Keeping Amsterdam’s startup ecosystem strong

The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is affecting almost all aspects of life and work in the Netherlands and beyond. Fortunately, support is available to members of the startup ecosystem during this challenging time, offering relief for companies, entrepreneurs and the self-employed.

Access support and information

The Dutch government has created a support package for self-employed people, SME entrepreneurs and large companies. It includes compensation for those working in the hospitality, travel and event sectors, assistance with paying employee salaries and the extension of business loan programmes, among other things. Additionally, the collection of some taxes will be postponed. 

Bridge loans for startups, scale-ups and SMEs

Additionally, the government has set aside €100 million for a bridge loan programme to help startups and scale-ups, which due to their unique structure, may not qualify for other kinds of assistance. The money will be distributed through several organisations, including the Innovation Fund, which will focus on Amsterdam-based businesses. Applications for the loans open on 29 April at 9:00 and will be available through a digital portal

Update 22 May: after attracting a significant amount of applications, the bridge loan programme has been expanded, with another €150 million being earmarked for the scheme.

Invest-NL has contributed another €100 million for bridging loans to ensure innovative high-potential startups and scaleups impacted by the crisis can access venture funding. The loans will be worth at least €2 million each and businesses that have social impact will receive priority. 

Stay safe and informed

The website of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) provides advice on preventing the virus, information on the safety measures in place and the latest medical information. Additionally, I amsterdam is offering updates and the City of Amsterdam website has relevant info in English for businesses and freelancers. 

StartupAmsterdam is still hard at work as well. For questions or assistance, members of the startup ecosystem are encouraged to reach out by phone or email. As the days and weeks go by, StartupAmsterdam will also share relevant information through its website.