About upCAT

The upCAT program is a deep tech accelerator program at KIT that supports teams in responsibly implementing new knowledge in founding a company. This is a special opportunity for our researchers to be accompanied in their first steps in this direction.

It is aimed at teams that either show a clear intention to strive for founding a company or are in the first phase of a successful founding.

The upCAT program is led by Professor Orestis Terzidis and is part of the KIT-Gründerschmiede. It is offered to all KIT institutes under the leadership of the Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology Management and Innovation (EnTechnon) in cooperation with DE Innovation and Relations Management (IRM). Participation is free of charge, but it requires binding participation in the dates offered (six days in total, beginning on March 1st, 2022).

As part of the package, each team is supported by individual mentors from science, industry and investors who are tailored to their needs and has access to an international network. It also prepares you for applying for public funding programs (e.g. EXIST start-up grant).

As part of the accelerator program, the teams get to know relevant methods and tools, develop the necessary skills for designing a viable business model and plan the first steps of concrete implementation.


The upCAT program follows a proven structure with the following steps:
  • The teams design a comprehensive business model based on their vision and values.
  • Then they identify the key underlying assumptions and consider how to validate them.
  • Under the guidance of the program trainers and with the help of interactions with KIT experts and its external network, the critical hypotheses are tested and the concepts are adapted accordingly.
  • On this basis, the validated business model can be brought into a communicable form and presented to the audience at the final event.


Questions? Interest in the program?

Please click here for dates of upCAT #10 and here for registation (open until February 22nd, 2022).

If you have questions or need additional information feel free to contact Allen Mohammadi.

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