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Funding Opportunities

You have got the perfect idea for a start-up, but you lack the necessary financial resources? The foundation consulting at the University of Bayreuth will be happy to advise you on possible funding options for your start-up project and will help you with the application.

Funding programs for start-ups at a glance:

EXIST Founder GrantHide

Do you want to start a business? Are you in the middle of the developing process, but you need money to realize your idea? Then you should take a closer look to see if the start-up scholarship is an option that could help you out! (Information at: www.exist.de).

If you take advantage of our consulting services, the advisors will automatically clarify whether a start-up scholarship is an option for your business idea. There are a few prerequisites for this:

  • Your idea must be innovative. This may include innovative technology-oriented projects or innovative knowledge-based services that are premised on scientific findings.
  • The start-up scholarship does not have to be paid back. As large amounts of money are involved, it goes without saying that the scholarship committee expects you and your founding team to work on your project on a full-time basis. To make this possible, your team should consist of persons who have already finished their studies. In exceptional cases, students can also participate. However, this is only possible if the main burden of developing your idea is not on the student.
  • If you or one of your team members are non-German citizens, it must be clarified with the Foreigners' Office whether you and/or your team members are allowed to start a business in Germany.
  • The company must not be officially founded yet.

Which documents are needed for the application?
To apply for the start-up scholarship, you and your team must provide some documents. These include diplomas, curriculum vitae, etc. The core of the application is the preparation of a concept paper in German (maximum 25 pages). Here, the project sponsor specifies the structure. As the concept paper is almost like a business plan, the preparation takes time. But don’t worry, you will be provided start-up consultation right from the beginning!

To ensure that you also receive optimal professional support, you will need a mentor - this is usually a professor at the University of Bayreuth. To find a mentor, it is your responsibility to reach out to a professor of your choice and to present him/her your business idea. In case of a positive evaluation by the professor, your team will be established as a project at the respective research group.

IMPORTANT: An application for a start-up scholarship can be submitted at any time of the year, there are no due dates. As soon as you and your team have all the necessary documents together, your application for the scholarship will be submitted by the University of Bayreuth.

What happens next?
Once the sponsor has received your application, the evaluation process takes about two months. If your project is evaluated positively, you and your team will receive financial support for 12 months beginning on the official start date of your project amounting to:

  • € 3,000 /month for doctoral candidates
  • € 2,500 /month for graduates
  • € 1,000 /month for students
  • € 2,000 /month for technical employees
  • €    150 /month child supplement for each dependent child

In addition, you get € 30,000 for material and equipment. Coaching for a maximum of € 5,000 is also financed. Whether you need anything else to work on your project like an office, a laboratory, etc. depends on your innovative business idea and will be clarified during the consultation.

The start-up scholarship is not only a great opportunity to get your business started but has a significant advantage compared to other forms of financial support or loans: You and your team have no debts – meaning you won’t have to pay anything back, no matter at what point you and your team start your business during the funding period!



A new startup funding program has been launched in Bavaria: The aim of the "Start?Zuschuss!" funding is to support technology-oriented start-ups in the start-up phase and to help ensure that these start-ups can establish themselves in the market.

Start-ups in the field of digitization with a particularly future-proof, innovative business model can apply for funding. The company may have been founded no more than two years ago. Funding is available for expenses such as rent and personnel, market launch of the product, research and development. A maximum of 50 percent of these expenses are funded for a maximum period of one year with up to 3,000 euros per month.

First the competition, then the funding

Those wishing to apply for funding must first compete in a competition. A jury selects the 20 most promising business models. There are two application phases per year, with 10 companies receiving funding in each phase. The application deadlines are generally between mid-May and mid-July and between mid-November and mid-January. Funding then begins either on April 1 or October 1.

EXIST-Research TransferHide

EXIST Research Transfer supplements the broadly effective EXIST start-up grant of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology with a special excellence-oriented measure for high-tech start-ups. Funding is provided for teams from universities (maximum of 4 people, including one founding member with a business degree) in two funding phases, each lasting up to 18 months.

In the first phase, funding is provided for particularly technically demanding start-up projects with long development times and proof of the basic technical feasibility of the project idea. In phase two, the focus is on development work to turn the product idea into a marketable product in the company and measures to start business operations.


The submission of project outlines is possible until June 30 and December 31 of each calendar year. For initial inquiries and the preparation of applications, the University of Bayreuth's start-up advisory service is available. For more information on the funding program, please contact: http://www.exist.de/

Bavarian support program to facilitate the transition to a start-up existence (FLÜGGE)Hide

The Bavarian support program FLÜGGE supports start-ups in the field of innovation, research and technology from universities in Bavaria.

Which projects are supported?

  • Projects that go beyond the state of the art
  • Projects that have clear unique selling propositions and
  • Projects that have a positive continuation forecast

Which subsidies can be applied for?

Three different grants can be applied for:

  • Up to 6 months of funding is possible to secure an innovative, also digital business model, which can lead to the establishment of a company.
  • ​If an Exist funding project could not be completed due to special technological challenges and no company has been founded yet, FLÜGGE funding can follow for up to 12 months
  • For example, if a technologically, innovative challenging Exist start-up grant was deemed too risky and the grant was not awarded, FLÜGGE funding can be applied for up to 12 months.

How is it promoted?

  • Scholarships: The amount of the scholarship is 2500 Euro per person per month (plus 150 Euro per dependent child).
  • Material resources: A maximum of half of the total amount of the scholarships can be applied for as material resources

Who will be sponsored?

The founders must be members of the applicant university. Employment at the university in addition to FLÜGGE is also possible if this position amounts to no more than 50% of the working hours.

Students can also be supported. If a Bachelor's degree is not yet available, at least half of the standard period of study must have been completed. Teams consisting of a majority of students without a Bachelor's degree can only be funded in exceptional cases.

If rights of use and/or protection exist, at least one team member must be co-owner or holder of the rights.

Projects that have already been started are not eligible for funding.


The project outline can be submitted from 31.01.2022 until 07.03.2022 at the latest. Start of funding is possible after positive evaluation at the earliest from 01.09.2022.

The applicant is the university. All necessary resources (rooms, infrastructure, etc.) will be made available to those wishing to start up.

A mentor must be appointed for the application and support. We will be happy to put you in touch with our experienced mentors:

For more information on the grant program, visit: www.bayern-innovativ.de/seite/fluegge

Our Founding consultants:

Do you have questions about funding opportunities for a start-up? Get in touch with us at: Gruendungsberatung@uni-bayreuth.de

Bild Andreas Kokott

Dr. Andreas Kokott
Foundation consulting
E-Mail: andreas.kokott@uni-bayreuth.de
Phone: 0921 / 55-4672
Fax: 0921 / 55-4616

Zapf-Building, House No. 1
Nürnberger Str. 38, 95448 Bayreuth
Ground floor, Bureau No. 1.2.18

Bild Christian Teringl

Christian Teringl
Supervisor start-up projects
E-Mail: christian.teringl@uni-bayreuth.de

Bild Ayhan Celebi

Dr. Ayhan Celebi
Supervisor start-up projects
E-Mail: Ayhan.Celebi@uni-bayreuth.de

Webmaster: Dr. Petra Beermann, Prof. Dr. Rodrigo Isidor, Prof. Dr. Matthias Baum

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