Tag: funding


Getting investor-ready and bridging the Valley of Death? Jan Geert van Hall answers

Getting investment as a startup is such a challenge that there are specific hurdles, one of which is the Valley of Death. YES!Funded team from YES!Delft aims to demystify this challenge during the Rotterdam Capital Days with a dedicated event. During September 18th – 22nd, the three-day event aims to demystify the world of capital, boosting access to funding for startups and scaleups. Ultimately, with the goal of connecting entrepreneurs and investors. Anyone with an interest in how to attract and raise capital in the area of Rotterdam is invited. Mainly, there will be investors – angels, corporate venture, venture capital, impact, public, and more. YES!Delft service YES!Funded will host an event about the so-called Valley of Death in funding. 
What is the Valley of Death?

Jan Geert van Hall, the investment director at YES!Delft describes the Valley of Death as a European problem – the funding gap startups almost inevitably run into. This funding gap usually comes about around the time they have a well-working prototype and some paying pilot customers but need a financial boost to start production and activate sales. At this point, the startups are too advanced for government subsidies, and at the same time too early stage for VC’s. At least in Europe. During the YES!Delft dedicated event at Rotterdam Capital Days, Jan Geert and guests will share the experiences of YES!Funded about the Valley of Death and explore possible solutions to this problem.

Through the YES!Delft service YES!Funded startups can get help with financial lifecycle planning and securing the right funds. The initiative is lead by YES!Delft investment director Jan Geert van Hall, who employs his decades of experience in tech and finance to help tomorrow’s leading firms. Is your startup is looking for its first investment or your startup is further down the road? Here Jan Geert shares his top five tips that are essential to make and keep your startup investor-ready. Join YES!Funded at the Rotterdam Capital Days, and learn about bridging the Valley of Death.

1. Financial forecasting

“The ability to look ahead and anticipate for the future is a basic entrepreneurial financial skill. The lack of such a vision within a company is a definite red flag as it shows a lack of financial discipline.”

2. Top team

“This is a big one. First off, the chances of receiving investment are very low if you are a single founder. Ideally, you have a team of people with different disciplines. Secondly, there is a shared long term vision in the company. Especially the founders should be on the same page and have the same ultimate goals, whether that is an acquisition or scaling up.”

3. Intellectual property

“IP is another facet investors will look at, and for several reasons. First, to make sure you will be able to defend your product from infringement. But parallel to that, they want to understand what it is your product is capable of and the problems it claims to solve. Why is your product unique, and why hasn’t it been invented before?”

4. Checking important milestones

“Having a roadmap with milestones and a clear vision is essential. It shows your estimated worth at each milestone but also the amount of money you need to get there is invaluable when presenting yourself to investors. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it demonstrates you understand your product, your market and you have thought about de-risking your proposition.”  

5. Quantify the risks

In conclusion, everything comes down to this. When you look from the perspective of the investor, you want to be able to assess the risk of your investment. Sure, you can never completely eliminate risk, but startups who can at least show an understanding or can quantify the risks and milestones, have a stronger case for investors.” 


Make sure not to miss the event Bridging the Valley of Death during the Rotterdam Capital Days!

Bridging the Valley of Death

On September 18th, 19th, 20th + Weekend, Rotterdam Capital Days aim to unveil the world of capital in order to boost access to growth-capital for startups & scale-ups.


CIC Rotterdam, Stationsplein 45, 4th floor, 3013 AK Rotterdam

Register now

On September 18th, 19th, 20th + Weekend, Rotterdam Capital Days aim to unveil the world of capital in order to boost access to growth-capital for startups & scale-ups.

As part of the Rotterdam Capital Days, YES!Funded created an event geared up towards the famous startup financing  Valley of Death


What is the Valley of Death? It’s always the toughest bit of the raising capital journey. It’s when a startup needs the outside capital at the beginning, prior to any sales. Since there are no sales, most of the investors decide to pass on investing in your startup! 


YES!Funded team – Jan Gert van Hall (Investment Director) and Carola Torrente (Funding Consultant) are bringing on the stage of this event startups, investors and more experts to tackle the problem from all its angles. 

The event is divided in two: the problem and the solution. 

First, two YES!Delft startups will pitch what is their current experience with searching for a funding boost to start the production and bring their current well-working prototype to the market. A third YES!Delft alumni startup will pitch its experience, and tell more about how they managed to survive the Valley of Death and successfully activate sales. 

The second and main part is a panel discussion on the current instruments available in the European landscape. Different parties who are involved on the investors and bank side to bridge the gap include RaboBank Direct Investments, Bert Oosthout as founder of WeShare Ventures, and Joarchim Blazer, expert in startup valuation and most importantly ambassador for revenue based financing. 


13:00 – 13:15 Walk-in

13:20 – 13:30  Welcome

13:30 – 14:20 Three YES!Delft startups pitching

14:20 – 15:00  Experts debating

Register for the Valley of Death

Top 10 startup success stories: March

It’s has been a busy month for the startup incubator YES!Delft – we officially opened our new location, YES!Delft The Hague. And our startups have been hustling too!  
Here we have selected the top 10 startup success stories for March:


1. Envision

Not only has AI startup Envision made the move to the brand new YES!Delft the Hague Digital Hub, at its grand opening they celebrated having successfully raised 250 000 EUR seed investment. Of course, they did so in traditional YES!Delft style; sabering champagne like pros!

Apply for the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab


2. Warp Industries

At Get in the Ring 2019, EdTech/AI startup Warp Industries wowed the 16 judges and came out on top in their battle. Out of 87 participants, this startup pitched their way to the top! This means they will be attending Global Meetup 2019 in Berlin, a huge networking event with other startups, investors, and innovation professionals.


3. VIBES.technology

Since 2016 the team has been developing intuitive and user-friendly applications that make complex sound and vibration levels analysis accessible. Now VIBES.technology have launched DIRAC, the first software of its kind and a breakthrough application for test-based modeling. DIRAC ensures traceability of results and indicates the quality of the measurement.


4. Smart-Ship

Currently in our Accelerator Program, Smart-Ship continues to make waves! Their ambitious goal of autonomous shipping has landed the team a feature in Maritime Delta. Their innovative technology aims for a harmonious collaboration between man and machine to minimize human error in the shipping industry.



The Dutch Semiconductor innovator won first place at the 2019 IoT World Cup for its work on energy harvesting technology. NOWI technology enables companies to use the energy that is already readily available around the device. This can be light, heat, movement or even radio waves. There is energy all around us that can now be converted and used to power IoT devices.

Apply for the Complex Tech Validation Lab



This MedTech startup, developing a brace to help stabilize the hands of Parkinson’s patients, has received funding from the Rabobank Innovation Fund. Moreover, Rabobank and STIL have joined forces so that the anti-tremor brace can be tested in a Clinical Study.


7. Somnox

This robotics tech startup dream team has landed (another!) feature by the BBC. Moreover, the first sleeping robots are on their way to the earliest backers of the startup! The first sleep robots started to reach their Kickstarter backers this week! A dream come true!



Big round of applause: BI/OND, one of our MedTech startups, has made it to the final of the Philips Innovation Award! On May 6, BI/OND are pitching against 4 other startups in the Innovator Award category grand final. And they’re not the only YES!Delft startup! DeNoize, part of the Accelerator Program, is in the final as well. The main prize is 50 000 EUR cash. Fingers crossed for both of these amazing startups!

Yesterday, the Semi-Final & Innovation Market took place in het Drijvend Paviljoen in Rotterdam. It was a day full of…

Geplaatst door Philips Innovation Award op Donderdag 21 maart 2019


9. Solar Monkey

The startup, whose innovative software maps the yield of solar panels, has raised 1M in funding. The money will be used to speed up the rollout, and breaking through in the international market!


10. Hello Tomorrow

We visited the Hello Tomorrow Summit in Paris, where we met many familiar faces! Rob Bedeuker, DSM Investment Director and one of the mentors from our upcoming BioTech Validation Lab, was a speaker in the summit. He talked during an investment panel focused on BioTech. Moreover, we were delighted to see some of our startups in attendance!

DeNoize, part of our Accelerator Program, ran a busy booth showcasing their noise-reducing glass solution.  

Nowi, incubated at YES!Delft, pitched in the Industry 4.0 track.

Munevo, EITHealth Validation Lab 2018 alumni, pitched in the Healthcare track. They also ran a booth where visitors could try out moving a scooter with smart glasses!   

Apply for the BioTech Lab

YES!Delft launches YES!Funded

YES!Delft launches YES!Funded: a brand-new initiative to support startups in their quest for funding

Startups need substantial funding to develop their products, as it happens to all highly innovative companies. However, the ‘funding journey’ may be arduous and startups are not always able to complete it successfully.

This is why at YES!Delft we have just launched a new service called YES!Funded, which has a unique flavour among all those offered by incubators all over our country. In a nutshell, YES!Funded assists entrepreneurs in their financial lifecycle strategy and finds money to fund their companies tapping into the most appropriate (private or public) available sources.

An active role in seeking funds for startups

The YES!Funded team plays an active role in seeking funds for companies: it does not just connect you with prospective investors or point you out at the right public funding source, but it actually negotiates deals with investors and writes grant applications for you. This means that entrepreneurs can focus on the growth of their companies while our YES!Funded team seeks the adequate ways to fund them.

The seniority of our team is another distinctive feature of YES!Funded as we have selected two of the most experienced professionals in The Netherlands to assist our startups in their quest for funding: Giovanni Pazienza and Jan Geert van Hall. Giovanni holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence and in the last two years he has consolidated his position as one of the most successful grant writers in The Netherlands, with success rates in the Horizon 2020 programme that possibly are unmatched in Europe. Jan Geert was the group controller and chairman of the investment board of KPN before becoming CFO of a group of Dutch tech companies; he has an extensive network and an impeccable reputation among private investors.

The business model of YES!Funded is simple to explain: startups that receive funding thanks to the actions of the YES!Funded team pay a small success fee (below market standards) so that the initiative can be extended in time and expanded in scope. This way, successful startups will contribute to the growth of YES!Funded so that more companies can use this service.

Planning companies’ financial lifecycle strategy and much more

YES!Funded is not only about securing funding, but also about planning the appropriate lifecycle financial strategy for the startups. Giovanni and Jan Geert are also available to review financial plans and answer any doubt related to financing in general. Furthermore, they will be involved in the Validation Lab, Acceleration-, and Growth programs at YES!Delft. All in all, they will contribute to turn ‘inventors’ into successful entrepreneurs.

On January 31st, these first 5 YES!Delft companies have been officially enrolled in YES!Funded.

Apart from these 5 YES!Delft startups, there is room for many more candidates. Are you interested in this initiative? Check out the website www.yesfunded.nl or send an email to yesfunded@yesdelft.nl.

Not a YES!Delft startup? No worries, YES!Funded is a national initiative that reaches beyond the borders of YES!Delft. Contact us and we will tell you more!

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