Public funding

Founders in Germany can gain access to public financial assistance at local, national and EU levels.

Public funding

Such financial aid aims to provide systematic support to founders and start-up businesses. The most common types of public financial support are loans (with or without guarantees), equity, grant programmes as well as consultancy allowances (cf. "further options"). As financing terms and criteria may vary considerably, founders are advised to review the relevant details well in advance.

Funding programmes
Overview of funding programmes (loans, grants, guarantees and investments) which are particularly popular among start-ups in Hamburg
Hamburg Chamber of Commerce

InnoRampUp (subsidy)
The programme supports innovative startups and companies, which are in particular technological and younger than two years. The maximum amount of the grants are up to 150,000 €.
IFB Innovationsstarter GmbH (german) 

InnoFounder
The programme supports teams in the pre-startup and foundation phase by a personalised flat-rate grant. The maximum amount per startup is 75,000 €.
IFB Innovationsstarter GmbH (german) 

Innovationsstarter Fonds
As an early-stage investor, the Innovation Starter Fund Hamburg provides to young, innovative startups in the startup and growth phase with venture capital up to 1 Mio € in the form of open participations.
IFB Innovationsstarter GmbH (german)

InnoFinTech
Until the end of 2022, young startups can apply for up to €200,000 in funding for their startup and development phase in their first 5 years after founding as the FinTech, LegalTech, InsureTech and PropTech sectors.
InnoFinTech Funding (german)

BG-Bürgschaft
This programme offers a loan guarantee to entrepreneurs in Hamburg who are asking for a loan from their house bank.
Bürgschaftsgemeinschaft Hamburg GmbH (german)

High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF)
Germany’s seed stage investor. HTGF invests venture capital in technology companies
High-Tech Gründerfonds

Startup competitions
Start-up competitions are another possibility to receive financial and non-financial funding. This website lists some federal and regional competitions. (This website only exists in German)
Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy

EIT Digital Challenge
An annual contest in the areas Digital Industry, Digital Cities, Digital Wellbeing &  Digital Infrastructure, Digital Finance. The „EIT Digital Challenge“ offers access to a broad ecosystem of partners, internationalisation support, participation in an event in Berlin, complimentary publicity and visibility and the possibility to join the EIT Digital Accelerator (see: accelerators). The winner of each category receives 50,000 Euro.
EIT Digital