If you’re an entrepreneur looking to start a brand-new business and need start-up capital, then where does someone start to look for funding?
Business loans are only possible if the company has been in business for some time and has a proven track record. Even then it can be hard to secure funding from banks and traditional financial institutions. If you’re an entrepreneur with an idea for a new business and need some start-up capital to get going, then it is very unlikely that the bank will be there to offer you a loan.
It might be possible to get some grants or funds from the Dutch government. However, this can also be a difficult route to go down. However, there are a few different funds available in the Netherlands and it’s worth seeing if your business or idea would qualify. There is an online tool called the Startup Box which you can use to find out if your business or idea will qualify for a grant.
When it comes to individual grants and loans there are a few schemes that might be applicable to new businesses and start-ups in the Netherlands.
Innovation credit – this is focused on the medical sector. In short, if you use (clinical) technology to develop a new product, medicine or device then this scheme may be applicable to you.
Dutch Good Growth Fund (DGGF) – this scheme is open to SME companies in the Netherlands who are looking to invest in an upcoming market or in a developing country.
Financial support for self-employed professionals (Bbz) – The Decree on Assistance to the Self-Employed is available from various municipality in the Netherlands and is for freelancers and the self employed who require some financial support.
Ultimately, as the three above schemes show, they are fairly specific in terms of what sectors they are for and may not be available or useful to everyone. As a Dutch entrepreneur who might not for into the above profile, and therefore doesn’t have access to grants or loans from the back, then other avenues need to be explored. In these cases, most entrepreneurs turn to small business investors also known as angel investors, for help.
For most young businesses that are looking to expand they will need to leverage private investment and small business investors to help grown their business.
Unlike banks and other financial institutions, small business investors are more willing to invest in brand new business, ideas and projects that are still in their infancy. The reason for this is that in return for investment they will take some shares in your business and become part owner. For the small business investor this can be risky (if a new business fails) but also highly rewarding if it takes off and becomes successful.
For the entrepreneur looking to grow their business and have hit a barrier when it comes to financing it, going down the route of partnering with a small business investor can be an attractive option. Not only do these angel investors provide financial support just when you need it, some small business investors will also provide other value. This can come in the form of support, mentorship or even opening doors to other business contacts. This kind of partnership often helps fast track a fledgling business and help it grow quickly.
Entrepreneurs can sign-up to the Netherlands Investment Network to add their business idea to it. Then, investors who are looking for investments in Dutch businesses can connect with you to discuss and ultimately help finance your business. Our investment network is a global enterprise so you will have access to investors from all over the world, looking to invest in exciting project.