Start it @kbc
An immediate success
Tuesday, June 17, 2014 —
On 20 November 2013, KBC – together with Accenture, Flanders DC, the University of Antwerp, Cronos and Mobile Vikings – launched Start it @kbc, an incubator that not only gives new start-ups a place to set up operations, but above all provides them with support and advice to facilitate the sustainable development of their ideas into a successful business model.
At present, 49 fledgling start-up businesses have taken up residence in the KBC Tower in Antwerp. Those chosen to do so are developing innovations in the fields of high technology, e-platforms, sustainability, mobility, etc. They are supported in their efforts by the Start it Academy with its 33 training modules, by one-on-one coaching provided by expert partners and by inspiring public events.
KBC is currently working with Mobile Vikings to see if this unique concept can also be developed in Hasselt. Vlerick Business School has also offered its support in bringing the project to Ghent, and KBC is looking into the possibility of providing additional space for new start-ups in the current location in the KBC Tower in Antwerp.
Lastly, the founding partners have now welcomed iMinds on board as the seventh partner, allowing Start it @kbc to fully plug into the best start-up tech communities in Belgium.
Start it is also working flat out on establishing a virtual community. Start it is creating an inspiring website which will give start-up businesses a platform to have their say. With their experiences, setbacks and successes, they are the perfect sounding board to help and encourage fellow entrepreneurs and other people starting up a business to take the plunge. The new Start it site will be launched at the end of June.
Furthermore, Start it has also developed a tool which will offer start-ups the opportunity to get in contact with experts online and to work together on their business model.
Together, the partners selected all 49 of the start-ups on the basis of their original ideas for contributing to the development of a sustainable society.
Start-ups who applied to participate but were not selected didn't go home empty handed though. In addition to receiving individual feedback, they are still welcome to take part in any of the activities being organised around the Start it @kbc theme, including events, informal discussion, workshops (and more) about both practical and creative themes such as innovation, marketing and sales techniques, business models, finance and insurance, legal and tax matters, organisation and entrepreneurship. They can also participate in and become part of the virtual community. In fact, a number of them have already been taken under the wing of some of the partners.
Interested start-ups can still apply on the startit.be website.
KBC is taking the opportunity of the KBC Group Investor Day to draw up a status report on certain products and services, and to set out its plans for the future, including those for Belgium. Read more about it in this notice. Additional information about the strategy and KBC Group Investor Day itself is available at www.kbc.com.