Start of the application phase for TRIP – The accelerator program for pioneering innovations enters the 5th round

From now on and until October 15, Thuringian startups and founding projects can apply for the Thuringian Regional Innovation Program TRIP. STIFT’s 6-month accelerator program aims at investment readiness. Thuringian teams benefit on the way from expertise, network and budget to accelerate their innovation or disruptive technology.

The Thuringian Regional Innovation Program TRIP was launched in 2019 by the Foundation for Technology, Innovation and Research Thuringia (STIFT) as part of the ThEx innovativ project. As an accelerator program, TRIP aims to strengthen Thuringia’s startup community, accelerate innovation, and connect stakeholders in the innovation ecosystem. Participating projects work with TRIP coaches to develop a sound basis for their business concept and gain access to a regional to international network to trigger open innovation processes and generate collaborations. Since the start of the program, 47 teams from diverse fields such as IoT, AI solutions, mobility, sensor technology, new materials, green tech and space tech have already been advanced and successfully networked with the VC community.

What awaits the startups

On November 1, TRIP will start its 5th round. Over a period of six months, the selected projects can expect a tailored program aimed at the teams’ investment readiness. The program includes 1:1 coaching sessions and regular workshops on topics such as business model development, strategy, marketing, team design, financing and scaling. Participants also receive valuable feedback and space for reflection to continuously optimize their strategies. In addition to startup coaches, various industry experts will share their expertise on the workshop topics with the attending entrepreneurs.

TRIP provides a startup budget of up to 4,000 euros per team. This capital can be used for prototype development, product validation or user testing. But the focus is not only on financial support – participation in various startup events is also part of the TRIP Class, which specifically expands the teams’ networks. The participants meet other startups, SMEs and investors. The networks extend beyond national borders and provide exclusive access to the international innovation community.

For particularly promising projects, the door will then open in March 2024 to a further three-month final TRIP phase with a focus on VC financing. An absolute highlight and thus the final of TRIP is the participation in the Investor Days Thuringia in June 2024. Here, the selected teams will have the opportunity to pitch their innovation in front of more than 400 national and international stakeholders of the innovation ecosystem.

Open to all innovators

TRIP welcomes innovators from all industries and stages of development. The program sets no limits on the focus of ideas and projects. Rather, the goal is to promote forward-looking solutions and technologies that address the challenges of tomorrow. Specifically, the program is aimed at three groups:

1. founders who want to advance their already founded startup or their startup idea.

2. intrapreneurs who want to advance a technology within a company.

3. researchers who want to develop entrepreneurial concepts from research ideas.

The application deadline is October 15, 2023, and interested parties are invited to submit their applications online at


Olga Röder 

Project management | ThEx innovativ

Foundation for Technology, Innovation and Research Thuringia (STIFT)

Häßlerstraße 8 | 99096 Erfurt

03 61 · 789 23-72      

Andreas Sonnefeld

Project management | ThEx innovativ

Foundation for Technology, Innovation and Research Thuringia (STIFT)

Häßlerstraße 8 | 99096 Erfurt

03 61 · 789 23-75

TRIP ist eine Initiative der STIFT im Rahmen des Projektes ThEx innovativ und wird gefördert durch den Freistaat Thüringen aus Mitteln des Europäischen Sozialfonds Plus.

part of Stift