To all startups with business concepts for the circular economy
9 'Giga-Impact' Topics
Information about batch #5
About Circular Valley

Circular Valley® is a globally unique hotspot for the establishment of a future-oriented circular economy. Since its foundation of in the summer of 2021, over 70 startups from all around the world have participated in its Circular Economy Accelerator.
It is funded by the North-Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of Economics to leverage and further develop the unique strengths of the region by trendsetting, innovative circular economy concepts, products and business models.

At the core of our program, you will have the opportunity to connect with 100+ partners from industry, R&D and government from our Circular Valley® network. In addition, expert workshops, tailor-made trainings as well as an intensive coaching and mentoring program await you. You will be surrounded by a vibrant, international and diverse community of startups and the dedicated Circular Economy Accelerator team.
Upcoming batch #5

Following our mission, "Grow the Economy – Protect the Environment", we are looking for startups engaged in the transformation from a linear to a circular economy and that are keen on contributing to our unique environment in Circular Valley®.

Batch #5 of the Circular Economy Accelerator targets 9 "Gigaimpact" topics.

Circular Economy topics in core industries and their products:

  • Building Materials: full range of building materials, both renewable and non-renewable, particular focus on composite materials, tracking and tracing of materials and re-use/recycling of CO2- and resource-intense materials, reducing building material consumption
  • Capital Goods: full range of capital goods in all industries, from renewable energy assets over airplanes to CT scans, particular focus on those with a high footprint and difficult to re-capture components
  • Consumer Goods: broad coverage of all consumer goods, both single-use and durables, and the specific question of how to reclaim materials for further use at the same level, avoiding downcycling, incl. automotive for end-consumer use
  • Agriculture: all agriculture-related circularity topics, from avoiding negative environmental impacts in food production over losses in the value chain to the use of by-products or waste
  • Water: all water-related circularity topics, from gaining water in the first place (incl. desalination) over transportation, use and re-using and recycling water

    Cross-industry overarching topic

  • Alternative feedstock: all options to replace conventionally used feedstocks by alternatives with a lower environmental impact, particular focus on the potential of bioeconomy, both with respect to bio-based substances and biotechnology production pathways
  • Value Chain Orchestration: all methods and innovations to reduce or eliminate environmental impacts along the value chain, from improved packaging and transportation options to reverse logistics for recyclables starting at the consumer level
  • Recycling: sorting and recycling methods for all types of materials, regardless of the industry they are used in, at best in same quality
  • Plastics: specific focus on one material that currently has a huge environmental impact if used inappropriately, broad focus from single use plastics in packaging to high-performance polymers
What we expect from you

  • Interest to actively engage with our partners and to further develop your business model
  • Participation in our program components and on-site peer-to-peer exchanges. Please find the dates for batch #5 below
  • Fluently written and spoken English
What is important - timing

Batch #5 of the Circular Economy Accelerator will take place in Wuppertal, Germany, from September 04th until November 25th, 2023.

15 startups for batch #5 will be selected by the end of August, 2023.

There is one on-site attendance block of three weeks from November 6th until November 25th, 2023.

During the three-week attendance block, at least one representative of each startup must attend the program on site.
The attendance block coincides with the Circular Valley Forum on November 16th. The Forum brings together over 1.000 decision-makers and high-profile guests. More information about the Forum can be found here.

Check out our FAQ section to find more information about the accelerator program.