Horticulture incubator flourishes in Amsterdam

Together with city dwellers, plant and flower enthusiasts, innovators and more, Let it Grow – the world’s first floriculture incubation programme – helps startups that promote the green-living movement to grow. After a successful first edition last year, the programme is back with a new batch of environmentally minded startups.

The selected startups will get full access to the Let It Grow Lab at Amsterdam’s B.2 during the five-month programme, facilitating collaboration with a like-minded community of motivated innovators. And the incubator’s weekly training sessions cover important topics such as IP, growth hacking, pitching to potential investors, team composition and lean startup methods.

In addition, the teams will receive €10,000 in seed funding (no pun intended!) and will have access to Let It Grow’s awesome network of growers, distribution partners and horticulture honchos. They’ll also get exposure via the incubator’s expansive social media and communication channels. Let it Grow doesn’t even ask for any equity in return; however, the participating startups are expected make use of the products grown by the incubator’s partners.

Last year’s edition exceeded expectations

Everyone expected the startups from the 2016 edition to make it far, but no one could have predicted just how massively successful it was. Among last year’s participants were: Sprinklr, which picked up a whopping €150,000 in investment; ConnectedGarden, which won the coveted ‘Best Idea’ award at Planatarium 2017; and Living Light, whose innovative lamp, which harnesses energy from bacteria in soil, won the 2017 Border Sessions Award and was a Dutch Design Award finalist. Needless to say, we’re expecting big things from the next intake of startups.

Meet the new Let It Grow startups

The eight companies taking part in ‘Class 2’ of the incubation programme are:

  • Bloemenstorm (The Netherlands) – fills city flower boxes with growers’ leftover flower bulbs, reducing bulb wastage across the Netherlands.
  • Bloesembar (The Netherlands) – uses natural flavours from locally sourced flowers, fruits, herbs, leaves and seeds to make delicious – or lekker, as the Dutch would say – drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic).
  • Bloombox Club (United Kingdom) – offers plant subscriptions (indoor and outdoor alike), meaning that everyone can enjoy plants – no matter where they live.
  • Blumixx (Germany) – makes gardening easier and more efficient with its custom-made bag that contains blooming plants in an organic net.  
  • Clorofille (Denmark) – encourages DIY growing with its agriculture kits. Customers can grow useful things such as soap, paint and even edible plants!
  • Mama Botanica (The Netherlands) – uses its social media channels to inspire young audiences to care about plants.
  • Overlap (North America) – utilises AI to help revolutionise the horticulture industry. For example, the company’s app can identify plants on the go and gives users an option to have said plants delivered to their doors.
  • The Flower Family (The Netherlands) – provides an online flower service that offers fresh flowers from honest growers – all personally delivered by the company’s team of 'Flower Rangers'.
“I’m super excited about this year’s selection – half of the teams are international,” said Irene Rompa, Let It Grow Lab’s lead. “We have everything, from initiatives focused on sustainability by preventing needless waste to educational concepts, edible products and technological innovations powered by artificial intelligence experts – which is very interesting. There’s something for everyone, and I’m looking forward to seeing them grow and scale over the next five months.”