SuperNova is coming back on October 8 — 11, 2020

The word is out: SuperNova is coming back and will be bigger & better.

From October 8 — 11 2020, Het Eilandje in Antwerp will once again be transformed into a place where entrepreneurs, professionals, creatives, innovators and investors gather to get inspired, empowered and to network.

Here’s a look at SuperNova 2018 in numbers:

  • 47 speakers

  • 90+ companies at the Tech Fair

  • 376 pitching minutes by 47 scale-ups from 13 European countries

  • 185 VCs attending from 14 different countries

  • 1,000+ one-on-one meetings in the first two days

  • More than 30,000 visitors for the weekend alone from 23 different countries

If you’re as excited as us for the next edition of SuperNova, tell us how you’d like to be a part of it and we’ll get in touch with you for the next steps!

A Glimpse of SuperNova 2018


SuperNova 2018 is a wrap. Months of preparation for us culminated into 35000 visitors, 27 keynotes, 20 sofa sessions, 47 scale-up pitches, 90 companies to discover at the Tech Fair and 200 demos to experience at the Expedition in 16 different locations.

The team from had a blast, we sure hope you enjoyed it as well!

Why SuperNova

Europe is home to more than 5,596 scale-ups in the tech sector. This is a 28% growth from the previous year and we are definitely moving a step further in the right direction. Yet, we must not be too complacent. We are still lagging behind compared to bigger players in the United States and Asia, and there is a strong momentum going that we cannot lose. The question is: What can we do to fast-track the growth of scale-ups even further?

There are two factors that are important in fast-tracking the growth of scale-ups: access to capital and access to an ecosystem. Both factors are directly correlated, as ecosystems with a higher concentration of scale-ups are able to leverage big investments. With this in mind, we set up to create a European platform to help scale-ups reduce time and fast-track their business plans. believes that by bringing tech companies, global investors and promising talent together, we can accelerate growth and squeeze time at the same time.

For this reason, we co-organized SuperNova with Flanders DC to bring visionary solutions, technologies and companies together.

SuperNova for Professionals

A total of 47 speakers graced the main stage and the sofa sessions of the SuperNova Conference to share their visions and insights about technology and the future.

Here are some key insights:

  • “The next innovations are going to be the size of red blood cels.” - Ray Kurzweil, one of the world’s leading investors, thinkers and futurists

  • “Circularity is the key to our future. ”- Angelo Vermeulen, space systems researcher, biologist and artist

  • “We have to stop changing the planet and start changing ourselves. The more we design ourselves, the less we have to change the planet” - Neil Harbisson, the world’s first officially recognized cyborg

Next to the Conference, the SuperNova Tech Fair was also home to 90+ companies for four days and 13 of our members happily shared their latest products, solutions and innovations to the 4,120 professionals in attendance:

  • Beeple

  • Bright Analytics

  • Collibra

  • Dropsolid

  • ML6

  • NGData

  • Playpass

  • Robovision

  • Sparkcentral

  • Spott

  • Teamleader

  • The Glue

  • Unified Post (with BilltoBox)

Our partners - KBC, EY, BNP Paribas Fortis & Cronos - also brought their expertise at the Tech Fair as industry leaders at the forefront of technology & innovation.

Concretely: There were a total of 1,000 one-on-one meetings scheduled in the first two days of SuperNova. Talk about time squeezing in action!

Bringing Scale-Ups and VCs Together

One of the key highlights of SuperNova is the two-day investor pitching program where we had 47 scale-ups pitching on stage. From flowers to robots, these pitching companies came from 13 different countries and were represented by 83 delegates.

Among the 47 pitching scale-ups are 11 of our members (Aproplan, Baunat, Guardsquare, Ontoforce, Piesync, Qover, Secure Code Warrior, Silverfin, Spott, The Glue and UnifiedPost) who rightfully earned their keep to grace the stage and deliver their 8-minute pitches. All pitching companies were exclusively invited along with our co-curating VCs - JVP, Columbia Lake Partners, Fortino Capital, Prime Ventures, Runa Capital, Smartfin Capital, Force Over Mass Capital, HPE Growth Capital, Idinvest Partners and Volta Ventures. 

Aside from the pitches, SuperNova also gave the 185 VCs in attendance the opportunity to schedule meetings with their scale-ups of interest and discuss future collaboration opportunities with them on the spot. A total of 336 meetings were scheduled via our networking tool.


Reverse Pitch


We also turned the tables and gave six investors the 2-minute opportunity to pitch about their companies:

  • Uri Adoni - Partner at Jerusalem Ventur Partners

  • Ekaterina Almasque - Managing Director at Samung Catalyst Fund

  • Lilian Li - Investor at Eight Roads

  • Anthony Keusters - Investment Manager at Sofina

  • Maxim Filippov - Investor at Draper Esprit

  • Nicolas Iordanov - Principal at Iris Capital

A big thanks to MeetDistrict for building a cozy space for the scale-ups and VCs to meet and talk business in style.

Relive #SuperNova18

You can find more pictures in the gallery.
Pictures by Fille Roelants Photography and Simon Robbrecht

Thank you for joining us and we look forward to welcoming you again in the next edition!
Because tomorrow is unstoppable.

Jane McGonigal and Tim Harford teaching us about their daring views on innovation and the future

In the last decades, technology has changed and altered the way we live our lives in many ways. Most of us don’t even realize this, but how we work, move and communicate have changed immensely. It  is an inevitable part of our life that will continue to change as well as evolve. Besides the impact of technology on our daily lives, the business world also has changed immensely, much thanks to technology. New ways of working arise, as well as new technologies are making things much more efficient in the workplace.This digital transformation applicable in multiple industries presents itself as a huge opportunity for businesses and professionals to grow and improve further.


One of the world’s top innovators, Jane McGonigal has a daring view on the business of tomorrow, by referring to this future as a return to the past and emphasizing the importance of games and virtual reality. McGonigal claims that games will find their way into our daily lives, but they will also become more important in business. With her innovating view on the future, McGonigal wants everyone to think as a futurist; “to create something new, you have to be able to imagine how things can be different”. And the future is a place where everything can be different. Moreover, she declares that there will be a shift towards working less and gaming more.  Virtual reality for instance will become major tool for treating pain, anxiety and depression. So far, several studies have shown that side effects and risks of addiction are significantly reduced by giving someone virtual reality and lower doses of medication. Jane McGonigal will be sharing and pitching her viewpoints and ideas for the future at the SuperNova Conference on Friday, September 28th.


Tim Harford is an English economist and journalist who lives in Oxford. Being described by the New Statesman as ‘perhaps the best popular economics writer in the world’, Harford mainly focuses on how the economy of the future will be influencing our daily lives.

More specifically he claims that we should ignore the daring and focus on simple, humble stuff because it will shape our future lives. Harford focuses on three main examples in order to illustrate this. The first one is administrative data, meaning that more and more data is being gathered in digital form. That makes it accessible to researchers – and others. As this happens, he claims that we’re going through a revolution in understanding how our economies and societies work. Second he discusses the importance of prediction machines, the best way to get a handle on “artificial intelligence” is not as a source of super-intelligent life, but as a source of inexpensive predictions, smoothing travel and supply chains. Last but not least there are CubeSats which is a satellite used to be a half billion dollar project, but the new Cubesats are 10cm on a side and can be sent into orbit for a few hundred thousand. To finish with Harford states that we’re now gaining unprecedented high-frequency data about everywhere on the planet, and it’s going to transform our understanding of how we all live. SuperNova features Tim Harford and many other international experts who will be sharing their daring viewpoints and ideas for the future. and Flanders DC collaborated to organize the first edition of SuperNova, a one-of-a-kind event where game-changers and businesses of tomorrow meet and entrepreneurs, professionals and creatives connect to get inspired and empowered. This four-day event on September 27-30 aims to encourage collaboration and networking as the catalyst to growth opportunities and success. It invites thought leaders on stage to share their viewpoints on the impact of technology and their daring views for the future. Community Update - July 2018

As one of our goals for is to build and grow a vibrant ecosystem, we’d like to share with you the latest news in our community.

Even if summer is in full swing in Belgium, there are still lots of exciting news and updates to share about our network.

Congratulations to Award Winners

Cloudalize raised four million euros from the investment fund of the Hong Kong telecom company Li Ka-Shing

Teamleader is the winner of the Scale-Up Company Award For Excellence 2018 at the data News Awards for Excellence 2018

Meet our Exhibiting Members at SuperNova

Beeple is a tech-scale up company founded in Belgium. Its aim is to improve the process of planning, time registration, schedule, screen and check in of flexible employees.

BilltoBox is the commercial brand of UnifiedPost. They provide a complete technology portfolio for identity management, document processing, robotic accounting and apps with added value.

BrightAnalytics is a user-friendly and intuitive management reporting platform that provides you comprehensive and clear financial and operational reports anytime, anywhere

With a mission to make digital business easy, Dropsolid helps their clients to enable digital transformation and introduce digital business models within their organisation, based on strategy and scalable technical architecture

ML6 is about empowering business with Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. They help companies for the challenges of tomorrow and foster the digital Al first revolution with its broad expertise

NGDATA helps brands in data-rich industries, such as financial services, telecom, media/entertainment, utilities and hospitality, to achieve data-driven customer centricity by enabling them to deliver smarter, more connected customer experiences

PlayPass is all about events and technology. They provide RFID solutions to help clients gain valuable insights into the operational flow of an event. They also enhance and streamline the event experience for all parties involved – from the promotional organization to the event visitor to the event’s partners and sponsor

Qover offers Insurance-as-a-Service by creating their own insurance products. Thanks to their open API or white label solutions, Qover allows anyone to starts selling insurance within minutes

Robovision analyses, rethinks and optimizes current steps in processes by applying deep learning and other machine learning techniques

Sparkcentral has the fastest customer routing and prioritization technology in the business and innovative workflow optimization and reporting tools

Spott is the reference for interactive and shoppable content –from well-known TV-shows to vloggers or other branded content

Teamleader unifies CRM, project planning and invoicing in a simple and intelligent tool helping businesses work smarter

The Glue enables financial institutions to develop innovative financial services, fast. Its solution creates a customer centric layer, on top of the core legacy systems, to  help protect and prolong the lifespan of the existing infrastructure investments

Mark Your Calendars for Our Next Meetup: September 27 after SuperNova



International expansion is a crucial step for companies to take their firms to the next level.  But what is the best way to make the big jump to foreign markets and conquer them? 

Join us for our next meetup on September 27, just right after SuperNova!


We’re keeping it close to the Waagnatie, so you can meet and mingle with top global VCs and other European scale-ups attending SuperNova, while learning from the international panel on how to expand your business to other countries.

All members get 20% off their SuperNova Conference Passes.  Contact us to get your discount!

We'd love to know more about your achievements and news, so we can share it with our growing community.

Reduce time in managing customer relationships

It’s no secret that CRM tools and solutions allow you to store contact information, accounts, leads and sales opportunities in one central location. It is built around people and relationships and that’s exactly why it can be so valuable for a fast-growing business! Especially for the growing number of scale-ups in Europe, it could be useful to know how you can adapt and optimize your CRM systems and make these hard-working for you and your growing number of employees.

The good news is that CRM systems of today offer great scalability, which means that they will fit your needs now and will continue to fit your needs while scaling up your business further. You can add more users as your workforce grows, and the constantly evolving suite of modules also allows you to add new components as you expand, meaning that you won’t have to purchase a whole new system – you can just make your existing system better and bigger. The most important thing is making sure all your employees are properly trained on the role of CRM in your business and the processes that are in place.

Here are lessons learned on how you can improve the usage of CRM in your growing company:

·       Make CRM training mandatory during the Orientation Week

It is important that new hires responsible for sales and business development are aware of the CRM processes in place in your organization. Making this a mandatory training during their onboarding days will allow them to understand how your CRM is configured and give them an introduction to your marketing and sales pipeline. It is best to tailor-fit the training per individual, but you can also do this in batches per function to make it scalable in your organization. This is very important as staff across your organization will require different levels of support according to their role and responsibilities in the company.

·       Schedule CRM refresher sessions for current employees
It’s often the case that training is accounted for up until the point of implementation but neglected in the longer term. It’s wise to put a plan in place for refresher trainings, so that your employees continue to use your CRM efficiently. Several months in, your super-users can either identify the best practices to emulate or simply provide feedback on what processes need to be improved. If they think there’s room for improvement, it’s a good opportunity to review the current processes in place and provide follow-up training sessions. A culture of continued learning can only benefit your company, as it continues to keep your staff are engaged and motivated.

·       Implement mobile functionalities for sales team
The good news about most CRM software is that they are typically also available via mobile apps, where you can access and update data on the go. Because the information is in real-time, mobile employees are always completely in sync and up-to-date on their information. This reduces the need for the employees to complete their administrative work on their desks, which is the main reason why employees tend to make updates in the first place.

·       Evaluate your CRM regularly
It is important to have an evaluation process in place to review the performance and usability of the systems you’re implementing internally. The key question to ask yourself is whether the CRM is making the company more efficient or is simply just an administrative burden to your employees. While it takes time, due diligence and a lot of effort to collect internal feedback, it provides insight on what new functionalities need to be implemented or what processes need to be optimized.

For growing companies that will only invest in a CRM system for the first time, it’s important to find a suitable CRM supplier that fits the objectives of your business.  It could be useful to compare the different CRM offerings and suppliers based on the following criteria:

1.     Business Experience
It’s better to choose a CRM supplier that has relevant experience and know-how in the industry your business is active in. This is an important consideration because then they have already put in a lot of work to tailor-fit their platform based on the common pain points and struggles relevant to your industry.

2.     Partner Network
Most European firms want a local partner to provide support during and after implementing the CRM system. To verify who those local partners are, it makes sense to look into the supplier’s partner channel and ask yourself how much CRM experience the local partner has and how many implementations they have been involved with.

3.     Technology
Most businesses get caught up in choosing a cloud-based solution. It’s better not to get caught up in choosing your supplier solely on the type of technology. Just because you need one deployment option today doesn’t mean that you won’t need the other one in the future.  It’s important to choose a supplier that keeps as many doors open as possible.

By better aligning people and business processes, CRM systems can definitely help organizations achieve greater scale and grow efficiently. It is important for your system to grow together with your business, so you can see everything in one place — in a simple, customizable dashboard that can tell you all about a customer’s previous history with you, the status of their orders, any outstanding customer service issues, and more. This way, you can initiate action on-demand anywhere.


How an ecosystem helps: connects entrepreneurs with each other, so they can discuss best implementation strategies, lessons learned and other pitfalls to watch out for.

Meet members in our network that have CRM solutions and platforms:

Teamleader unifies CRM, project planning and invoicing in a simple and intelligent tool helping businesses work smarter

Piesync lets you connect your cloud apps so you can automatically share customer contacts between your marketing automation, CRM, email marketing, invoicing, and e-commerce apps.

Reduce time in scaling up your team

Building out a technology team is as important as it is challenging. The success of a company is often built on a strong foundation combined with a continuous flow of innovation and improvement in terms of products, management but also in terms of structure. The latter is of crucial importance since teamwork is essential in today’s multidisciplinary world.

In every aspect of a successful business, the diverse skills of different team members are necessary for scaling up and reaching success. George Burgess, founder and CEO of revision app Gojimo claims that each company should invest significant time and consideration into recruitment. According to him, a bad hire can be extremely damaging to a small business moving fast. In other words; firms need people around they can trust, members they can rely on with a noticeable amount of skills and knowledge. Employees need to perform at a very high level in order to create, maintain and forecast a firm’s success.

According to Callum Negus-Fancey, chief executive and co-founder of peer-to-peer sales software company StreetTeam, it is also very important to invest in people. He advises paying ‘top of the market’ to build a strong team because ‘the tangible savings you make in paying less’ won’t compensate for the ‘intangible cost in the loss of quality’. It is possible that your team members are perfectly qualified to handle a business as it is, but that doesn’t mean they are capable of handling a business that’s 10 times bigger. Now, it is very clear that the working team’s importance shouldn’t be underestimated, the question arises how to build the perfect team that can scale up your business?

1.     Hire the right people

First, as mentioned above, it is very important to hire the right people. The right person will bring not just a particular skill set or knowledge base, but will be a solid addition to drive forward your company’s vision and values. The attitude and personality of your early team is more critical because start-ups can afford less waste than established businesses. So, in order to stimulate and encourage business growth, the team and its composition is a crucial factor in the growing process.  A good example is the recruitment campaign of Heineken named “The Candidate”. This campaign was a video compilation of secretly filmed job interviews. In which, rather than asking questions about business knowledge, experiences, Heineken decided to assess their applicants’ personalities such as confidence and resourcefulness, wit, attitude…and ability to respond to three given unusual circumstances.

2.     Learning process of your employees

Second, it is necessary and useful to make sure that your employees are learning and keep learning. One way to do so is to encourage them and financially support training that improves your team’s skill level. A seminar or a workshop for instance are good examples of what encouraging support could look like. Investing in their future also means investing in your company. Logically, you want your employees to use and put into practice what they have learned in theory. This implies that you will have to give up some responsibility and give some autonomy to your employees.

3.     Employee commitment

Third, it is important to build employee commitment. Studies show that 88% of fully engaged employees believe that they can positively impact the quality of their organisation’s products and services. Commitment will motivate the team and will automatically embrace innovation and growth. In order to build commitment, employees need to know what is expected from them. Employee commitment can be increased by communicating the firm’s goals in an open way and they should be repeated from time to time. Also, every employee should feel ‘fitting in’ into the team, by involving them into company-wide decisions, employees will feel accepted and useful. 

4.     Quantitative and qualitative growth

Fourth, while your business is scaling up and growing, your team also needs to follow this pattern from a quantitative as well as a qualitative point of view. Although it is necessary to increase the number of employees while expanding on a (inter)national basis, the number of members per team shouldn’t exceed 5-10 people. This is crucial to have optimal exchange and coordination between them. Moreover, within these teams it should be clear who’s in charge of what and who’s leading the team. As mentioned above, the goals should be communicated clearly and there’s no space for chaos.

In short, scaling up a business requires many changes in terms of structure. On the one hand scaling up can be defined as a ‘problem of more’; the challenge is to add more employees, spread new technologies, open more locations and in the meanwhile maintaining the firm’s producing rhythm and main qualities. On the other hand scaling up a firm can be perceived as a ‘problem of less’; there’s a continuous tensity between increasing quantity/ quality and avoiding members, deals and goals that are inappropriate for the firm’s success. Community Update - May 2018

May is a buzzing month the community with a handful of exciting news and key insights on talent.


Congratulations to Award Winners

Collibra took home the ‘Best GDPR Vendor Solution’ award at this year’s RegTech Awards of A-Team Group

iText is the national winner of The ELITE Award for Growth Strategy of the Year

Spott’s founders Michel De Wachter and Jonas De Cooman scored the Top Founder Prize at The Entrepeneur Awards of the Year

Vente-Exclusive won the “Home, Garden & Animal” BeCommerce Public Award

Scaling in Full Swing

Unified Post just scored a €25 million funding round in April. With this new capital injection, they will accelerate their international growth and expand the implementation of their solutions

Teamleader launched their Integration Fund of €1 million to help software developers build or improve new integrations between Teamleader and their applications. Jeroen De Wit, CEO of Teamleader and ambassador of, also launched the book 'Start-up Survival’ together with Robin Geers

Aproplan launched their new e-book on key strategies to stay ahead of your competitors

Key Insights from Putting the Right People in the Right Position

1G3A4765.jpg hosted its second meetup on May 31st focused on ‘Putting the Right People in the Right Positions.’ This is an incredibly timely topic, as scale-ups often need talented people to grow faster and support their expansion!

With 30+ executives from 20 companies, had  the pleasure to welcome the following HR experts: Conny Hooghe (HR Director Materialise), Stijn Van Loo (Managing Partner We Belong) and David Du Pré (Director EMEA Secure Code Warrior, ex-VP EMEA/Sales Showpad). The panel was moderated by Vincent Stevens (Partner at Headlight).


Is it better to hire externally or grow from within?

Materialise CEO Fried Vancraen is a big fan of homegrown management as it has been statistically proven to be the leadership strategy of most successful companies. Yet Conny Hooghe says that “in order to have an excellent succession management plan, you need to invest in the development of candidates in order to put the right leaders in place.” Unfortunately, some leaders are lacking the managerial skills to bring the right structure and processes in place. In this case, it’s better to hire externally as sometimes the candidates next in line may be too immature for the succeeding challenges. 

David Du Pré also warned about the “Peter Principle” where employees get promoted for a position where they don’t have the right capabilities for. Instead of motivating the employees, this only sets them up for failure.  He quickly added that it is important to look at culture fit when you’re hiring externally and to also be mindful about which stage you’re hiring the talent for.

How to tackle performance management?

Stijn Van Loo boldly suggests getting rid of annual performance reviews immediately and plan for recurruing 1-on-1 sessions. David Du Pré added that this is becoming more important, as millennials want constant feedback and ongoing opportunities for learning and growth. This is where HR technologies come in - such as that of our member Intuo’s – as they help you scale such activities.

How to stand out in hiring?

As most scale-ups are aggressively hiring, it’s not a surprise that they’re looking at finding the best talents from the same pool. It is important to make sure your company stands out in hiring. Conny Hooghe emphasizes the importance of a good mission, as it is important to a lot of candidates, more than working in an agile environment and with cool technology.

David Du Pré disagreed by saying that “People are inherently selfish and they only want what is best for their career. The more you highlight the growth opportunities and by empowering them to define their own career path in the company, the more the good candidates are likely to choose for your company.”

Other practical tips from our panel members:

  • To set people up for success: Create trust within the team, clearly state what the team’s objectives are and make sure that expectations are set & understood right from the start.
  • Make sure to create a good candidate experience, as it is the key to getting good people to work with you. How do you do this? By sharing feedback to the candidate, communicating the process upfront and doing things fast.

Our next meetup will be at SuperNova on September 27 in Antwerp.
Would you like to join as a scale-up executive? Become a member of


We'd love to know more about your achievements and news, so we can share it with our growing community.

Keep the bus going: putting the right people in the right position

Scaling up your business also means putting the right people in the right positions at the right time. It takes a strong team with different talents to translate vision into action and make the business expansion a success. Management succession is a top concern for scale-up executives, as they know that placing the right people in key positions can be crucial for a company.

People often compare the placement challenge with driving a bus. Think about it like this: The CEO of the company is the bus driver and the company is your bus. If you want to keep it going, you will have to decide where you’re going, how you’re getting there and who you will take with you.

Leaders who are bringing their company to the next level will start with ‘who’ instead of ‘where’. You will first need to take the right people on the bus, drop off the wrong people in the next stop and then fill the seats with the right persons. When you are facing a problem or opportunity, think first of ‘who can be the right person to take responsibility for this’ instead of ‘what should we do’.

Here are some lessons learned from entrepreneurs on placing the right people in the right positions:

1.     When scaling up, rethink your original team
The skills you need to start the business are not the skills you need to scale a business. Simply put, when your company is growing, it is important to review your current team and see whether they possess the right skills to grow the business. This does not necessarily mean you will fire them, but it means you need to rethink their skills and place them in other positions where they can be great.

2.     Hire people who are better than you
Get people on board who take full ownership of their roles and are focused on the company’s success. Choose talent that is complementing your skills or the skills of the team they will be working with.
Patrick Drake, co-founder of service HelloFresh says: “You’ve got to have the confidence to hire people who are as good, or better, than you. Some will hire below them to avoid being shown up or usurped – but doing that will be the death of your company.”

3.     Highlight your company culture when getting new hires
Finding employees who embody the company’s values is crucial in cultivating the company culture. Many still think that previous work experience and capabilities are all that matter when you’re hiring new employees, but culture fit is a very important factor. Employees who do not fit with the company culture, tend to exert less effort and can even demotivate the entire project team.
When the organizational fit is strong, you will have employees who motivate their co-workers, people who are more likely to stick around and some great brand ambassadors.
Your customers will also notice this and remember: happy employees make happy customers.

4.     Invest in the continuous learning experience
Employees cannot excel if their positions do not suit them. No matter how talented they are, if they cannot leverage their personal skills and attributions, they will never meet your company’s targets.
Still, even if the right persons have been hired, it is important to recognize that skills need to change over time as well. Employees who aren’t stimulated to continually learn more may feel that the right role has become the wrong fit.
Especially for millennials, the “ability to learn and progress” is very important to help them feel fulfilled. Manpower Group mentioned in their ‘Millennial careers: 2020 vision’ paper that 4 out of 5 individuals look at the opportunity to learn new skills when considering a new job opportunity. Glassdoor also revealed that 42% of their millennial respondents indicated that they would most likely leave a company if they are not learning fast enough. This is especially relevant to consider in a scale-up, as likely most of your employees will come from this age group.


How can an ecosystem help

A dynamic talent marketplace can not only help in the hiring process, but it can also be used to identify the internal talents of a company and see if there’s a real fit between the persons and the positions.

Together with B-Hive, is using TalentBuzz: a digital talent marketplace that uses state-of-the-art AI technology for cross-language competence analysis and skill-to-job matchmaking. It combines hard skill matching with soft skill tests (e-assessments, digital skills, personality skills and a fit for the future test) to easily assess whether a candidate or employee fits the position. TalentBuzz will be used at SuperNova to connect high potentials with the exhibiting tech companies. 

Another thing that can help in the talent challenge is getting useful insights and tips from experts in the field. is hosting its second meetup on May 31st and welcomes the following panel members to share their thoughts on talent:

The panel is moderated by Vincent Stevens, Partner at Headlight

Our meetup on talent is a members’ only event. Want to join? Become a member here

SuperNova: Get a glimpse of what you can expect

In case you missed the noise about SuperNova, here’s a time-squeezing summary of what to expect:


From Artificial Intelligence to 3D printing, we are excited to welcome a solid line-up of thought leaders on stage with a broad range of expertise



exhibitors - all.png

The SuperNova Tech Fair aims to showcase more than 60 game-changing Belgian companies that are at the forefront of disrupting traditional industries - ranging from large industry leaders such as Barco (with its expertise in advanced visualization and sound solutions) and imec (world-class leader in nanoelectronics) to disruptive Belgian newcomers such as Teamleader, Robovision, and Showpad.


Do you also want to showcase your solution in one of our nine hot tech clusters?
Get in touch with us to become an exhibitor



We’re overwhelmed by the support of a wide range of partners that joined forces with SuperNova

partners - all.png

What else can you expect at SuperNova?

 SuperNova will be hosted at several locations at Het Eilandje in Antwerp on September 27-30. The SuperNova Professional Summit will take place on 27-28th of September (ticket is required) and the Public SuperNova Festival will take place on 29-30th of September.

Discover the three other tracks:

  • Investor Pitching: Meet 55 high-growth companies who are looking for series B/C round during the pitching track
  • TalentBuzz: Score your next job at SuperNova through TalentBuzz, the dynamic talent matchmaking marketplace, powered by B-Hive. CV submissions will start soon.
  • Expedition: Discover the ‘life of tomorrow’ in various themes ranging from work, food, mobility, health and retail.

Role of and FlandersDC are combining forces as co-organizers of SuperNova to bring the biggest tech festival to Belgium. With a strong conference line-up already in place, we’re working hard to confirm the 50 European scale-ups that will pitch at the Investor Pitching and to bring the most innovative scale-ups and exhibitors to Belgium.

We’re embracing to meet you at SuperNova. Buy your tickets here


Time reduction series: Going International

Companies that are looking to scale can either grow their market share in their home country or go international to open up new revenue sources. Regardless of the geographical size of your home market, international expansion is a crucial step for companies to take their firms to the next level.  But what is the best way to make the big jump to foreign markets and conquer them? In this third part of our time reduction series, we discuss “going international” and tackle the following questions: what are the critical things to watch out for and how can being part of an ecosystem help you out?

Going international as a challenge

When exploring a foreign market, one often sees the following pattern unfold: a scale-up rents out a foreign office and sends some of their brightest and trusted employees over on a short-term basis. These “pioneers” are responsible for assembling a team of talented local people to conquer the new market. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out this way, nor is it the most efficient process. The decision to ‘build’ an own office may not always be the best idea, as a lot of cash will be burned before the new office can attract customers and operate at break-even. The Harvard Business Review reported in 2015 that companies expanding their business abroad, had on average ROA (Return of Assets) of minimum 1%, five years after their initial move.

Engaging the first clients might take months, purely because of a lack of local networks and a well-positioned brand. Moreover, as the pioneers are likely unfamiliar with the local culture, having to optimize the newly assembled local team and having to define the perfect market approach - which will need a lot of adjustments - leads to a significant competitive disadvantage versus their competitors, who are already active in the market.

While local pioneering might seem logical to some extent, does your company have the strong management capabilities and deep pockets to guarantee overseas success using trial and error to position your company in the market? It will inevitably be a time- and cash-consuming process with an unclear outcome, and anyone operating under tight budgets should be wary.

A closer look into the challenge

According to the Scaleup Institute, UK scale-ups that expand internationally have to overcome two main challenges:

25% reported that finding the right talent is an essential challenge to overcome to generate foreign revenues successfully, while 24% state that access to customers and business partners is an equally important barrier to overcome.

As these elements are fundamental/essential to grow a business abroad, companies might want to explore other alternatives versus building a new company from scratch and losing time.

One interesting alternative to expand your business abroad is to take over a firm that is already active in the target country. Ideally, it should be relatively small, so acquisition is feasible. Other criteria to look at include: an established client portfolio and a good brand reputation in relevant business circles and the market in general. This way, you can use the target’s proven foundations/fundamentals for further growth, by adding your knowledge, funding or other unique selling propositions. Another quick win might be to acquire a company with a product or service range, complementary to your own so you can not only accelerate your go-to-market in the new country, but also sell the acquired products or services in your current market.

Next to these market advantages, an acquisition avoids the difficult route of finding and integrating the right talent, which remains to be a major pitfall for most companies. The cross-fertilization between local workers (that provide key insights into the new culture and market) and expats from your own company (that provide the best understanding of your own company, products and DNA)  might prove to be the ideal blend for success.  While this might seem an attractive route, finding the right target(s) will be the first hurdle to undertake.

The second obstacle for most scale-ups is cash. Some companies simply just do not have access to ample debt financing to fund strategic acquisitions. One solution is to pay for the target company with your company’s shares. This will create an incentive for the owners of the acquired firm to help create value for the consolidated group. A well-balanced evaluation will have to be made considering the added value of the new owners to your company, since such a deal will dilute your own stake. Should this not be desirable, other ways of strategic cooperation like joint ventures may offer the right balance to move ahead.

In any case, a buy-strategy (as an alternative to a build-strategy) will require sound planning and execution - including target identification, negotiation and due diligence - but will enable your company to grow faster and more successful, by reducing the time of go-to-market abroad by six to twelve months. In the global game of scale-ups, home advantage may be essential, but so is time-to-market.

Tapping into the ecosystem

Thinking of your international expansion strategy? An ecosystem like can not only help connect you with other entrepreneurs who have successfully tackled this challenge, it can also help connect you with VCs ready to fund your growth.

Discover our services for scale-ups Community Update - April 2018

As one of our goals for is to build and grow a vibrant ecosystem, we’d like to share with you the latest news in our community. We're planning on doing this monthly - so don't hesitate to share with us your news, updates and achievements!


Member Update

Our members are growing their business and scaling up.

Our Dutch member acquired EventsIT (specialist in sports tickets) and is strengthening their position in the sports industry

Aproplan partners up with Besix Netherlands as its construction project management software platform and provider for all projects to guarantee safety and product quality processes

Trendminer teams up with Capula. Together they can deliver more innovative solutions in the energy, water and chemicals industries where customers can use their sensors generated production data to easily uncover efficiency improvements to enhance overall profitability

imec celebrated their 100M after work party, meaning: All imec.istart businesses combined have raised the magic ‘100 million euro’ in funding.

We are proud of the very own scale-ups in our network for contributing to this awesome success: DatacampOntoforce and Piesync

Partner Update


We’re excited to have our partners on board the network who share our passion for accelerating the growth of scale-ups!

They will will play an active role in SuperNova by sharing their expertise, their network and showcasing their solutions.

VC Update

Access to funding is the first step in squeezing time when scaling up.
In line with this, we are organizing the SuperNova Investor Pitching giving 100+ global VCs and investors the opportunity to boost their deal flow with scale-ups that are ready for their next round of funding.

Aside from our selecting VCs, we are proud to have the full support of the following investors for SuperNova:


Calling all scale-ups. Are you interested in showcasing your company & vision at the SuperNova Investor Pitching track?
Apply for the pre-selections now!

Community Meetup


Once companies scale and expand, the need to attract and keep the right talent becomes increasingly more important.

Join us for our next meetup on May 31 focusing on “How to Put the Right People in the Right Position.”


We have invited a handful of experts to share their insights & lessons learned on talent:

 -      Conny Hooghe – HR Director Materialise
-       Karine Vandenberghe – HR Director De Persgroep
-       David Du Pré – Director EMEA Secure Code Warrior and Ex-VP EMEA/Sales Showpad
-       Vincent Stevens – Partner Headlight

Not a member and would like to join our meetups? Join our community now


We'd love to know more about your achievements and news, so we can share it with our growing community. Community Update - March 2018

As one of our goals for is to build and grow a vibrant ecosystem, we’d like to share with you the latest news in our community. We're planning on doing this monthly - so don't hesitate to share with us your news, updates and achievements!


Member Update

Our scale-up community is growing – now with 43 members! - Member Map - March 2018.png

The three most active domains in our community are: FinTech (30%), DataTech (23%) and MarTech (19%).

39 of our member companies focus on a B2B market.

40% of our members have an employee headcount above 50.

We are curious to see how these numbers will transform as you realize your growth & expand our community!


Big welcome to MCS - a technology firm focused on integrated software solutions in real estate, facility and workplace management for large private or public organizations.

VC Update

Our VC network is expanding. We are proud to have the support of the following VCs who are attending SuperNova and co-curating the final selection of the 55 European pitching scale-ups:

Calling all scale-ups. Are you interested in showcasing your company & vision at the SuperNova Investor Pitching track?
Apply for the pre-selections now!

Community Meetup

Left to right: Matthias Vandepitte (Fortino), Bart Luyten (Smartfin Capital) and Frank Maene (Volta Ventures)

Left to right: Matthias Vandepitte (Fortino), Bart Luyten (Smartfin Capital) and Frank Maene (Volta Ventures)

On Tuesday March 27th, organized its first meetup of the year in the Ampla House in Ghent.

The panel discussion focused on “The Perfect Pitch for Series A and B Funding” and three of our VC partners enlightened the crowd with fresh & useful insights on how to score capital financing.

Here are our most important lessons learned:

When a company is ready to start the fundraising process, take time reduction into account. Matthias Vandepitte says, “Don’t waste your time on having too many meetings and attending a lot of conferences. You need to be focused and only go out when your data is ready”

VCs are only spending time on companies that they are truly interested in. It is important for a company looking for funding to have a good understanding of the industry, as well as strong knowledge of hard facts and KPIs.

Financials matter. You better make sure that as a CEO that you know your overall statistics (like ARR and converging ratios) and that your cap table is clean - meaning you don’t give away your shares to too many persons!

Investors also look at the team. Bart Luyten said, “I’m allergic to companies who do not treat their early investors right”.  Frank Maene extends the importance of a strong team even further: “When you invest in a company, you invest in the team so you need to be sure about everyone”.

Check out the pictures of this meetup here


Want to know more about how you put the right people in the right place? Join our next meetup (for members only) on May 31st.  
Want to be part of our future meetups? Join our community now



We'd love to know more about your achievements and news, so we can share it with our growing community.

SuperNova: the conference where tomorrow is unstoppable and FlandersDC are joining forces to ambitiously organize the biggest tech event of the year in Belgium: SuperNova. We are bringing together the most promising European tech scale-ups, game-changers of the tech industry, and thought leaders in this one-of-a-kind event held in Antwerp.

The conference will take place from September 27 to 30 in the Eilandje area of Antwerp where professionals can discover inspiring speakers, fellow entrepreneurs, the newest technologies and potential talent to grow their businesses. During the weekend, the festival will be free and open to everyone.

For all entrepreneurs, investors and tech enthusiasts, there are five tracks at SuperNova that you can explore:

  • Conference
    Get insights on the technologies of tomorrow and business concepts from thought leaders
  • Investor Pitching
    Listen to the pitches of 55 most promising European scale-ups (Open for investors only)
  • Tech Fair
    Discover tomorrow’s tech solutions
  • Expedition
    Get a taste of the life of tomorrow with our creative and interactive installations
  • Talent Matcher
    Meet your future employer/employee through a talent matchmaking platform (Together with B-Hive)

The role of

As a co-organizer of SuperNova, we’re shaping this event with the time squeezing aspect in mind.

Reducing time is the essence of entrepreneurship. SuperNova squeezes time for both scale-ups and VCs by connecting them for four days. As a result, we at help accelerate the growth of their company or portfolio. – Founder Jürgen Ingels


Apart from working towards the overall success of this big event, we’re also fully in charge of the Investor Pitching Track where we bring the 55 most promising European tech scale-ups together with +150 deep pocket VCs.  The following curating VCs have already confirmed in attending SuperNova: Columbia Lake Partners, Fortino Capital, HPE Growth Capital, ID Invest Partners, Prime Ventures, Runa Capital, Smartfin Capital and Volta Ventures.

We are also selecting the 55 SuperNova pitching scale-ups based on a proven growth criteria. Qualified scale-ups can easily schedule private 1-on-1 meetings with deep pocket VCs and potentially score their next funding round. Interested in pitching? 


Want to be part of this revolution? Get your ticket now!




A Closer Look at the Belgian VC Landscape


In 2017, venture capital investment has reached record highs with a total investment of $84.2B in the US and EUR 19.2B in Europe. Clearly, there was no shortage of funding in 2017 and venture capital investment worldwide is soaring.

Looking at Belgium, VC investment grew from €244M to €288M in 2016-2017. Yet, while VC funding in Belgium is growing, the numbers compared to neighboring countries are in a different league altogether. One can easily argue that this is due to the size of the country, as Belgium is one of the smallest countries in Europe. Yet, the per capita numbers show a more fundamental difference. Belgian VC funds invested a lower per capita amount than all of its neighbors, except Luxembourg. This indicates that there is a lot of room for growth when it comes to Belgian venture capital funds and the broader VC ecosystem.


The smaller size of Belgian VC investments certainly is not caused by a lack of quality companies. In recent years, Belgium has been home to a substantial amount of successful tech scale-ups such as Collibra and Showpad, to name a few.

  • At the end of 2017, Collibra raised $58M in a series D round investment led by some of Silicon Valley’s most influential investment funds, such as Iconiq Capital (the fund that handles part of Mark Zuckerberg’s money) and Battery Ventures. To date, Collibra has raised over $130M.
  •  Showpad, which was recently chosen as one of Microsoft’s new software partners, raised $25M of series C funding from Insight Venture Capital at the beginning of 2018. It had previously raised more than $50M in 2016.

In short, Belgian scale-ups are on the rise, but we can also observe another trend: the marriage between Belgian scale-ups and Belgian VC funds is limited to earlier rounds. For later investment rounds, when scale-ups reach a certain size and bigger investments are needed, firms go to the UK or the US for additional growth funding.

What is the reason behind this phenomenon and how can we manage to anchor our scale-ups in Belgium? There are three prominent reasons why this is the case:

Key Benelux VC Funds.png

First of all, Belgium doesn’t have any big venture capital funds. As the Belgian Minister of Finance Johan Van Overtveldt recently stated, there is enough capital, but it is fragmented over a large number of different funds. As Belgian funds are smaller, investing a substantial amount of money in a single investment round is riskier, and this is why Belgian funds are mostly absent in later investment rounds of €15M-€50M. This causes Belgian scale-ups to look for funding in other countries, mostly the US. An important trend in this regard is that the number of individual rounds in Europe and Belgium is falling, while investment amount per round is increasing.

A second reason for this phenomenon is the fact that Belgium is a small home market. In order to truly grow to the next level, international expansion, especially in the US, is critical. When the activities of Belgian companies in the US grow and they have genuine star potential, naturally they will attract the attention of bigger American VCs. Another advantage that comes with the capital raised from American funds is that when growing in the US, the name recognition of a big American VC fund and its successful portfolio companies might give the company an extra push. The companies in the fund’s portfolio also often serve as a valuable network. Also, companies typically need growth capital in their early stages, when they have a scale of about 50 employees. This of course makes those companies more flexible to move to the country from where they get their funding. This has a big impact on Belgian employment because not only are the jobs at the company itself lost, the loss of companies’ headquarters also has an impact on the market of service providing companies.

A third reason for the loss of Belgian companies is the fact that Belgium lacks second generation entrepreneurs, that have successfully founded and sold their companies. While there are a few, such as Marc Coucke, Jurgen Ingels, Bart Verhaeghe and others, the presence of a substantial core of second generation entrepreneurs is vital for the creation of a true scale-up ecosystem.

Belgium thus faces the important task of keeping promising scale-ups in their local home base, while providing them with enough capital in later rounds to grow and expand internationally. In this respect, there have been important efforts made by the Belgian government, which has revealed plans to create a ‘fund of funds’. This fund of about €400M will be used to strengthen existing VC funds, and will give them the additional firepower to support scale-ups in bigger investment rounds. Further efforts have been made by some of Belgium’s well-known tech ambassadors, as Jurgen Ingels and Duco Sickinghe both set up investment funds that focus specifically on later investment rounds (SmartFin Capital and Fortino Capital respectively).

Scale-ups do not only need capital to grow, they also need a network to boost their growth process and to squeeze time. is a newly set-up platform that brings together scale-ups, investors and industry experts. With efforts from the government and private initiatives, like, it looks like the Belgian investment world is turning the tide. It’s the perfect time for Belgian scale-ups to grab these new opportunities and, who knows, maybe Belgium will have its first ‘unicorn’ soon?

After its official launch in January, is organizing the first of a series of meetups: The Perfect Pitch for Series A and B Funding on Tuesday, March 27. In this first meetup, some of our selecting VC partners (Fortino Capital, Smartfin Capital and Volta Ventures) will share their insights on what they’re looking for in the perfect pitch. Further down the line in September 2018, SuperNova will put the spotlight on 55 selected European scale-ups, giving them an opportunity to pitch in front of international investors. This scale-up conference will truly put Belgium on the VC map, and will make sure it gets rid of its reputation as a no-fly zone.

SOURCES: Dealroom, Pitchbook, De Tijd, Trends, Datanews

Author: Philippe Olivier Community Update - February 2018

As one of our goals at is to build and grow a vibrant community, we’d like to share with you the latest news in our community. We're planning on doing this monthly - so don't hesitate to share with us your news, updates and achievements! 


Member Update

Welcome to the newest scale-ups on board

Beeple is a web-based employee scheduling platform suitable for businesses of almost any size or vertical, including HR & employment, catering, events and festivals, guides, cleaning, aviation, sport competitions, security, car parks and call centers.

Ontoforce's mission is to effortlessly extract “information” from public, third party and private big data and present them in a way they can be easily interpreted and used to support smart decisions. Because more data means more insights, more innovation and, ultimately, more patients being helped. Congratulations for closing a round of 4.3 Million!

VAVATO is a high-end, online auction house specializing in industrial goods, overstock and insolvency goods.

Yuki's mission is to make the cooperation between entrepreneur and accountant stronger via an online accounting platform.

VC Update believes in easy access to funding as a critical factor for continued growth.


As part of SuperNova, we aim to organize the biggest scale-up event in Europe. This two-day investor track gives VCs the opportunity to meet 55 promising tech scale-ups from all over Europe. 

On the 23th of February, we selected the first 15 out of 55 scale-ups that will take the stage at SuperNova. For the Benelux selection, we counted on Volta Ventures, Fortino Capital, Prime Ventures & SmartFin Capital to nominate the best 15 scale-ups in the region.

Community Meetup

Open only for executives.

Do not forget to subscribe for our first Meetup and get to know all about “The Perfect Pitch for Series A and B Funding.“

We invited Jurgen Ingels, Founding Partner at SmartFin Capital; Frank Maene, Managing Partner at Volta Ventures & Matthias Vandepitte, Partner at Fortino.  Pick the noses of our panel and get to know all about their pitch secrets. 

Not yet a member of Join our community now


We'd love to know more about your achievements and news, so we can share it with our growing community.

Time reduction series: Raising Capital

Most people think that scale-ups require less funding than startups to grow. In reality, having consistent access to funding is still an important factor for sustainable growth. By having adequate access to growth financing, a company is more equipped to scale internationally and attract high-quality talent. This second blog on time reduction is focused on how to get the necessary funding to bring your company to the next level.

Funding as a challenge

Many startups and scale-ups ask when the best time is to go fundraising. Eugene Kleiner, a top-tier VC from Silicon Valley, said it best: “The time to eat the hors d’oeuvres is when they’re being passed around.” Simply put: The best time to go fundraising is when you do not need the money at all.

Each round is meant to address a specific challenge that scale-ups need to conquer, in order to convince the investor(s) to provide capital:

·       Series A: What vision do I want to sell? Is my product/service market addressable?

·       Series B: What results have I achieved? How does my growth path look like?

·       Series C: How can I accelerate my growth path from the series B round? How can I bring my company across the ocean?

As the second round really focuses on scaling, many consider this the hardest round to raise. Companies at this stage are already marked by their proven value to the market, therefore the pressure is higher than ever to deliver real proof points. Not only are investors expecting revenues, they are also looking for concrete plans on how the company is planning to reach its milestones. When you are going for a Series B funding, it helps to come with solid references and a strong understanding of the competitive landscape to prove that you have a viable, scalable product. It is also important to demonstrate your business model, so the VC can see how the capital boost can lead to profitable growth.

A closer look into the challenge

Getting to investors is not always easy, especially if you’re aiming for the big ones that have a larger financial backing.

In our portfolio alone, our members raised approximately €250M in total, €85M of which they had raised only in 2017. The top three companies who got the largest funding are: Collibra (+€70M), NGData (+€45M) and Sparkcentral (+€37M), and they account for 62% of the total raised capital.  Additionally, Index Ventures – one of our VC partners – has invested the most in our members with an estimation of €25M.

We also spoke with Luc Burgelman, CEO of NGData, who just closed his series C-round of €16 M in December 2017 with Holland Private Equity (HPE). Sometimes people think that raising a big round is much harder than raising a small amount. But actually, the opposite is true. When raising a bigger amount, a company mostly has accomplished several milestones already. At that point, there is a track record and a more predictable future. That allows funds to make a better risk assessment of the opportunity and thus, makes it easier to make an investment decision for a larger ticket”.

Nevertheless, Luc states that no funding round is easy and every round has its own challenges.

One of his best time-reducing tip for scale-ups is to always keep an ongoing relationship with several investment companies outside your current investor base. If you are then at that point to raise money again, you can really speed up the process with your network. 

Tapping into the ecosystem for funding

An ecosystem that brings together VCs and scale-ups will definitely reduce time in the funding process, as there are not only plenty of opportunities to network with many VC’s at once, you also get the chance to learn about different funding types in our master classes and meetups.

The first Meetup will take place on March 27th where we’ll focus on the perfect pitch for Series A and B funding. In the panel, three of our selecting VCs (Fortino, Smartfin Capital and Volta Ventures) will discuss the key points that can make or break your pitch. will also help speed up the funding process by organizing the first edition of SuperNova from September 27th-30th. This annual event will bring together European scale-ups and global VCs to explore mutual growth opportunities. Our VC partners will pre-select 50 hidden gems in Europe that will get the chance to pitch to a global network of VCs from Asia, Europe and United States. A pre-selections round in the Benelux will be held early 2018, where our VC partners in the region will get to select the 15 best scale-ups who will be present in the conference. There will also be a matchmaking tool that will enable scale-ups and VC connect directly at the conference, further enhancing the opportunities to explore business together.

Are you a member and looking to participate in our first meetup? Officially Launches


Together with its growing community of scale-ups, VCs and partners, is officially launched and is poised to become the top-of-mind time squeezer for scale-ups in Europe. Apart from bringing the community together for a toast to a successful 2018, announces its plans for the upcoming year at its Official Kick-Off event held with B-Hive on January 15.

Headquartered in Belgium, is a new platform that brings together scale-ups, investors and experts to become a European scale-up ecosystem that boosts growth for all. On top of being able to leverage big investments, the major advantage of a well-established ecosystem is having quick access to second-generation entrepreneurs who have proven experience in scaling and are able to shorten a growing company’s learning curve. Therefore, one cannot stress enough the importance of time reduction, as entrepreneurs and companies are more successful if they are capable to reduce or squeeze time.

Building a service structure that helps scale-ups in reducing time is without doubt a very important factor for a performant scale-up ecosystem. Hence, being a part of a multifunctional network that promotes continuous education and access to know-how and human capital are essential elements for this time reduction challenge. These needs only become bigger when companies are expanding and planning on entering new markets.
— Founder Jurgen Ingels

In its first year, will focus its efforts on SuperNova. Together with Flanders DC, we are organizing the biggest tech summit in Belgium on September 27-30 in Antwerp, where 55 selected European scale-ups will pitch their companies to international investors. These hidden gems will be selected by eight VC partners such as SmartFinCapital, Volta, Fortino, Runa Capital, idinvest, Prime Ventures, Columbia Lake Partners and Summit Partners. Apart from unlocking new funding opportunities for European scale-ups, SuperNova will be showcasing the best high-technology companies in its demo floor.

To support the growth needs of our scale-ups, we are also offering two programs. For Squeezer program, we are offering three modules of 2x2 days to help mature scale-ups reduce time, with topics including: People, Funding and Market Access. With ‘BEyond’, a program initiated by the Pulse Foundation, we offer an 18-month accelerator program to help scale-ups become world leaders in their field. Next to the programs, there will also be three meet-ups in 2018 with the following topics:

  • The Perfect Pitch for Series A and B Funding
  • Team Development, Putting the Right People in the Right Positions
  • How to Make Your Brand Internationally Attractive


Interested in joining our global scale-up network?

Time reduction series: Law on talent

Companies that apply the law of time reduction are able to accelerate the business plan and grow faster. The question is – how do you apply the law into your day-to-day business operations?

In this blog series, we dive into the law of time reduction applied to the significant challenges scale-ups face in hiring talent, raising capital and global expansion.

Talent as a challenge

According to the European Commission, 20% of all EU companies were employing ICT specialists in 2016. However, 41% of the companies state that they had a hard time finding the right person for their vacancies. As the European tech workforce is growing three times faster than the overall EU employment, the hunt for talent is becoming a real challenge.

Looking into the UK scale-up scene, 93% of the scale-ups report that their main roadblock for continued growth is access to talent. However, there are some challenges to face: 48% do not know where to find good talent and 38% do not have the right connections to universities. If they do find the right hire, the key required skills are critical thinking and a service-oriented mindset. Nevertheless, the UK still is the top talent magnet for tech, as they attracted 21,5% of all the international migrants.

In a recent State of European Tech Report by VC fund Atomico, companies have the most difficulties recruiting in the following categories: Software engineering (46%), Sales/Business development (14%) and Data science (9%).

State of European Tech Report

A closer look into the challenge

If you look closely into our community, there are over 250 open positions just only on our 30 member companies. This loosely translates to 8 job openings for every one company, with majority of the job openings in the field of development (37%) and sales (24%), followed by customer service (9%). This confirms the ‘cry for talent’ in our community and strengthens the choice that talent is one of the focuses of our service offerings.  

Zhong Yuan Xu, one of our ambassadors, confirms that most scale-ups are looking for similar profiles and are therefore fishing in the same talent pool. Creativity during the hiring process and original perks are the way forward to attract the best of the best.

Attracting (and keeping) millennials in general has become a real challenge for companies, as the new generation of the workforce seeks more than just a high-paying job. Manpower Group’s global research found that millennials value a strong career path with 93% of the respondents stating that lifelong learning matters to them the most . This means that scale-ups should constantly provide growth opportunities for their employees in the form of exciting projects, dynamic roles and international assignments.

Tapping into the ecosystem for potential talent

A well-established ecosystem has an important role to play in reducing time on scouting talent by linking the different stakeholders with each other to match the right profile with the right job.

Committed to helping scale-ups reduce time, will facilitate the matchmaking process through:

-        A job fair at our Conference 2018
-        Scale-up masterclasses to improve the skill set of current scale-up managers
-         Interactive job board that will automatically do the matchmaking between CVs and jobs
-        Multiple networking opportunities between promising talent and employers

Discover our full list of services: