FAQ

 

The most frequently asked questions are answered here. Can’t find the answer to your question? Just send us an email and we’ll get back to you.

What is Xplore US?

Why should I apply for Xplore US?

What kind of companies is Xplore US looking for?

How does the contest work?

What can I win?

What’s the deadline for submitting my company?

What are the judging criteria?

How do I apply? Do I need to submit a business plan?

How will my application be handled?

When is the finale pitch day planned?

 

What is Xplore US?

Xplore US is a contest for innovative SMEs and Scale-ups organised by RVO and commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In this contest companies present their business plan and strategy to expand to the US. RVO pre-selects the 20 best applications to enter the Finals. If you are selected, you will pitch your US market strategy for an independent Jury on the 28th of September. The Jury will select the top-10 SMEs with the best pitches and plans, who will be awarded with participation in a ten-day accelerator programme by kTeams - an MIT spin-off for international companies - in Boston (USA). The award includes accommodation in Boston and travel from the Netherlands to Boston and back (for one person per company only).

Why should I apply for Xplore US?

Because your next most logical step is to expand to the US market. If you need to know how to navigate in the US, especially in the greater Boston area, if you want to get hands on advice and coaching from local experts, meet your potential customers and build on your local network, this is your chance!

What kind of companies is Xplore US looking for?

Xplore US is looking for innovative companies that are ready to start their US market exploration. Any Dutch SME or Scale-up meeting the following criteria can apply for the contest:

The company

  • is registered at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce;
  • has an innovative product or service;
  • is not necessarily a technology company, but has a technological component;
  • is already selling products/services on commercial terms, unless it is a life science company and the added value of the Boston programme for your business can clearly be explained;
  • has revenues from sales, unless it is a life science company;
  • has attracted no more than € 10 million in total investment;
  • has a have a balanced team with scientific, technology and business skills;
  • has the ambition to expand to the US market and this is shown in the business plan.

Next to that, for an optimal result the person joining the programme in Boston should be a company decision-maker and comfortable speaking English. Not sure if you should enter? Contact us.

How does the contest work?

To enter the contest you fill in an application form, in which you answer questions about your company, your ambition, your product and your US market strategy. If you don’t have a clear strategy yet, you can prepare your submission assisted by Dutch Basecamp, who can help you fast-track your US ambition into a US market strategy.

RVO will pre-select the 20 best applications to enter the finals. If you are selected, you will pitch your US market strategy for an independent Jury on the 28th of September. The Jury will select the top-10 SMEs with the best pitches and plans, who will be awarded with participation in a ten-day accelerator programme by kTeams - an MIT spin-off for international companies - in Boston (USA).

The award includes accommodation in Boston and travel from the Netherlands to Boston and back (for one person per company only).

What can I win?

The award consists of a preparation day in the Netherlands, participation in a tailor-made, ten-day accelerator programme in Boston (USA) with kTeams and a follow-up meeting in the Netherlands. The award includes accommodation in Boston and travel from the Netherlands to Boston and back (for one person per company).

Step 1: Preparation, October 2017 Xplore US kicks off with a one-day preparation programme in the Netherlands to make your stay in Boston as productive as possible. You will be introduced to each other, to the programme and you will start working on your US pitch.

Step 2: kTeams Accelerator Programme in Boston, from 30 October to 10 November 2017
You will go beyond ‘innovation tourism’ by truly immersing yourself in the Boston startup ecosystem, where you will be a member of CIC, a community of 800 startup companies across the street from MIT. You will participate in interactive expert sessions on doing business in the US: from product strategy, company presentation (pitching US style) to funding opportunities and legal pitfalls to mention a few. All the while you will be mentored individually by several coaches from various disciplines, who will prepare you for effective personal introductions to potential partners, customers and investors.

Step 3: Follow-up after the Boston programme, December 2017
Within one month after completion of the Boston programme, your follow-up steps will be discussed in individual sessions.

What’s the deadline for submitting my company?

The submission deadline for the contest is 7 September 2017, 12:00 PM

What are the judging criteria?

For the selection of the companies, at least the following criteria are taken into account by the jury:

  • Quality of the product/service
  • Feasibility of the US market strategy and added value of the programme
  • Team quality and experience

How do I apply? Do I need to submit a business plan?

To enter the contest you fill in an online application form, in which you answer questions about your company, your ambition, your product and your US market strategy. If you do not have a clear strategy yet, you can prepare your submission assisted by Dutch Basecamp, who can help you fast-track your US ambition into a US market strategy.

How will my application be processed?

After the submission deadline, RVO will pre-select the 20 best applications to enter the finals. RVO will inform finalists by e-mail. If you are selected, you will pitch your US market strategy for an independent Jury on the 28th of September. The Jury will select the top-10 SMEs with the best pitches and plans, who will be awarded with participation in a ten-day accelerator programme by kTeams - an MIT spin-off for international companies - in Boston, USA.

When is the finale pitch day planned?

The finale day is planned on the 28th of September.

I have a question that is not answered here. Please email your question to scaleup@rvo.nl