest independent nanotech R&D center and is developing innovative tools for the life sciences. Home to a concentration of hospitals and with the presence of Institute of the Tropical Medicine and Bluehealth Innovation Center, Antwerp is the perfect breeding ground for innovation in healthcare.

Smart Cities

The city of Antwerp, the region of Flanders and IMEC are collaborating to make Antwerp and it's port a smart city living lab to help startups test and commercialize their products. Since 2014, more than 120 smart city projects in Belgium worth around $1.1 billion have been financed by the European Investment Bank and Belfius. The Beacon, an innovation hub for IoT and AI, was launched in 2018 with a focus on Industry 4.0, logistics, and Smart Cities.

Why you should invest in Antwerp

SOFTWARE STARTUP OUTPUT
900-1,300
GLOBAL AVG.
1,010
ECOSYSTEM VALUE
$7.7 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$5 bn
Top 30 Global Ecosystem
Funding
9
Exit Growth
INDEX
5
Output Growth
INDEX
9
Funding Growth
INDEX

Reasons to move your startup to Antwerp

EARLY-STAGE FUNDING PER STARTUP
$199 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$284 k
TOTAL EARLY-STAGE FUNDING
$219 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$837 m
SOFTWARE ENGINEER SALARY
$49.4 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$58.3 k

Strong Infrastructure

Includes nine incubators and accelerators, a StartupVillage facility for growing startups, and university research centers.

R&D support

Organizations can deduct up to 85% of their net innovation income from their taxable base. The Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship agency provides structural funding of up to 60%.

Startup Community

Startup Genome
Partners & Members

MEMBER
City of Antwerp

Featured Articles from
Local Ambassadors

Apply to be an ambassador
We still don't have any ambassador in Antwerp. Contact Us to apply to be our first ambassador.

Get connected

Are you interested in diving deeper into this ecosystem? Drop us a message. Our Ambassadors and Partners can plug you in.