Startups wanted for challenges Groningen OPEN

Groningen OPEN kicks off its second edition this week, where six established companies from the northern Netherlands have formulated challenges and are looking for startups with innovative solutions. The goal of the Groningen OPEN initiative is to bring together established companies and startups in the region in a low-key and effective way. Startups can sign up for one of the six challenges at until March 15. Groningen OPEN is organized by Campus Groningen, Founded in Groningen, Founded in Friesland, VentureLab North and Flinc (part of NV NOM). 

Six established companies - Antea Group, Boom uitgevers, Nijestee, Bossers & Cnossen, Intergas and Cosun Beet Company - are open to innovation and collaboration with startups. They have set up challenges and in the coming weeks, together with the organizing partners of Groningen OPEN, they will be looking for startups that can offer a good solution to their problem.  

For example, Cosun Beet Company (formerly Suiker Unie) is looking for a startup that can realize a new application from the sugar beet, such as products for personal care and household products. Antea Group wants to develop a tool that provides insight into the flow of movement in public space. Boom uitgevers would like to get in touch with a startup that can take their online training concept for teachers into the future. Housing corporation Nijestee is curious about new methods for making existing homes more sustainable. Bossers & Cnossen wants to know whether there is a market for Nextcloud and the associated services of Bossers & Cnossen. And Intergas, market leader in the development of high-efficiency central heating boilers, would like to get in touch with a startup that can offer a solution for compact heat storage.  

Three matches thanks to first edition Groningen OPEN

After a successful first edition of Groningen OPEN in late 2020, three established companies from the Northern Netherlands have started collaborating with the startup they were matched with. Cloetta is partnering with LEF, FC Groningen with Rockfeather and Symeres (formerly MercachemSyncom) with Gecco Biotech. Groningen OPEN offers startups the opportunity to connect with established companies and respond to their current issues, develop, test and possibly implement solutions. 

Groningen OPEN connects established companies with startups

When it comes to things like product improvement, market knowledge and acceptance,  
startups can often benefit from the accumulated expertise and experience of bigger companies. And vice versa, to stay competitive, established companies are increasingly dependent on the speed and flexibility of innovative startups. However, both parties often find it difficult to get in touch or to work together.  

The partners of Groningen OPEN - Campus Groningen, Founded in Groningen, Founded in Friesland, VentureLab North and Flinc (part of NV NOM) - use their networks and expertise to connect companies and startups. Groningen OPEN is financially supported by ‘het Groningen Akkoord’ (Groningen Agreement) to boost the innovation climate.  

Matching and pilot projects

Startups can register for one of the six challenges until March 15, 2021. During the (online) event on April 7 it will be announced which startups have a match with the six larger companies. As soon as there is a match, the startup and the company (the challenge owner) will enter into a collaboration of 6 to 12 weeks to come up with a solution. The partners of Groningen OPEN will guide and support this process. The goal is to establish an actual, long-term collaboration after this process.  

More information about Groningen OPEN and the challenges can be found at Established businesses interested in participating in a later edition of Groningen OPEN can contact us at