How to apply

Three times a year, we source aspiring entrepreneurs from a large pool of candidates. 

What to expect when you apply:

  1. Our team will reach out to you and check if you meet all criteria. See our FAQ for further details;
  2. You’ll be invited to our “What’s the deal” session, where we will explain the technical details.
  3. The next step is to participate in the Selection Days, an inspiring 2.5-day event in Utrecht, where you’ll have the opportunity to meet potential co-founders and the Holland Startup team. The program includes workshops, pitch training, investor talks and much more.
  4. After the selection days, you’ll talk with one of the partners if you are selected.

Our next cohort is the March 2023 cohort.

      Application timeline

      • Visit "Meet Holland Startup"

        The next edition is of this webinar is Monday 12-12

      • Join the "What's the deal" Session

        Join this webinar to learn all about the deal terms, investing and program.

      • Apply

        Check the requirements and apply to Holland Startup.

        - Full time
        - In the Netherlands

      • Interview

        A recruitment interview and test are part of the selection process.

      • Selection Days

        This is a 2.5-day program, with a Business Model Hackathon. Meet the team and the other co-founders. The selection days are held in our office in Utrecht.

      • Start of Program

        We hope you will be selected and join the program starting March 2023.

      How it works

      Once you have joined the program, you’ll experience a structured and well-guided approach to building your startup.

      • Our program consists of 7 clear stages to get from Team Forming and Ideation, through Discovery and Validation to your Growth phase. We provide you with all the necessary structure, frameworks, and playbooks tuned on the stage you and your company are in.
      • Regular meetings with your Venture Developer and with Holland Startup partners on a weekly to monthly basis, depending on the stage of your Startup.
      • Intensive support to design the product and assist you with your first deals, consisting of coaching, sales management, and masterclasses.
      • Your startup will be funded from the very start of the program.  After the Team Forming and Ideation phase,h, we will finance your company, using a staged investment process that includes Seed and pre-Series-A (co)investments, aligned with your progress and financial needs.
      • You will be part of a great community of builders. You’re surrounded by founders who have gone through the same process and have been where you are going. Maybe they’re your biggest source of knowledge and inspiration.
      • We are keen on helping you with your fundraising activities. We provide continued guidance, access to our network and on a regular basis organize fundraising events where you can present and pitch your startup to a carefully selected, invite-only audience of investors.
      • Guided from Utrecht, built in the Dutch city of your choice is how we operate. We offer shared office space and meeting rooms, but it is your choice where you reside.

      Application FAQ's

      Financial Questions

      What are the consequences of the investments that Holland Startup provides?

      We use fixed term-sheets for all our startups. Our share will range from 25% to 45%, depending on the number of rounds we finance.

      About decision making; how much as a founder can I influence the decisions being made?

      You, as co-founders, are the directors of the startup and have full autonomy. However, there is a list of reserved matters, for which you'll need approval. This is required to protect our investments.

      Process Questions

      You build SAAS companies. Are the SaaS companies B2B only, or do you also work with B2C initiatives?

      Our investments are restricted to software companies only, in particular with a SAAS business model.

      We have a preference for B2B, but we support B2C initiatives as well.  

      What happens when the initial startup you created together with HS does not work out? Would you go in a 'next iteration' startup or is it like a one-shot?

      In essence you need to meet the milestones set in the stage gates. If this doesn't work out, you can apply again, but this will depend on the situation.

      Does Holland Startup also assist in developing an idea and setting up a company in Holland that is aimed at beginning operations in a different country?

      Our network and all legal templates are Dutch based. We use The Netherlands as a testing market. Beginning operations in another country is therefor not likely.

      Is there a specific type of startups (Fintech, EdTech etc.) that are considered at Holland Startup?

      Our investment thesis is not restricted to a specific industry, but we are restricted to software only.

      Our portfolio consists primarily of FinTech, EduTech and HRTech startups, but we also recognize "smarter business" as an interesting sector. 

      How big is the average founder group?

      The founder group at the beginning of the program will range from 10 to 20 Entrepreneurs in Residence.

      From my experience, no investor wants to put money into a firm who has not proven “product-market fit”. How do you assist?

      We invest in aspiring entrepreneurs rather than in startups. For traditional funding, you would need a product and a market first, for which you need the funding. We break this vicious cycle.

      Can you enter the program at a later stage?

      No, you can't. The program is designed to invest in people, not in existing startups. If you already have a team, but not yet a product, you can apply individually.

      Who will own the intellectual property rights?

      The startup will own the IP from the discovery phase onwards. 

      Visa Questions

      Is a Visa required during the program?

      Yes, you must be legally permitted to work in The Netherlands for at least 9-12 months from your start date.

      Depending on the progress we can assist in a Startup-Visa, after 4-6 months in the program.

      Can the founders start to work full time after the company has been formed and visa sponsorship has been approved?

      No, you are required to join fulltime in the program from the start.

      Do you require physical presence in Utrecht for the whole 36 months?

      No, you can build the startup anywhere in The Netherlands, but some aspects in our program are face-2-face and require your presence in Utrecht.
      You are free to use our shared office space, during the program.

      Application Questions

      What are the requirements to join Holland Startup?

      You need to meet these criteria to join Holland Startup

      • At least a Bachelor’s degree (HBO/WO) in a relevant field;
        Fluent in English, written and spoken;
      • 0-8 years of relevant work experience;
      • You live in the Netherlands, preferably a commutable distance to Utrecht, or are in the position to move on short notice;
      • You are legally permitted to work in The Netherlands for at least 6-12 months from your start date.

      Do you want to know more?

      Meet Holland Startup at our next webinar, where you’ll meet Entrepreneurs, co-founders and the Holland Startup team. 

      It’s an excellent opportunity to experience what it is to build your company at Holland Startup.

      How we build startups