It’s the heart of the European Union, the centre of power and administration – and also home to a pulsing start-up scene? (Spoiler alert: Yes.)
There are loads and loads of different start-ups in Brussels; you can’t even have a drink or two without going home with at least two new business cards! This shouldn’t be a surprise, considering that the Belgian Government incentivizes the founding of companies by giving founders tax deductions on the cost of capital, on patent income and other research-related costs, and on capital gains.
The living costs are rather high (though not as high as Switzerland, of course!), but that leads a lot of people to share flats and houses, which often fosters the sharing of ideas and discussions related to projects.
But hey, it’s not all about the money!
As already mentioned, Brussels is considered the heart of Europe, resulting in people of many different nationalities living there. The EU Parliament, the Commission and NATO all attract people to come work here from all over the world.
According to «startUS-magazine», the Brussels-Capital Region alone contains 5 universities and approximately 25 higher education institutions. Together, these schools produce an impressive pool of highly educated People in Belgium, of whom many have one to three post-master degrees.
Everything a founder could ask for
Depending on who you ask, there are 5 to 10 startup-events every day in Brussels. Every month, there are new incubators and accelerators popping up. There are FuckUp-Nights, Hackathons, Co-working-Cafés…basically everything founders need! All this, combined with the remarkably good conditions for startups, guarantees that we will hear a lot more from Brussels’ startup scene in the future.
In upcoming articles, Start-alp magazine will introduce you to selected incubators, a few startups and events and show you some of the successes (and failures). We’ll also take a look at what is still needed to follow one’s startup dreams, even if the surroundings already provide as much as they can.
So stay tuned!