DBU aktuell No. 03 | 2019 | English

Information on Grant Support Activities of the German Federal Environmental Foundation (Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt)

Alexander Bonde and Jörg Lefévre at Hannover-fair. © Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt
Alexander Bonde and Jörg Lefévre at Hannover-fair.

1.) DBU-special-program promotes green start-ups

"Green start-ups connect prosperity, environmental sustainability and social justice. Since 2006, more than 1.2 million new jobs have been created in Germany. However, the green trend is hardly supported by funding programs. A special funding program focusing on environmental protection and sustainability does not exist," said DBU-secretary general Alexander Bonde at the Hannover-fair in April.

Recently, the DBU created a DBU-special program and provided a total of 1.5 million Euro. The program started during the Hannover-fair and promotes green start-up companies with a focus on digitization. Furthermore, young medium-sized companies in their dynamic development are supported. Central characteristics of the DBU-special program are low access barriers, extensive, expert advices, high flexibility and continuous, personal support with permanently available contact persons. 

Generally, the funding is targeted at individuals or young start-up teams who innovatively combine environmental, ecological and sustainability solutions with a focus on digitization. Especially, graduates but also experienced employees with specialist knowledge, come into question. The funding is limited up to 125,000 Euro per start-up for a period of two years. Founders find the link for applications here: https://www.dbu.de/start-ups. The founders with the best ideas will be selected and are invited to present them to a jury. 

The recently published green start-up monitor, a DBU-funded study by the Borderstep Institute for Innovation and Sustainability, Berlin, in cooperation with the Federal Association of German Start-Ups (BVDS), Berlin, shows that sustainable start-ups grow out of their niche existence. Accordingly, in 2018, 26 percent of young innovative growth companies in Germany would have come up with products and services that contribute to a "green economy" - an internationally competitive, ecologically and socially acceptable economy, referred to as "green start-ups". "Environmental challenges such as climate protection offer competitive market opportunities for companies - and green start-ups have understood that," says Alexander Bonde. At the Hannover-fair, he also referred to the classic DBU funding: "An innovative, environmentally friendly idea always has a chance at the DBU!"

DBU-green start-up funding - information and application: https://www.dbu.de/start-up

Green start-up monitor: https://www.dbu.de/123artikel38218_2362.html