Triple-S Forum Event: Financing Friday 

As the last event of the year, we hosted the “Financing Friday: How to finance your bioeconomy innovation” online event on 8 December. With over a hundred registered participants, demand was high and our speakers were able to provide an excellent overview of funding opportunities and personal experiences with financing.


Benno Weißner (ZENIT/NRW.Europa) gave an overview over public funding schemes from regional, to federal and EU funding. He presented several calls as examples, pointing out which important points to keep in mind for the different funding schemes and also how to get support from Zenit or be connected to other partners across Europe.


Claas Heise (NRW.BANK) presented how the NRW.BANK supports innovations all the way from a spin-out idea up to medium sized companies. He walked the audience through a typical journey form first contact to exit in the programme NRW.Venture and shared how the NRW.BANK works together with other funds and Business Angels.


Max Webers (COLIPI) concluded the programme. He gave a first-hand account of COLIPI’s experience from its foundation to the present day. He particularly emphasised staying in the university environment for a long time in order to bring technologies to the necessary TLR. COLIPI had successfully secured the highest ever EXIST grant, but also had to deliver product samples and prove recognition from industry partners.



The final panel discussion focused on ways to improve funding opportunities for innovations in the bioeconomy. All speakers agreed that financing is not an easy task, especially for these innovations. Long development times, high costs and special requirements often mean increased risk. This opinion was also shared among the participants. Although there are suitable funding instruments for most business models, the financing landscape is opaque and bureaucratic. Raising funds can therefore be difficult, especially for start-ups. Overall, the speakers would like to see stronger, more centralised support for the entire bioeconomy sector in order to bring innovative ideas to the market.

We would like to thank our speakers and all participants for the interesting discussions and look forward to the next event.