Since the middle of the economic crisis, and when the Spaniards began to understand that no one except ourselves could get us out of the situation we were in, the interest in new businesses creation in our country soared. Of course, one of the biggest challenges that entrepreneurs face is obtaining grants to launch a startup or business start-ups.
Startups are “the apple of everyone’s eyes” in the programs to support entrepreneurship because of their potential for growth and future profitability. So they have many avenues of help, not only economic.
The different types of aids to create a startup
If you have a business idea and you find yourself in this situation, the first thing to consider is that there is a very diverse and varied infrastructure surrounding the launch of new businesses. Aids to create a startup can be translated in many different ways.
First, if you create a startup or you are under the development process, you will benefit greatly from the set of competitions and contests for entrepreneurs held in Spain throughout all the year.
The events seek to gather in one place to all those who are interested in undertaking, together with an assortment of experts, consultants and successful entrepreneurs to share their knowledge. Contests are an excellent choice if you’re a novice entrepreneur with a business project in mind. Prizes include cash grants and / or personal advice for you to start taking your first steps with your business idea.
On the other hand, if we focused on the financial aspect, we can think of the variety of credit possibilities that banks make available to SMEs. Unfortunately, after the “bank recue” or as we prefer to call it, the Spanish financial institutions, despite the ICO loans, have imposed severe restrictions on lending.
However, there are other more specific alternatives, referred to entrepreneurship, whose first phase is what is called seed capital. It consists in an amount of money contributed by an investor to launch a business idea, not a loan that has to be returned, but involves the acquisition of an interest in the business. In this case we can find public organizations, banks, venture capital funds and, of course, “business angels”, private investors who act individually.
Finally, the aid to create a startup can also come in the form of advice, fully-equipped offices offered in favorable conditions and the opportunity to work and create synergies with other entrepreneurs in the same situation as ours. This is where the full range of business incubators and shuttles that exist in Spain come into play.
It is noteworthy that, in many cases, these various aids are combined in the same association or institution, so that it is sometimes difficult to establish clear differences.
Capital seeds and accelerators: Economic aid and support to create a startup
The entities mentioned below are mostly specialized in seed capital or advice to get it, although many of them also invest in second round funding. In the case of accelerators, they usually combine financing, training advice and contacts.
However, it should be noted that, unlike in the US, to get funding of this type of seed capital in Spain, it is necessary to have a good and well defined business plan or even that the company has already taken its first steps and even count on some customers.
There are a huge amount of seed capital entities in Spain, some specialize in specific sectors and others that have a much broader spectrum of investment. This is a small selection of some of the most significant ones:
The Centre for Technological and Industrial Development is a public entity which, among its many functions to support entrepreneurship, provides its own financial aid and access facilitates to third parties (primarily in the form of credits) for R & D + I business projects.
Digital Assets Deployment is a Spanish-based incubator for Internet and Technology 2.0 businesses and, which has a large international presence and support projects through seed capital.
- Caixa Capital Risc and Bstartup
These are the two separate divisions of the Caixa and Banco Sabadell, respectively, responsible for monitoring and financing of startups.
In addition to providing advice to selected projects, the Association of Investors and Entrepreneurs of the Internet helps them to achieve economic resources and to get access to funding rounds.
This venture capital company was founded by brothers Luis and Jose Cabieces. It enjoys great prestige in the Spanish investment landscape.
Business Angels Network of Madri + d is an investment network specialized in projects of technological nature whose companies have headquarters in Madrid.
The Telefonica startups accelerator offers capital injections of EUR 50,000 and support through mentoring and offices for the first months of operation.
Accelerator driven by Juan Roig, President of the company Mercadona in Valencia, which offers capital, mentoring and workspaces.
Prestigious Accelerator for technology-based projects that has the support of various business angels and that at the same time provides training, advice and networking for innovative entrepreneurs and startups.
In Spain there are many options to get aid to create a startup. The key is to have a good business plan, prepare an excellent pitch and know how to invest the necessary time to call as many doors as possible.
* Source: Infoautónomos.