Graduate Entrepreneur Fonds
Enterprising students and successful alumni of the Technical University of Delft and the Erasmus University Rotterdam have established Graduate Entrepreneur together, a structural partnership that will offer start-ups and scale-ups, in addition to funding, a network and coaching. The new platform aims to unify existing activities and offer unique growth opportunities to start-ups and scale-ups in various sectors, such as artificial intelligence, technology, social sciences and medicine. With this, TU Delft and Erasmus University Rotterdam will jointly offer entrepreneurship a more prominent place on their campuses.
TU Delft and Erasmus University Rotterdam offer top education and research that can compete with the best universities in the world. Less than 20 kilometers apart, the universities offer diverse studies to more than 40,000 students, and both universities are characterized by their versatile campuses and international character. While this is a good foundation for great start-ups, in practice there are still obstacles that prevent the majority of companies from surviving the first five years.
The objective of Graduate Entrepreneur is to drive on start-ups and scale-ups in the unified innovation cluster around Rotterdam and Delft. We do this by offering a platform that brings (student) entrepreneurs from both cities together and gives access to a network of fellow entrepreneurs, alumni and investors. In addition, the platform will offer a wide range of facilities, support and financing. The online platform can be found here: www.graduate.nl
The Graduate Entrepreneur Fund has the ambition to have around 20 to 30 new start-ups with pre-seed funding take their first steps every year. It is expected that a significant part of this number with additional seed funding will grow to scale-ups. The first closing of this fund is expected to take place in the third quarter of this year.
We have an excellent state of service in Delft with regard to incubation and validation. We need to scale this further so that we can compete with innovation clusters outside of the Netherlands. This initiative together with Rotterdam will further strengthen innovation and entrepreneurship. Never before in the Netherlands did alumni and students play such an important role.― Prof.dr.ir. Tim van der Hagen Rector Magnificus / Chairman Executive Board TU Delft