Startup Visa Facilitator

Start your innovative company in the Netherlands

Startup Visa Facilitator 

Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship (ECE) is a recognized RVO startup facilitator for international innovative startup entrepreneurs. A Facilitator is a business mentor that provides the entrepreneur with support. Having a facilitator is one of the conditions for getting a startup visa. With a startup visa, international startups get one year to start an innovative company in the Netherlands. 

Read this first!

If you want to join the Startup Visa Facilitator programme, you should not apply for one of the other programmes separately!

Startup programmes

What support does the Startup Visa Facilitator programme provide? 

ECE offers three programmes that entrepreneur can take part in. 

1. Erasmus Startup Programme

The Erasmus Startup Programme is a four week programme that empowers you to validate your scalable business ideas and find your first customer. We train you to use the entrepreneurship process by heart and understand how you can find out what your customer wants.

Find more information about the Erasmus Startup Programme here.


2. Erasmus Business Programme

The Erasmus Business Programme is a 10 week programme that empowers you to find the right business model, test your pricing models and set up your supply chain. During this programme you will be pushed to take the next step. You have already validated your customer base and what is desired by your customer, now you need to create a viable business out of it and maybe close your first (real) sales deals.

Find out more about the Erasmus Business Programme here.


3. Business Membership Programme 

Do you want to speed up the development of your startup? Interaction with fellow entrepreneurs? A dedicated workspace? The ECE Business Membership allows you to join our community and benefit from all the facilities while staying lean. Through the ECE Business Membership, you’ll be able to have a dedicated workspace and to attend workshops and accountability sessions every month. 

Find more information on the Business Membership Programme here.

Application Process

Ready to join?

Conditions & Costs

When you want to apply for a startup visa and therefore a residence permit in the Netherlands, there are several general conditions that apply to your stay. You can find the general conditions here.  

Apart from the general conditions there are conditions that apply to you as well as your facilitator. You can find those conditions here. 


If your company gets selected for the Startup Visa programme, you sign a 12 month contract with the ECE. During these months, you will have access to the Get Started Programme, the Get Business programme and the ECE business Membership Programme. This means you can develop your business in educational prgrammes, but you also have a workspace in the inspiring science tower among other start-ups and have regular access to coaching. The costs are 250 euro’s per month for this 12 month period. An upfront payment of 250 euro’s is required after signing the contract. This payment is used to cover our administrative costs in the application process and is non-refundable, regardless of whether you are granted the visa or not. If the visa is granted to you, the upfront payment will serve as the first monthly payment. 

Steps you must take when you apply for a startup visa at ECE 

Internationals applying for start-up visa with ECE as facilitator need to match the following requirements: 

  • An innovative startup idea 
  • A match with the Dutch Market 
  • A worked-out business plan 
  • A prototype 
  • Preferredwork with a team 

Fill out the following form for the ECE team to see whether you are eligible for applying for a startup visa with ECE as facilitator. 

After you filled out the form and you meet all the requirements, you might get invited for an interview at ECE in Rotterdam. If we decide to be your facilitator after the interview, you need to take the following steps: 

1. You have to fill in the following form:
2. You need to have a pitch deck/ businessplan containing:

  • your role as entrepreneur within the company
  • describe why your product or service is innovative 
  • describe which activities you as a starting entrepreneur will take in the first year to develop your idea into a business (for this you can describe your entry into the Erasmus Startup Programme more information of this below) 

3. You need to be registered at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce or have the intention to do this immediately after coming to the Netherlands.
4. You need a facilitator agreement, this is an agreement between the two of us (you will receive this form from us)
5. The Dutch IND wants you to have sufficient funds to sustain yourself in the Netherlands for one year (minimum of 14.000,- E)

Get in touch

Interested to know more?

Curious to learn more about the Startup Visa Facilitator Programme?

Get in touch with Ruben Habraken.


Phone: +31 10 302 1331

Ruben Habraken

Programme Manager Education