Rhineland’s startup community has significantly evolved in the last 4 or 5 years. It feels like a true ecosystem with more people, better knowledge, stronger connections, and a focus on modernizing traditional German industries.
Home to nearly 18 million inhabitants, 68 universities, around 711,600 SMEs, and a large number of global corporations, the Rhineland is also a growing German startup hub, with one in five German startups now coming out of the Aachen-Cologne-Bonn area. The region, a traditional engineering and manufacturing hub, is leveraging this expertise to become a center for next-gen manufacturing. Young companies will find a network of startup support organizations in the Rhineland to support their growth, including incubators such as Startplatz in Cologne or Co:Forward in Aachen. In 2016, the regional government established six regional "Digital Hubs" to support startups and connect them with large industrial companies. The state of North Rhine-Westphalia supports startups with a range of programs, including networking and coaching support and the Gründerstipendium.NRW, a monthly grant of €1,000 for up to one year to help founders get innovative business ideas off the ground. Another state program, known as Meistergründungsprämie (MGP), is targeted at master craftsmen and women looking to transition to self-employment and offers funding for startups and investments in existing businesses. 6 Rhineland universities have also been granted €150 million to further develop their startup centers. NRW.Global Business promotes investment projects in North Rhine-Westphalia and facilitates networking with international business partners.
Ecosystem by the numbers
Advanced Manufacturing & Robotics
AI, Big Data & Analytics
Reasons to move your startup to Rhineland
Globally Leading Companies
Large Local Market
North-Rhine Westphalia State Government
Featured Articles from
Are you interested in diving deeper into this ecosystem? Drop us a message. Our Ambassadors and Partners can plug you in.