Then apply now for the HTW Startup Challenge and win prize money totaling €15,000. It will take you only three minutes. 


Startups with innovative solutions for relevant problems can pitch for the following prize categories:

  • Female Founder Prize of the Berliner Sparkasse - € 10,000
  • HTW Startup Prize - € 5,000
  • EXIST Women - € 3,000 per scholarship holder

Please note that we are looking for advanced early-stage startups for the Female Founder and HTW Startup Prize. A project in the idea phase is not sufficient.

You cannot apply for the EXIST Women Preis; instead, the participating universities nominate female scholarship holders and the mentors select a female founder.


Apply for the Female Founder and HTW Startup Prize from now until March 14 (midnight) with a one-minute video and your pitch deck in which you convince us of your business model. Tell us:

  • Who are you?
  • Which problem do you solve for which user group/target group?
  • How do you solve the problem?
  • What contribution do you make with your startup?
  • How far are you with your project?
  • Why do you want to belong to the HTW community?

IMPORTANT regarding the video: Please do not show PowerPoint presentations; we want real people, as real as possible, so no filters. It should not be longer than one minute. The video is only used internally for selection purposes.

Do you have the video or the pitch deck? Then just tell us your contact details and share your video with us, for example via WeTransfer. We look forward to receiving your applications!


1. application video (max. 1 minute) and pitch deck
You can apply now until 14/03/2024 (midnight). The applications will then be reviewed and the best teams will be invited to the final on 16/04/2024.

2. Final on 16.04.24 at the HTW Berlin Campus Treskowallee
All invited startups will take part in the Startup Rally, where the audience will decide which startup wins. From the pool of applicants for the Female Founder Award, the three best Female Founder teams pitch for €10,000. Those who did not make it will be notified electronically.

The Jury

We are very pleased to introduce Dr Christian Segal, Prof Dr Heike Hölzner, Lena Scholpp and René Papenfuß as our jury and startup experts. 

Dr Christian Segal has more than 25 years of experience in advising and financing start-ups and medium-sized companies. He is spokesman for the Finance Forum at SIBB (Association of the Digital Economy), a member of the decision-making body of Bürgschaftsbank Berlin and a member of the IHK Berlin Innovative City Committee.

Prof Dr Heike Hölzner has held the Chair of Entrepreneurship and SME Management at the Berlin University of Applied Sciences since 2017. With her company Sirius Minds, Hölzner also advises high-tech founders on team development and financing issues. She is a business angel and co-founded the encourageventures e.V. investor network in 2021. 

Lena Scholpp is the founder of the start-up CareTwice (Link). CareTwice develops sustainable hair and body care products for the hairdressing industry and offers customers a sustainable shampoo powder made only from natural ingredients. Lena is also a business coach for the teams of the Berlin Startup Scholarship (BSS).

René Papenfuß is a psychologist, prospective psychotherapist and doctoral student at Charité. As Managing Director of the HTW start-up (SIB/BHT alumni), he and his two co-founders Moritz Kern and Roland von Ohlen are improving outpatient psychotherapeutic care with the digital full-service Tepavi. In doing so, he is actively promoting equitable care for mentally ill patients.


We have answered frequently asked questions >>> HERE <<<

If you can't find what you're looking for, talk to us or simply send us an email. We are glad to help you!