VENTURE KICK: VK Program to Advance Entrepreneurs in Switzerland


Year of Grant: 2015

Location: Switzerland


In the very early stages, startups bear high risks that are neither carried by public money nor by private investors. While academic innovators often have bright ideas, they lack the business experience and exposure to the "right people" to transform the idea(s) into successful business ventures.


Venture Kick Foundation (VK) is a Swiss-based non-profit organization founded in 2007. It runs a philanthropic initiative of a private consortium that turns early-stage academic innovation into entrepreneurial activity with a knock-on effect on job creation, societal and economic prosperity.


Our Foundation is supporting this program to help identify promising business ideas from Swiss universities at an early stage. The goal is to accelerate time-to-market and increase the appeal of these young companies for professional investors.


Following a highly competitive and selective process, those innovators with the most favorable business ideas will not only be provided with training and know-how of experiences experts and entrepreneurs, but will also have access to a national network of investors.


This is to support them to successfully incorporate their business, create jobs and contribute back to the community. Members of the Consortium include reputable Swiss foundations like Gebert Rüf, Erns Göhnert, Foundation Lombard Odier and Foundation Techno.


The VK entrepreneurs program has been highly successful in transferring academic innovations into the market, which have created high value-added jobs and spurred social and economic prosperity in Switzerland.


From the 400 projects funded to date since 2007, over 270 innovative high-tech companies will emerge by the end of 2015, which should provide over 3,500 skilled jobs and more than CHF 700 million to boost economy growth. 56 Venture Kick-supported startups additionally made the list of the top 100 Swiss startups in 2015.