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What do the winners of 2019 think about this Competition?

This is what three of the winners 2019 would like to mention about the Academic Startup Competition and the trip to the US. 


Bart Sanders from STENTiT

“Being a MedTech startup with international ambition, the US is a key target market. Since regulations, reimbursement and the entire healthcare system operates differently from what we have back here, the learnings from other relevant companies already operating in the States, gives you a unique insight in their real world experience. Besides, the community is very open and willing to share its valuable network to support your international aspirations. In addition, spending several weeks with like-minded entrepreneurs from The Netherlands, also creates a strong community that helps each other out even after being back home. The Academic Startup Competition is therefore definitely worth the experience.”

Aike van Vugt from VSParticle

“Winning the Academic Startup Competition enabled us to be submerged for a longer time in one of the most innovative hotspots on earth. Stepping out of the day to day business gave us the time to rethink the decisions we made and the overall strategy. Going through this process with 9 others Academic startups made this process even more valuable. After the trip we refined our strategy and validated our proposition with different industry leaders from the bay area.”

Vincent Franken from Findest 

Between amazing technical innovators like MOSA-meat, VS-particle, and Lipcoat, who would have thought that we even had a chance to make it to the finals?  Then we won and got to go to Silicon Valley with three members of the Findest founding team. Next to the well-designed scale-up program and the help from our own mentor Paul Kallmes, I must confess most valuable were the borrels with the Silicon Valley Dutchies like Stef van Grieken (Google). After a couple of years in the Valley, they learned a completely different way of thinking and asked completely different questions about our businessmodel: “Why isn’t this for free?”, and “What would Findest do if money was limitless?”. We flew back full of inspiration and a toolbox full of tricks to scale the company from 15 people then, to now 26 people. So do I recommend joining the Academic Startup Competition? Definitely!”