Get to know the 14th Business Model Challenge’s participants

For full-time program, we collaborated with our partners Accenture on the theme Skills to Succeed. Our aim was to prepare the next generation to thrive in the new economy.

Our part-time program included startups with business plans to improve the world in other ways.

Full-time “Skills to Succeed” program participants:


“We want to distribute high- quality cashmere and pashmina shawls made for women by women. During our experiences in South Asia, we met remarkable women with a lot of potential but without the right environment to blossom in. We want to help women develop their craft, become more independent and improve their financial situation by making unique, handmade and eco- friendly shawls.”


“We offer Kenyan cooking workshops for individuals and groups, particularly as a team building activity. In 4 hours, we teach participants about Kenyan cuisine using simple ingredients available at their local food store. In addition to our cooking workshops, we offer catering services for private and corporate gatherings – from cosy dinners to elegant soirées.”

Design My Finding

“Academic researchers can often suffer from a lack of motivation to make a positive impact, as academic demands such as publications and conferences take their toll. We want to join research and field work, help translate preliminary findings into design products and co-create solutions together with local makers and the target group.”

De Toekomst

“We believe a lack of funds should not prevent pupils from achieving their full potential. Which is why we provide homework assistance to children whose parents cannot afford it. Our initiative gives children the confidence and knowledge tools they need to become academically successful.”

Hyman Advies

“We want to inspire teachers and students to practice the sort of skills they will need to make their boldest dreams a reality. To achieve this, we incorporate classroom activities that encourage the development of higher order thinking skills, namely analysing, evaluating and creating.”

Learning Ventures

“Learners have varied needs, but schools, other educational institutions and NGOs are not always equipped to meet those needs. Although the volume of research on our education system is growing, research findings rarely result in new practices. We believe that there is a market for evidenced-based programmes that offer learning materials and match technical support such as training and evaluation services.”

Movement on the Ground

“We operate a pop-up hotel in one of the towers of Amsterdam’s former Bijlmerbajes prison. We have turned this unique building into a colourful, inspiring and welcoming place open to the public – an ‘experience hotel’ with a social mission, run by refugees. Our goal is to help newcomers start their new lives in The Netherlands with purpose, dignity, a supportive network and access to the job market.”

Perception Libre

“Our venture, which is currently in its proof-of-concept phase, wants to combat the widely spread abuse of low-skilled migrant women in The Netherlands. Our aim is to support these women with the tools and research needed to unlock their potential, become financially independent and put an end to their abuse.”

Pitch Professionals

“We give pitch trainings to startups, corporate innovation teams and large organisations, as well as host an online Pitch Academy. We helped 600 startups to successfully pitch their growth and we have trained more than 8,000 people at large companies such as ING and IKEA. Our next step is to develop the sales tools to make our Pitch Academy bigger, better and available to a wider audience.”


“Our mission is to assist organisations who are aiding people in dire need. Reaching out to a large group of people requires a great amount of human and technical resources, which are generally scarce. With this in mind, we developed a phone-based technology to improve communication between humanitarian organisations and people in need.”

Springboard Youth Academy

“We run an innovative summer programme that offers young asylum-seekers and refugees newly arrived in the UK the chance to make friends and settle into British life before they begin school. Using learning and wellbeing outcomes to measure progress, we take a holistic approach to education.”

Teachers Lab Impact

“We boost teacher well-being by helping schools to create a positive working culture – one in which teachers avoid exhaustion and burnouts. We believe that healthy teachers make for successful, well-prepared students. We envision that our efforts will culminate in a new service: innovation spaces for public authorities to help bring about the much needed systemic change of our educational culture.”

Part-time program participants:

Aim for the Sun

“We supply big events, such as music festivals, with solar energy and stimulate event participants to transition to sustainable energy and the private harvesting of solar power. Instead of widely spread diesel generators, we use our solar deck to charge our batteries and deliver them to the event organisers in a fully operational form.”

Behavioural Insights Nederland

“Behavioral research shows that many daily choices are not conscious, but shaped by our circumstances. With better behavioural insights, the government can help people to make better choices. By linking policy makers to academics, we use scientific knowledge to create pragmatic solutions to common problems.”

Billie Wonder

“We want to sell cloth diapers and the necessary accessories in an online store and a physical shop. Combining the design, photography and financial skills of our co- founders, we want to make such diapers more accessible to a wider audience of new parents. To change the product’s old-school image, we plan to collaborate with digital influencers.”

Eco Not Ego

“We want to create a platform that provides exclusive access to companies with widely recognised sustainability certifications. These companies have the opportunity to review the services provided by others listed in the system to ensure sustainability is properly implemented in tourism products. And they also get the chance to join the knowledge exchange section of the platform.”

Farmed Today

“We operate an online marketplace that supports the transition to a fair and sustainable food system. In our marketplace, sustainable food farmers can create their own storefront, set their own pricing and sell their products to local consumers. We also collaborate with companies such as Instock to make food that would otherwise been thrown away available to the public.”


“Our craft doughnut shop champions sustainable living and the idea of a circular economy. We want to become a doughnut purveyor that uses its retail space to show how sustainable living is within the reach of every single consumer and achievable with simple, incremental changes in our daily habits and behaviours.”


“If we want to boost the resilience of our planetary resources, the way we deal with raw materials needs to change. We work on the transition from manufacturing objects with a finite lifespan to a circular production process. With our MIHYAP project (short for ‘May I have your attention, please?’) we use a circular business model to design and distribute a floating vase made of sustainable materials.”


“Recent legal developments in Chile require food labelling to include information on health benefits. In addition, Chilean consumers are becoming more interested in sustainable food. But often products imported from Europe are seen as superior to local alternatives. Given these new food regulations and growing demand for eco-friendly products, we want to stimulate the development of the local market.”

Moderne Hippies

“We are an online Dutch platform for adventurers and free spirits who are passionate about living a free, adventurous and conscious life. Each week we create and share articles on topics such as fair fashion, natural cosmetics, balanced nutrition and mindful travelling. In addition to our online activities, we organise successful offline events, such as Moderne Hippie Markt.”

SAM Application

“We fight loneliness with a mobile app. Through our app, we facilitate meaningful human contact and help people to rediscover the benefits of an active social life. To support them in overcoming social anxiety and insecurities, we are developing a SAM Guide, which can diagnose loneliness and provide cognitive behaviour therapy.”

Stichting Stem van de Nacht

“We work to bring together artists, thinkers and party lovers by curating stimulating events that combine art, music and thought leadership. We do so because we want to inspire a new generation of art lovers and have a positive influence on their personal development.”

The Good Design Market

“Our business – currently in its ideation phase – will focus on the development of an online market for sustainable designs hand-picked from local communities and artisans. We plan to carefully select artisanal objects that fit contemporary design trends and distribute these via a user- friendly online store targeting the European market.”

Impact Hub Amsterdam’s three-month Business Model Challenge (BMC) incubation program is designed to help ambitious entrepreneurs turn their brilliant ideas for a better world into successful startups. Apply for the 15th edition by 10 September 2018.