Startup ecosystem in Spain

Madrid and Barcelona are the most established startup hubs in Spain — Madrid is in close proximity to political power and Barcelona’s “Silicon Valley Districte de la innovació”, is home to a growing number of tech companies. However there are other ones in Valencia, Andalucia and Basque Country that also have a big impact in the Spanish tech ecosystem.

Also, Spain is known for the good quality of life and tech ecosystem that allows it to innovate and launch new projects that scale globally.

In this article we would like to cover the main players of the startup ecosystem in Spain, focusing on incubators, accelerators and venture builders.

Main incubators in Spain

IE Business School’s Venture Labs (Madrid): IE’s startup incubator, which is designed for students and alumni to explore market opportunities, incubate ideas and accelerate business.

Programa Explorer (Madrid): The entrepreneurship program of Banco Santander that helps land projects driving its market launch. The program offers support, training, advice, cash prizes and trips to Silicon Valley.

Cloud Incubator (Murcia): Aims to promote education in entrepreneurship and innovation in the ICT sector throughout Europe.

Tetuan Valley (Madrid): The first non-profit pre-accelerator program in Europe. It helps and trains entrepreneurs, companies and educational institutions to implement innovative projects. It offers a network of mentors and advisors from all disciplines ready to help early stage projects.

Main accelerators in Spain

Conector (Barcelona): An accelerator dedicated to matching entrepreneurs and mentors. It focuses on startups in the Internet and Mobile sector to participate in the 6-month acceleration process.

Impact Accelerator (Madrid): IMPACT is considered among the world’s best emerging accelerators. IMPACT has accelerated more than 100 startups. IMPACT accelerator, led by ISDI & FundingBox, offers startups a rigorous and delocalized acceleration experience, supported by a combination of equity-free cash and VC funding.

Itnig (Barcelona): A startup builder/accelerator based in Barcelona with the goal of leading hyper-growing businesses and building a respectful and independent ecosystem and economy where companies and people can collaborate, be stronger and grow faster. Itnig offers investment fund, coworking space, podcast and events.

Lanzadera (Valencia): A program launched by the President of supermarket chain Mercadona, Juan Roig. The 9-month business acceleration program offers advice, adapted financing and training for the development of entrepreneurial projects, based on a proven management model. The program is constantly open and the entry months are: January, May and September.

Seedrocket (Barcelona, Madrid): The differential value of SeedRocket lies in the involvement of Business Angels and reference professionals in the sector. It is a network of experienced mentors who engage with young entrepreneurs in a proactive and coordinated way, contributing their time, dedication and knowledge. Likewise, SeedRocket is also made up of a network of investors who are committed to new technology projects, innovative and with high growth potential.

Startupbootcamp (Barcelona): Supports early-stage tech founders to rapidly scale their companies by providing direct access to an international network of the most relevant mentors, partners, and investors in their industry.

StartupLabs (Sevilla): Accelerator that focuses on startups operating in the following verticals in Spain: B2C Digital Content, Digital Marketing and Mobility. They choose start-ups that have the potential to commercialize their products and/or services and also have developed a MVP (minimum viable product) that’s ready to go to market. Instead, it connects startups with potential investors via their Investor Matching process.

Wayra  (Barcelona, Madrid): The startup accelerator of Spanish telecommunications company Telefonica. They are dedicated to promote startups and train them in academies and provide them funding for their projects being a success.

IE Rockets Acceleration (Madrid): Residency program launched by the IE Business School that adapts to the specific needs of each startup. IE ROCKETS PILOTS will help your startup carry out pilots with real users at IE, during a designated time period. Startups that join this program usually have a clear business model and product strategy, in which higher education is a target market.

EDP Starter Acceleration Program (Madrid): Has a goal to identify innovative projects with a broad development potential to speed up their scalability towards the commercial phase. 

Acciona I’mnovation (Barcelona): Extends ACCIONA’s innovative focus towards an open innovation model. Acciona is looking for startups offering technological solutions along ACCIONA’s strategic lines of innovation, which seek to drive projects that can provide solutions to the technological challenges of  business sectors and that, through a pilot funded by ACCIONA, are able to be validated in a real-life setting. 

ASICS Tenkan-Ten (Barcelona): This startup accelerator program is part of the strategy developed by the New Business and Innovation Division of ASICS, whose objective is to promote growth and innovation throughout the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) regions. Barlab Ventures (Barcelona, Madrid): Entrepreneurial platform of Mahou San Miguel. It is a pioneering program at the national level that seeks to promote technological innovation in the entire value chain of Mahou San Miguel.

Bind 4.0 (Bilbao): Startup accelerator in the Basque autonomous region that connects startups with industry leaders in advanced manufacturing, smart energy, health tech and food tech industries.

Demium (Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, Malaga): Another of Spain’s top startup accelerators. Actually, Demium both runs an accelerator and incubator programme.Their accelerator program runs for 10 weeks and offers startups a pre-seed investment of €25,000 from Spain’s VC Think Bigger Capital, which can also go up to €500,000 for successful startups. In addition to pre-seed funding, companies also receive mentoring and assistance from expert mentors and business angels in a number of areas (e.g. Marketing, Growth Hacking, Sales, etc.).

Ufounders empowers and accelerates tech projects from the idea to global expansion thanks to education, advisory and investment.

Ship2B has a mission to boost the Impact Economy, an economic model in which the main purpose for startups, businesses, investors and organizations is not only to maximize profitability, but also to improve their social and environmental impact. Ship2B offers customized acceleration processes, links to large companies, and access to funding.

Top Seeds Lab (Madrid): This accelerator has accelerated dozens of startups and invested in 40 of them through different investment vehicles. It is the only Spanish accelerator belonging to the prestigious Global Accelerator Network (GAN) and has received multiple awards.

Social Nest (Valencia): It supports and accompanies those undertaking initiatives that will have a positive social and environmental impact. They develop acceleration programs for ideas and impact startups that will boost their chances for success.

eWorks Accelerator (Barcelona): Selective program that aims to identify and support high-growth ideas, and enhance the efficient development of entrepreneurial projects. The program runs once a year, leveraging the summer break to push for growth and culminates with a Demo Day with investors.

EGI Booster (Barcelona): Digital Commerce Tech International Accelerator for Startup Seed. Booster’s acceleration program is specially designed for international Retail Tech, Martech, Adtech and Fashion tech startups. Mentoring, Workshops, Perks, and a team who will help you to make the most of the program to succeed and keep growing worldwide.

Venture Capitals & Venture Builders

BStartup  (Barcelona): Program that supports young innovative and technological companies. Banco Sabadell invests each year in 10 companies in initial phases of 100,000 euros per project in exchange for a share in social capital. 

Cemex Ventures (Madrid): It has a global focus in investing and partnering with the most innovative, sustainable, and promising startups to drive the construction industry revolution.

Barcelona Ventures (Barcelona): Its goal is to help startups, those based in Spain and the rest of Europe, to learn from Silicon Valley startups, scale their business globally, and attract investors. The startups that join Barcelona Ventures leverage on their network of mentors, investors, business leaders, and industry insiders. Barcelona Ventures is looking for early-stage and top-class founders attacking large, global markets and solving real problems using technology.

GoHub (Valencia): Invests in deep tech startups that do not set limits to boost their exponential growth. Gohub is committed to disruptive B2B solutions to automate processes, reduce costs, innovate products and promote sustainability in the industry.

Bcombinator (Barcelona): Startup Venture Corporation that builds and invests in startups that have the potential to grow fast and expand globally, with office space only occupied by entrepreneurs.

Antai (Barcelona): Accepts the challenge of launching successful businesses together with the best teams of professionals.

La Salle ( Barcelona): Develops programs to support the idea to the business creation, maturity and growth of startups. A team of experienced entrepreneurs, mentors and managers support founders with the development of their product, services and business models.

Peninsula Corporate Innovation (Barcelona): Establishes relationships with startups and applies lean and agile methodologies to create new business models. It helps startups to accelerate their innovation cycles.

Intelectium (Barcelona): Helps fund technology startups with private investment and loans from Spanish and European public entities.

Finish Tech (Vigo): Unique acceleration program that connects the experience and business opportunities of leading companies in the fishing industry with the most innovative technology of startups and companies around the world.

Nowture (Madrid): Invests and boosts life sciences innovation in a unique and comprehensive way. Nowture works to make the best ideas grow, connecting them with a powerful ecosystem of means, experience and knowledge to turn them into real, efficient and successful projects. Nowture gets involved in each project, joining the team in an active role for the project management and day to day, designing and implementing specific strategies that channel ingenuity, ideas and innovation towards powerful businesses that change our world. 

I hope you found this list useful!

VYou is currently offering FREE annual licenses for Spanish Incubators, Accelerators and Venture Builders to contribute to the Spanish startup ecosystem and recollect feedback from developers and startup stakeholders to keep improving the product and adding new features to the roadmap. 

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