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Over the past decade, Flanders has witnessed a remarkable evolution in its startup ecosystem, characterized by robust government support, the proliferation of incubators and accelerators, increased access to funding, strong academic-industry collaborations, notable success stories, and a supportive tech infrastructure.


Government initiatives in Flanders have fostered a startup-friendly environment, offering incentives for research and development while nurturing innovation in emerging sectors like SaaS, DeepTech, biotech and many others. Organizations such as Start it @KBC, imec.istart and others have played pivotal roles in providing crucial support and resources for startups in their early stages. Moreover, the region has seen a surge in venture capital, angel investment, and diverse funding options, empowering startups to scale effectively. Collaborations between universities and industries have fueled innovation, leading to the creation of tech-driven startups. Flanders has also witnessed notable success stories and exits, attracting global interest in sectors like FinTech, SaaS, BioTech and others. The presence of robust tech infrastructure, co-working spaces, and support from various organizations like LRD, IMEC, VIB, VLAIO and others has further bolstered the startup ecosystem.

Challenges in the current economic climate

However, recent analyses suggest a challenging economic climate for startups and the landscape ahead might not be favorable, resembling more of a prolonged drought than a passing storm. (see article)


The current economic crisis has significantly impacted the start-up ecosystem in Belgium, resulting in decreased investments and a decline in the number of new start-ups.


In light of these challenges, strategic partnerships with strategic partners become imperative for startups to secure funding and realize growth.

Cresco: pioneering corporate partnering

Cresco emerges as a pivotal player in the local entrepreneurial scene, specializing in corporate partnering and alternative strategic collaborations. We understand that success in today's dynamic market requires more than just financial backing. It demands innovative collaborations, strategic alliances, and shared visions.


Our expertise extends beyond traditional funding models. We believe in the power of partnerships that drive growth and innovation. We help startups forge alliances, leverage resources, and explore new opportunities for growth.


Cresco has written the book "Innovate, Collaborate, Grow" in order to provide a framework for corporate partnering models. The main reason of this book is to provide each entrepreneur with strategic, but at the same time practical guidance for the analysis, design, negotiation, and implementation of a broad range of corporate partnering transactions.



It is important to notice that we do not just facilitate transactions at Cresco; we cultivate relationships. Our approach focuses on fostering a collaborative ecosystem where startups can thrive and innovate. We provide mentorship, guidance, and legal support tailored to the unique needs of each partnership.


Tech Tour events serve as catalysts for tech ambition, connecting entrepreneurs with investors, experts, and regional partners for success. These events not only provide valuable networking opportunities but also foster innovation and collaboration which are essential for the growth of the startup ecosystem. By participating in events like Tech Tour, startups can expand their networks, explore potential partnerships, and gain insights into emerging trends and opportunities.


For more information about Cresco’s service, please visit the website: