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Start it Accelerate

Sep 19, 2022

Start it Accelerate is here to help driven, business-minded founders grow their business and move beyond borders. We are the largest startup ecosystem in Belgium, made up of hundreds of startups, scale-ups, mentors & experts. As a founder your network gets a significant boost, and together we all have more impact. We're now accepting applications for our fall cohort! Sign up for our next pitch wave before September 19th.

Our programs

Start it @KBC & @CBC

Start it @KBC and Start it @CBC fast-track your growth as a startup and as an entrepreneur. All you need to bring is your motivation and desire to make a positive impact on the world.

We provide you with mentors and partners to guide you, personalised coaching to help you through your growing pains, a huge network to tap into, and so much more.

After a one-year journey designed to bring you closer to your ambitions, you’ll stay part of the community long-term.

Start it Fashion & Creative

Start it Fashion & Creative is a new program designed to help pre-startups, advanced startups and scale-ups navigate the fashion industry.

We also welcome recent graduates and experienced employees with a corporate background who want to take the leap into entrepreneurship.

The accelerator complements the existing acceleration programs of Start it Accelerate, while meeting the specific needs and ambitions of fashion and creative startups.

Why apply?

Our accelerator works with innovative businesses of all industries and all startup & growth phases. We’re looking for enthusiastic & open-minded founders of all backgrounds, genders, ages and nationalities.

  • No strings attached: Start it Accelerate DOES NOT ask for equity, money or expect you to become a customer of our partners. All we ask for is motivation and engagement.

  • Grow your network: Start it Accelerate is the #1 Belgian ecosystem of startups, scale-ups, mentors and experts. Start it Fashion & Creative members will get to join a fashion & creative SIG (Special Interest Group) to learn more about themes such as hardware development, sustainability & SAAS platforms.

  • Grow your business: Get guidance on funding, get connected to business partners and get valuable advice from our mentors and experts. Start it Fashion & Creative startups will get to meet individually with a panel of industry experts who focus on key industry challenges.

  • Grow your skills: Get smarter at the Start it Academy, tailored to the needs of our startups. Start it Fashion & Creative offers 6 workshops specifically focused on fashion & creation on top of our regular training offer.

  • Grow your market: Move beyond borders thanks to our international partners, our hubs in New York and Budapest, as well as the global community through our GAN membership.

  • Personalised coaching: We assign a member of our team to you to advise you, to match you to our volunteer mentors and partners, and to guide you through the events, workshops and promotional opportunities that are most relevant to you. Start it Fashion & Creative startups get an additional 16 hours of coaching and will meet with a panel of industry experts who focus on key industry challenges.

  • Boost that bootstrapping: You can use our co-working spaces in Antwerp, Brussels, Budapest, Ghent, Gyor, Hasselt, Kortrijk, Leuven, New York & Prague + get over $1 million of perks through GAN.

Who should apply?

Our founder-centric accelerator welcomes motivated, business-minded founders of all stripes to join our community and reach for their dreams.

We're looking for:

  • enthusiastic & open-minded founders
  • founders of all backgrounds, genders, ages and nationalities
  • businesses of all sectors and all startup & growth phases

Please apply if you:

  • have developed or are developing innovative products or services
  • have the ambition, potential and drive to scale your business

We're there for startups in all stages (ideation through to scale) and industries, as long as your business contributes positively to humanity and the world.

Need more info?

Join us for our info sessions to hear all about how we help startups and how to apply, and bring all your burning questions.

Info sessions Start it @KBC & @CBC (click one of the dates below for the registration link):

Info sessions Start it Fashion & Creative:


Start it @KBC


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How can we help?

The Leuven MindGate team is at your disposal for any questions about the Leuven Innovation Region. Do you want to invest, work or study in the region? We can help you find your way.

We also facilitate collaboration and innovation between companies, knowledge institutes and government within the Leuven Innovation Region, and we are happy to guide any of these stakeholders towards innovation.