Everything you need to know

Does my company qualify for the German Accelerator program?

Applicants must be promising emerging tech or life science companies that are incorporated in Germany and see great potential in the U.S. or Southeast Asian markets. Applicants should have a strong team of founders and have a product or service that is already in one market or will be very shortly. Revenue is not required but considered a big plus. The companies must dedicate resources to operate in two locations during the program. The German Accelerator program is covered by the EU's de minimis aid regulation. Please note that there is a limit of €200,000 of de miminis benefits you are allowed to receive within the current and the two calendar years before. You will be required to complete a de minimis declaration as part of your application process. An official notice will be issued upon program completion. For more information: http://bit.ly/Deminimis_Info

Special requirements for our Life Sciences program: Companies within our five segments (Medical Devices, Diagnostics, Digital Health, Therapeutics, and Platform Technologies/ Biotech) are encouraged to apply.

Is there a company age limit to qualify for the program?

There is no age limit for companies to participate. Qualification depends on a variety of factors, such as U.S./ Southeast Asia market potential, team, and funding, among others.

Are you looking for companies of a certain size?

We look for startups that are ready to expand to the U.S. or Southeast Asia, regardless of their funding stage. The size of participating companies varies widely, from teams of five to larger.

Can I apply if our company or founders are not from Germany?

As long as your company is incorporated in Germany, you are welcome to apply. Founder nationality doesn’t impact selection into the program.

How much does it cost to participate in the program?

All program services, including mentoring and office space, are free to participating companies. Companies, however, are responsible for associated costs, such as travel and accommodations.

Special requirements for our Silicon Valley and New York programs: Upon acceptance into the program, each selected company will be asked to confirm their participation, preferred program location, and start date. To guarantee their spot in the program, each selected company is required to pay a participation deposit of €1,000 NET (within 3 business days of confirming program participation). The deposit will be refunded in full upon successful graduation at the end of the program.

How and when do I apply?

You can apply online at any time after choosing the right program for your company and following our application steps:

Silicon Valley and New York:

You can apply online at any time, however, there are stipulated application deadlines for each class commencing in January, April, July and October.

Life Sciences: We accept applications anytime, there are no deadlines. Our Selection Committee meets every 6-8 weeks to review all submitted applications.

Southeast Asia: You can apply online at any time, however there are stipulated application deadlines for each class commencing in Singapore in March, June, and September.

How do you select companies for the program?

We have established an expert committee which evaluates all applications based on a predefined set of admission criteria. There are different selection processes for our programs, which are listed below.

Silicon Valley, New York
1) Initial Application: Provide your pitch deck and answer about 10 short questions about your company.
2) Deep Dive: Fill out a questionnaire to provide additional, more profound information.
3) Final Selection: Pitch online in front of our Selection Committee and be prepared for a Q&A session afterwards.

Southeast Asia
1) Initial Application: Answer about 10 short questions about your company.
2) Deep Dive: Provide your pitch deck and application video. Additionally, fill out a questionnaire to provide additional, more profound information.
3) Final Selection: Pitch online in front of our Selection Committee and be prepared for a Q&A session afterwards.

Life Sciences
1) Initial application can be submitted online at any time, there are no deadlines.
2) Selection Committee reviews all applications every 6-8 weeks and evaluates who will be accepted to travel to Cambridge, MA for a deep-dive meeting.
3) Invitation sent to attend Orientation, the core of which is an intense one-day deep-dive meeting with external experts to identify areas German Accelerator Life Sciences team could provide support.

How long does the selection process take?

Silicon Valley, New York and Southeast Asia: From application deadline until acceptance, the selection process takes approximately 6 weeks.

Life Sciences: We accept applications anytime, there are no deadlines. Our Selection Committee meets every 6-8 weeks, therefore allow for 2-3 months between applying and joining the Orientation Phase.

Will you protect my intellectual property?

Our application process does not require you to provide information about your “secret sauce”, and you will not be required to disclose information about details of your proprietary technology. We will, however, ask for information that demonstrates your business progress, funding status, and market opportunity. This information is critical to help us evaluate your fit for the program.

Can I re-apply to the program?

Our program is highly competitive, and, unfortunately, we can’t accommodate all applicants. We do our best to select the companies that we believe have the greatest potential to benefit from the program. If you are not accepted the first time you apply, you are welcome to re-apply for another program start date. One piece of advice: You have the best chance of being admitted if you update your application demonstrating any additional company and business progress before re-submitting.

When does the program start and how long does it take?

Depending on your chosen program, the start date and duration differ:

Silicon Valley and New York: The program starts on the first Monday of each quarter and lasts throughout the following three months. We host 4 classes per year.

Life Sciences: Please allow for 2-3 months between applying, being accepted by the Selection Committee, and joining German Accelerator Life Sciences. The initial Orientation is a one month program designed for the company to gain a thorough understanding of the U.S. landscape. Successful completion of the Orientation program is a prerequisite for admittance to either the Prep program (3-6 months) or Access program (6-9 months).

Southeast Asia: The Southeast Asia program runs for 5 months, with three classes a year, commencing in Singapore in March, July, and October.

Which team member should attend?

At least one of the founders or C-level executives should attend the program. However, we recommend that at least two people participate in the program, including one with significant business background and expertise.

Do I have to be present in the U.S. or Southeast Asia for the entire duration of the program?

Depending on the chosen program track, the answer differs.

Silicon Valley, New York, Southeast Asia : Yes. We are committed to making the program a valuable experience for your company, and we expect the same level of commitment from you. To get the most out of the program, you are required to spend at least 75% of the program duration in the program location.

Life Sciences: For our Life Sciences program, participants typically come to Cambridge (MA) for a deep-dive meeting and 1-2 workshops. Most of our remaining work is done remotely.

Do you help with visa/immigration issues?

We are happy to support your visa application with a letter of recommendation. However, as visa/immigration issues can vary according to your personal situation, we recommend that you obtain expert advice and/or contact the U.S. or Singaporean embassy.

Mentoring – what do I need to know?

Our mentor network consists of experienced entrepreneurs, industry experts, and leading investors. Based on your company’s needs, we will match you with one or several individuals with the relevant experience and expertise to support your company during the program. In addition to this, you will have opportunities to interact with and learn from our network of mentors and experts, including focused workshops and regular events.

What happens after the program is over?

You will become part of our active alumni network that support each other with ongoing knowledge exchange and contact. Your mentors and the German Accelerator team will remain close advisors to you and your company.

Who is behind the program, and why are you doing this?

We are a team of successful entrepreneurs and investors who truly enjoy helping German startups become global category leaders. Our program is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) - it’s their belief that investing in startups is directly investing in innovation.

Can I stop by your office to say hello?

Yes, please stop by to introduce yourself and find out more about the program, especially if you are bringing German chocolate. Be sure to schedule an appointment in advance. Reach out to one of our offices here.

to top