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Next Program

Next Program

Take your idea to the next level
October 17, 2022 - February 24, 2023

Are you an early-stage startup?

Join Vali Berlin's NEXT program and take your idea to the next level.

NEXT is a five-month startup program, designed to fast-track nascent ventures to reach the next level and grow. Participating startups will be supported to reach product-market fit, acquire their first round of funding, or their first customers.

Startups benefit from expert mentoring, access to the ESMT and Vali Berlin network, and a structured program of workshops by entrepreneurs and thought leaders from Berlin's startup scene. Stipends of up to 7,500 € are available for a startups based on need and achieving program milestones. Finally, all participating startups are granted wild card access to pitch on Demo Day in front of an audience of investors, the ESMT startup ecosystem, and a jury for a chance to win €5,000 prize money.

Program Overview

Quick facts

  • Program duration: October 17, 2022 – February 24, 2023
  • Format: The program is designed in a hybrid format, where only the first and last two weeks are in-person, whereas the rest of the program is conducted virtually
  • Cost: Free
  • Application phase:
    • Early Bird: July 21–August 12, 2022
    • Second Round: August 29–September 23, 2022


  • Network: Connect with entrepreneurs, investors, and corporates from ESMT Berlin and Vali Berlin network
  • Batch and community: Startup teams will come together in cohort chats to discuss and share ideas
  • Structured program: Structured curriculum with workshops and resources from experts, entrepreneurs, and investors
  • Mentorship: Serial entrepreneurs and experienced industry experts provide support during the whole program
  • Coaching: Design thinking coaches support startups during the process
  • Financial support: Selected number of startups will get up to €7,500 of financial support
  • Co-working space: Access to SpaceShack and ESMT facilities
  • Demo Day: Wild card to pitch in front of Vali Berlin network and investors, for a chance to win €5,000
Focus areas

Product-market fit

NEXT helps startups to reach product-market fit through mentoring, coaching, network and workshops from the ecosystem.


NEXT helps startups to acquire their first round of financing through matchmaking with Business Angels and VCs. Moreover, startups will receive a wild card to pitch at the ESMT Demo Day 2023. A selected number of startups will also receive a stipend during the program.


NEXT helps startups to build their internal and organizational capabilities by providing connections to technology universities, workshops and expert mentorship.


NEXT helps startups to develop their legal framework by providing resources on how to incorporate a company through collaborations with lawyers and tax advisors from the ecosystem.

Application Information

Who can apply?

-    Teams with an innovative idea, using technology
-    Idea needs to create economic, environmental, and social value
-    First validation of market need—MVP or first prototype

Application process

NEXT Application Process

Program Structure

NEXT Program Structure

Do you want to take your startup to the next level?

Apply now
About Vali Berlin
Marie Kober

Create a better tomorrow

Vali Berlin - Entrepreneurship Hub at ESMT

Vali Berlin is the entrepreneurship hub at ESMT Berlin and fosters responsible entrepreneurship for economic, environmental, and social value creation. We do so through a range of initiatives in four main areas: We support founders and joiners, educate entrepreneurial leaders, shape an entrepreneurial culture and connect entrepreneurial stakeholders.

Learn more about Vali Berlin here.

outside of the ESMT Berlin building, from the front.
Baris Efe
Marie Kober and  Julie Rosenfeld, founders of SENVO
Vali Berlin scholarships

Vali offers Female Founders and entrepreneurship scholarships for full-time MBA students working at their own company or proactively exploring new business ideas.

Introducing Vali Berlin, the entrepreneurship hub at ESMT

In episode #13 of Campus 10178, the ESMT Berlin podcast, Baris talks about how Vali Berlin was created, the development of its SEP, and where it fits in Berlin’s startup ecosystem.

Summer Entrepreneurship Program 2021 - Demo Day

SENVO wins €5,000 prize money at Vali Berlin’s Demo Day at ESMT Berlin


Baris Efe

Manager & Co-founder at Vali Berlin - Entreprenurship Hub at ESMT
+49 30 212 31 1649

Henry Sauermann

ESMT Chair in Entrepreneurship & Academic Director at Vali Berlin - Entrepreneurship Hub at ESMT