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Kickstart Launches New Application Round For Startups

Since 2016, Kickstart, one of Europe’s leading platforms for open innovation, has supported over 400 later-stage startups from over 80 countries, facilitating over 200 deals in the form of collaborations and commercial partnerships. So far, Kickstart alumni have collectively raised investments of more than CHF 2 billion, for example Planted, Cord, Keyless and Huma. Now, international scaleups (startups in a more mature business phase) have the opportunity to apply for the 2022 program.

Selected companies will benefit from tailored introductions and direct access to Kickstart’s vast Swiss and Austrian network, with the goal of landing commercial partnerships and deals with partner organizations, cities, universities and more.


Scaleups offering original, disruptive solutions, looking to tap into new revenue streams, and committed to delivering meaningful impact are encouraged to apply. “The topic of sustainability has now become the core of all activities. Innovation without sustainability considerations has no chance in the future,” explains Katka Letzing, Co-Founder and CEO of Kickstart Innovation.

The search for the solutions of tomorrow takes shape in the form of six verticals: Health & Wellbeing, Finance & Insurance, Food & Retail, New Work & Learning, Smart Cities and Intrapreneurship. Each vertical has a core focus on leading innovation trends as well as the needs of Kickstart’s established partners.

In addition, Kickstart unveils a brand new global identity, portraying the company’s evolution into an international enterprise committed to fast-forwarding innovation for a better future. Many well-known companies such as AXA, Coop, Swisscom, La Mobilière, PostFinance, Sanitas, The City of Zurich, Canton de Vaud, Credit Suisse, Galenica, CSS Insurance, have already recognized the added value that can be gained from such an enterprise.

Innovation Program

This September, successful applicants will join Kickstart’s intense 10-week open innovation program to scale their business through deals with our partner organizations. Over 100 entrepreneurs representing around 50 top quality scaleups will connect closely with executives from leading partner organizations to develop innovative partnerships that solve real business challenges and result in meaningful impact at scale.

Participants will benefit from business development and scaling in both Swiss and international markets. “Kickstart really helped us connect to key clients that grew our business, and we continue working with them to this day.” Alex Beck, CEO & Co-Founder of Clara.

In addition to building partnerships, Kickstart also provides access to a diversified investor network for later-stage startups and alumni raising funding rounds. Partners with corporate venture arms are actively involved, including Swisscom Ventures, AXA Venture Partners and others.