Techleap.NL Rise


By 2023, Rise wants to have supported 250 promising scale-ups. The program was designed to caters to companies which: 

  • Significantly need to increase their team.
  • Want to expand their markets and rapidly grow internationally.
  • Need to attract serious growth capital.
  • Want to map their scaling journey. 
  • Aim to be a global force in their industry.
SUPPORT MECHANISM: Rise encourages founders in cohorts of 10-15 participants to learn from each other about the challenges of scaling up a company. 

    Selected companies receive support and feedback from top Dutch entrepreneurs who share their own insights and lessons learned. Program features include

    • Tailor-made sessions: designed for participants to network, get inspired and gather actionable insights around Talent, Capital and Internationalisation via exclusive sessions with scale icons and experts. 
      • Scale icons are iconic entrepreneurs who have scaled their companies to billion-dollar businesses. Rise participants get a chance to spend time with these selected group of entrepreneurs to hear their story and sit at the same table to ask for advice on tough challenges.
    • Connection Day: Rise program leaders curate an audience of top-tier contacts from the investor and corporate world to listen to participants' pitches and enable the right connections in days instead of months.

    There is no cost to the selected scale-ups (except travel/accommodation for trips). does not seek equity.

    IMPLEMENTING AGENCIES: (formerly StartupDelta), a non-profit publicly funded organisation.


    The criteria to participate are strictly for scale-ups. To qualify for the program they must meet the following criteria:

    • Currently raising €10M+ in a funding round, or they are preparing to raise it with their next round (after probably already have been funded €1-5M)
    • Demonstrate an annual turnover in excess of €1 million;
    • Employ more than 10 full-time employees
    • Achieved at least 50% annual growth and a clear understanding of the product/service and the market they serve. 

    An experienced independent selection committee selects the companies based on their overall value proposition, traction, potential to scale and program fit.


    Every quarter Rise will select a new group of between 10 and 15 entrepreneurs, until 2023.

    May 2020: First batch announced. 10 companies were selected from a nationwide pool of applicants. The companies in this first batch were from a wide range of sectors, on average have just over 30 employees and have raised €2 million in capital.

    September 2020: Batch #2 announced (11 high potential tech scaleups). This batch carried theme of “Flattening the climate curve". Almost two thirds of the companies are based outside Amsterdam, 72% were in the Energy & Cleantech sectors, and they have jointly raised funds for a total of €47,81 million.

    January 2021: Rise presented Batch #3 (10 startups). Participants in this batch had an average of 35-40 people employed and 170 per cent revenue growth in 2019.


    The Rise will be evaluated based on its three-pronged mission:

    • To support the emergence and development of world champions in the technology sector;
    • To help the Netherlands become less dependent on technological solutions from other countries; and
    • To create a climate in which two unicorns per year can 'rise' by 2023.

    The insights from the program will also be shared to further improve the tech-ecosystem in the Netherlands and to define bottlenecks and solutions for the growth challenges of scale-ups.


    Participant feedback highlight the benefits of the program's safe environment for peer-to-peer learning:

    • "The other 9 entrepreneurs in the batch were all of a really high calibre and the benefit of that is that we’re all facing the same battles. The openness with which we were able to share challenges and experiences with each other, made the program very valuable and really unique in the Netherlands." - Yves Prevoo from Batch #1, Founder & CEO at Easee
    • "The diversity of participants and experiences was what held the most value in the programme for me. Everyone runs into different things in their own space, but you can dilute them down to the same pure issues." - Merel Boers, Co-founder & CEO at Nico.lab

    • "I really liked the idea of being able to learn through the experiences of others. 90% of the challenges you go through as an entrepreneur are being experienced by your peers as well." - Koen Droste, Founder & CEO at Polarsteps

    • "Being selected acts as a massive validation to both ourselves and our external stakeholders that we are being seen as one of the Netherlands' highest potential scaleups!" - Quinten Selhorst, Founder & CEO at Felyx


    Constantijn van Oranje, Special Envoy,, who expressed at the launch:

    "With Rise we want to create more Dutch technology companies that can measure themselves against the best internationally. We have found the best entrepreneurs in the business willing to help our most promising scale-ups with honest hard and constructive feedback. By learning from each other's experiences and connecting them to the right parties, we create an innovative climate in which the tech leaders of tomorrow can rise above themselves."