European accelerator competition heats up as Startup Bootcamp launches in Amsterdam

European accelerator competition heats up as Startup Bootcamp launches in Amsterdam

Startup accelerator Startup Bootcamp has announced that it is expanding with the launch of a new base in Amsterdam, adding to an increasingly competitive accelerator market in Europe.

Following the TechStars model, Startup Bootcamp selects a group of early-stage Internet companies, gives them up to €17,000 ($22,100) and puts them through an intense 3-month development and mentoring program in return for a small stake in each business, before presenting them to investors.

Startup Bootcamp already operates in Copenhagen, Dublin and Madrid, and the Dutch affiliate will be operated by experienced investors and entrepreneurs Patrick de Zeeuw and Ruud Hendriks. The program will be backed by Vodafone Netherlands, corporate services company Boer & Croon and a number of angel investors. Contacts in Amsterdam indicate to us that the program is likely to run from Vodafone’s HQ in the city, but this hasn’t been confirmed as yet.

The Amsterdam program will run from 9 April to 6 July 2012, and the deadline for entries is 12 February. It joins a fast-expanding European accelerator scene. Startup Bootcamp itself plans to launch in Berlin and London next year, while competitor Springboard recently moved into London. In Amsterdam, the Rockstart accelerator is already active, and its next program will run in a similar spring/summer timeframe next year.

As long as there are enough companies in need of seed investment and development work, competition between accelerators is a net win for the best candidate startups, as they can potentially pick the best package from a range of providers.

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