The Gründerstipendium.NRW opens up the opportunity to get your innovative business idea off the ground and enter the founders scene in your region. The Ministry of Economics, Innovation, Digitization and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia supports every founder who is at the beginning or the start of the business with a monthly scholarship of 1.000 Euro for a maximum of one year to start the business to facilitate the world of entrepreneurs. In addition, you will have the opportunity to exchange ideas in founding networks and to be accompanied by individual coaching.

Further information at


✓ Contacting an accredited start-up network (STARTPLATZ)
✓ Creation of a meaningful idea paper
✓ Personal presentation of the business idea and the idea paper in front of the jury
✓ For funding recommendation by the jury: Application via the web form provided by the startup network and provided by Projektträger Jülich
✓ After approval: start of the 12-month eligibility period


Eligibility conditions

Individual founders or teams of up to three people, each of whom has reached the age of eighteen and who have their permanent first residence in
North Rhine-Westphalia, are supported. In addition, it is assumed that they either want to become self-employed with a company in NRW within the next twelve months, or that this business has already been established within the past twelve months. The timeframe for setting up a business therefore covers up to one year before and one year after the application for a scholarship.

Conveyor frame

From the moment the grant is awarded, the founders receive 1,000 euros per month and person over a maximum term of one year. In addition, the scholarship holders benefit from coaching offered by accredited start-up networks as start-up support. These networks have relevant experience in supporting business start-ups. The mediated coaches advise the start-up founders individually and, together with the founders, prepare care plans tailored to the business idea.

Application / Selection of the founding network

In order to apply for a start-up scholarship, you must first contact one of the accredited start-up networks (e.g., STARTUPPLACE). The founders are free to choose the network. It is recommended to look for one in the vicinity of the planned company location in order to ensure close coordination and facilitate the exchange. The start-up network advises and guides through the further application process. The networks offer the founders an initial consultation and can help with the preparation of the meaningful idea paper.

Sponsorship / expiry of the jury session

The funding decision is made by a qualified jury appointed by the respective founding network. Each jury consists of three to six members with relevant founding experience in the regional environment. The jurors make their selection on the basis of a paper of ideas submitted in advance and a personal presentation in which the founders introduce their concept. Directly afterwards, the presenters will have the opportunity to answer specific questions of the jury. The jury’s decision on the funding recommendation will be promptly communicated by the supervising network and the selected founders invited to submit their application via a web form. After the application has been submitted in full, the grant application will be decided.

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