Illustration: ESA

New ESA Business Incubation Centre to be anchored at DTU

Wednesday 02 Jan 19
by Jesper Spangsmark


Kristian Pedersen
DTU Space
+45 20 11 74 77

The ESA Business Incubation Centre concept

Start-up companies will be admitted in the ESA Business Incubator programme after an application process and will receive a package with technical, financial, and business support, including:

  • 80 hours of technical advice and support from ESA as well as Danish businesses and knowledge institutions

  • EUR 50,000 in financial support for the development of technology-based products and services

  • Access to the world’s largest ecosystem for start-up companies doing space-related work

As part of the ESA BIC, the companies will also get the opportunity to work closely with knowledge institutions and existing companies in Denmark.

There are currently 20 other ESA Business Incubator Centres in Europe.

An ambitious nesting ground for the space industry will provide help, advice, and financial support for Danish growth companies and entrepreneurs.

The Danish Ministry of Higher Education and Science, the Danish Industry Foundation and the European Space Agency are now opening new doors for space entrepreneurs with the establishment of the ESA Business Incubation Centre Denmark.

Anchored at DTU, the Centre is supported and co-financed by Aalborg University (AAU) and Aarhus University (AU) as well as a number of businesses and foundations and will support new start-ups and established businesses that use and develop space technology or satellite data.

“Space is the basis for a global billion-dollar industry, and it is often in the development of satellites and the use of data etc. that we take giant leaps within technologies that are key to our daily lives, our development, and our future. I am thus convinced that the establishment of the ESA Incubation Centre in Denmark will benefit not only the space industry, but also a wide range of Danish high-tech companies”, says Kristian Pedersen, Director of DTU Space.

Will be part of high-tech and entrepreneurial environment
In addition to financial support, the Centre also offers entrepreneurs and companies the technical expertise of the European Space Agency, universities, and GTS institutes as well as businesses. Help for business development, funding applications, and finding business partners is also available. And it will be anchored in an environment that provides the best conditions for growth and development:

“DTU has some of the world’s leading research groups within space technology and the use of satellite data as well as one of the largest and most well-developed ecosystems for entrepreneurship among the technical universities of Europe. With the ESA Business Incubation Centre, we can partner with AAU, AU, and other good partners in Denmark to accelerate the creation of new growth companies that use space technology and satellite data for innovative products that will benefit society,” says DTU President Anders Bjarklev.

350-400 new jobs
ESA Business Incubation Hubs will be established at DTU as well as at Aalborg University and Aarhus University. The ESA Business Incubation Centre’s activities in Denmark will be concentrated at these hubs. And this is also where the first companies to start their incubation programme in January 2020.

Twice a year, new companies will admitted to the programme. A total of 40 new high-tech companies will be admitted to the programme over a five-year period, and the Centre’s budget for the period amounts to EUR 6,8 million (DKK 50 million).

The goal is that these efforts will have resulted in a number of new businesses with a total turnover of EUR 20 million and 350-400 new high-tech jobs by 2025.