The world is being hit by several crises simultaneously, which are mutually dependent. We refer to them as the polycrisis.
We believe that impact startups are the key to develop innovative responses to the polycrisis.
We are looking for impact startups that are doing climate action, making our democracies more resilent, or developing solutions for displaced people.
Empowering impact startups to create breakthrough solutions to the polycrisis.
We support impact startups in tackling the world’s most pressing crises through our incubator and accelerator programs.
The world is full of crisis
The war in Ukraine, the climate crisis, the loss of biodiversity and mass extinction, the crisis of democracy…
Transforming our economy
from cause to solution
Our economic system should be transformed from causing to solving many of these crises. We don’t need short-term profit maximisation at the expense of people and environment.
We need sustainable business models that serve society in the long term and ensure our survival.
System change with impact startups
Impact startups plays a key role in addressing the various, constantly changing crises and challenges we face in society. They addresses one or more UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs) at the core of its business. This means: if you remove the impact you also remove the business.
Impact becomes the new normal
What if every founder would develop new business models and approaches to make our world more livable and sustainable? All new startups would be impact startups! Their success could motivate established companies to change their business models and practices.
Do you have an idea for a solution?
For solutions to long-term crises within the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
Or quick solutions to acute crises such as the 2015/2016 refugee crisis, the COVID-19 crisis, and the current war against Ukraine?
We can help you with our accelerator program
In our accelerator program, we will guide you for 5 months to turn your idea into reality.
We offer you access to funding, coaching from experienced mentors, access to our network. We will work side by side at bUm. A co-working space for social entrepreneurs, nonprofit organizations and activists.
It’s a match?
We support startups in all stages. Do you have an almost finished prototype that you can test or an existing startup that you want to bring to a new level? Your team consists of at least two founders. Non-profit as well as for-profit organizations can apply.
Fighting Climate Change
Making our Democracies More Resilient
Supporting Displaced People
We are a diverse and interdisciplinary team of impact-oriented professionals with many years of startup experience.
We are well connected in the impact community. Let’s connect!
Sebastian Neumann(he / him)
Franka Ismer(she / her)
Our mentors and experts
Here you can connect with mentors from our programs
Johanna von Herman-Kim
Pieter van Midwoud
Masiar Emanuel Nashat
Dr. Christian Humborg
Dr. Thomas Warnke
Dr. Thomas Gnefkow
Ask us anything
Do you have any questions?
We can chat here.
If you encounter any technical or other difficulties while submitting your online application, please feel free to reach out to us.
Need a 1:1 call?
Want feedback on your documents before you apply? Lets make an appointment for a video call as soon as possible. Someone from the PHINEO Startups team will give feedback on your pitch deck. After that, you have until the end of the submission period to integrate our feedback into your application.
You need to accept functional cookies to use the scheduling feature.
Connect with our current participants.
Petra H. Holthusenshe/her
Meri Khazaradze(she / her)
Kseniia Teslenko(she / her)
Connect with our former participants.
These startups participated in our accelerator program:
Julia Hildebrand, Will Franklin
Jan Christian Sahl
Katharina von Stauffenberg, Till Voß
Mathias John, Maria Pozder
World for Climate
Markus Johanning and Fabian Hütter
Jesus Bueno Alvarez, Lara Rashdan
Anne Schönauer, Tilman Trompke
Francis Dossou Sognon and Elvis Azonsi
Lu Yen Roloff
Re:Build Ukraine — Mentor & Protegee Program
Kim Welti, Lea Jacobsen, Petra Holthusen
Volynska Gazeta (ViLNi Project)
Tetiana Poudel, Olha Danyliuk
Ukrainian House Berlin
Bogdan Miftakhov, Daniel Donath
Viktoria Fialko, Natalya Ulyanova, Tatyana Ulyanova
Centre for Alternative Conflict Resolution
Anastasiia Aizenshtat, Maksym Zinchenko
Genya Moore, Myroslava Perevalska
Dr Hamed Beheshti, Ali Al-Hakim
Ivan Kychatyi & Nikita Overchyk
Bake for Ukraine
Maria Kalenska & Olena Vorozheikina
Mykolaiv Water Hub
Nataliia Kovalenko, Maryna Soroka, Elena Korchagina, Ana Lichtwer & Nataliia Egorova
Alex Biloshytsk, Valeriia Biloshytska, Alexandr Zubchenko & Nataliia Sereda
Hanna Kolesnichenko & Yuliia Karnas
We Do Solar
Karolina Attspodina & Qian Qin
Anna Believantseva & Dmytro Gazda
Kseniia Teslenko & Meri Khazaradze
In the press
Esper Bionics, is included in TIME magazine’s list of the best inventions of 2022. The self-learning prosthetic hand powered by artificial intelligence (AI) was named a groundbreaking invention in the accessibility category and will appear on the magazine’s cover.
PHINEO Startups wird im Rahmen des Programms „REACT with impact – Förderung des Sozialunternehmertums“ des Bundesministeriums für Wirtschaft und Klimaschutz unterstützt und von der Europäischen Union als Teil der Reaktion der Union auf die COVID-19-Pandemie (REACT-EU) finanziert.