From idea to start-up
The Universität Hamburg's start-up service supports you in your start-up project from the idea to the foundation. Our services: We will be happy to advise you on the concretisation of your idea, possible financing and also inform you about public and private funding opportunities. The Universität Hamburg's start-up service team is made up of experienced start-up advisors from various disciplines. They have extensive specialist knowledge and advisory experience to provide you with qualified advice on your start-up project.
As a rule, you will go through various phases from the idea to the foundation: The following user journey describes what typically happens in the phases and what we have to offer you..
User journey – Typical phases of a start-up
Interest in founding and finding ideas
Are you basically interested in founding a company and would like to set up your own start-up, but you don't know all the things that need to be considered? You lack an idea or even have so many ideas that you can't decide? No problem: We give you an authentic overview of life as an entrepreneur:in and help you with creative techniques to find a variety of ideas and then systematically select the most suitable idea for you.
From the idea to the business model
You have a rough idea, maybe even a very concrete one, and have already talked about it with the first people in your close circle of family and friends? But now you are asking yourself: Is the idea really good enough to start your own business? Is there any demand for it at all and how do I implement it? Can I really earn money with it?
We support you in this phase in refining your initial idea. We provide you with design research approaches that enable you to find out more about your target group. With the help of various frameworks and canvases (such as the Value Proposition Canvas, Lean Canvas or the Business Model Canvas), we help you to structure, visualise and question your thoughts and experiences and thus help you to transform your initial idea into a promising business model.
Funding, subsidies & Co.
The decision has been made, the concept has been refined. Perhaps you have already talked to your first potential customers, but you lack the capital? There are many funding opportunities for people interested in setting up a business. However, they are usually linked to different requirements. Some funding organisations expect an idea to be pitched to a jury or a pitch deck with the general conditions of the start-up to be sent to them. Others require an application with expected values or milestones for the next 12 months, such as the EXIST Gründerstipendium.
To help you get the best funding, we support you in getting a better overview of the different funding opportunities. And once you have decided to apply for funding, we will help you with the drafting of the application, the development of a pitch deck or with further requirements of the funding bodies.
“Our start-up advisor Bettina definitely gave us a boost, because not only did she present us with the appropriate funding and tackle the application with us, but she also encouraged us above all, made us thematically fit and challenged us again and again. She gave us an impression of what is possible. That inspired us“ – Jamin Mahmood, Co-Founder Vulvani
Business registration and choice of legal form
You have a concept and enough capital to get started. Then it's time for the actual foundation. But the various business forms and the administrative processes behind them can be challenging. Very specific and unforeseen questions often arise now. Our experienced team supports you with basic questions and refers you to expert tax and legal advisors with a focus on innovations and start-ups.
Building a strong team
You will quickly realise that you need other people with expert knowledge to build your start-up. We have a broad and diverse network of experts from all fields and are very well connected in the world of start-ups. Our start-up service team will discuss your requirements with you and look for suitable contacts so that you can move forward quickly.
We also advise you on building a strong start-up team, e.g. by jointly identifying missing expertise and exchanging ideas on a suitable initial organisational structure for your project.
Development of the first offer (prototypes & MVPs)
For your start-up, developing a differentiated, value-added proposition is of course crucial. Regardless of whether it is a product or a service, we help you find the right approach for agile proposition development. We advise you on methods and tools for the rapid development of prototypes and their testing, and discuss with you the features to be prioritised for a minimum viable product, i.e. an initial, functional offering that needs to be further developed consecutively.
Entering the target market
You have founded a company or are about to do so and now you need to place your offer on the market. But who are the actual paying customers and how can the company be differentiated from competitors or substitutes?
Our start-up service team supports you in your initial positioning and helps you as a sparring partner to refine your market entry strategy. Our team will also help you to prepare a sales pitch as well as a clear, target group-oriented communication of your value proposition.
In doing so, each case is "a case in itself" - accordingly, we work with you to develop an individual approach to successfully place your offer on the market and establish it in the long term.
“At the end of the Exist phase, we had our first customer in 2016: Peter Merck from the Golf Lounge in Hamburg. At the start, there was a big press event and magazines asked us about it. That pushed us extremely forward. For us, that was the best showroom ever.“ – Christoph Pregizer, Founder & Managing Director Viewlicity