Saarland University rises to second-best university for start-ups in Germany
The “Start-up Radar” of the “Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft” in Germany is the central indicator for start-up activities in the environment of universities and higher education institutions in Germany. Now the Stifterverband has published the current ranking for the year 2022. Saarland University, which has already been among the top ten start-up universities for decades, rises from eighth to second place in Germany.
The subject of founding businesses has a long tradition at Saarland University. Already since 1995, founders from science have been systematically accompanied here, longer than at almost any other German university. In recent years and months, these competencies have been continuously developed and recently bundled with the creation of “Triathlon” (press release).
The decades of effort are yielding results. Accordingly, over 500 start-ups with a good 4000 jobs have been accompanied out of the university in the past decades. On average, the Triathlon team supervises 120 start-up projects per year, resulting in about 30 start-ups. In the Gründungsradar, in which the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft annually examines hundreds of German universities with regard to their attractiveness for founders, Saarland University has been able to claim a place among the ten best large universities since 2013.
The Stifterverband evaluated the universities in the categories “large” (over 15,000 students), “medium” (5,000-15,000 students) and “small” (under 5,000 students) in a total of seven categories with up to ten points each. Saarland University achieved a top ranking in all categories (more than 9 points). In the categories start-up anchoring, start-up support, monitoring and evaluation in start-up support as well as start-up networks, the top score of 10.0 was achieved.
“The fact that we have now achieved second place among the ‘major universities’ in the current ranking, even in the environment of renowned universities of excellence, is impressive proof that we have consistently taken the right path in recent years. It underlines the continuously great work that the UdS does at the interface between science and business,” says University President Manfred Schmitt about the currently published ranking.
Ralf Zastrau, Managing Director of Triathlon, emphasises the importance of start-up activities and transfer in the environment of the university for structural change in Saarland: “For decades, Germany’s strength has been based on special entrepreneurial activity in regions. This is where a large part of the added value is created. The fact that we are excellently positioned in the ranking as a ‘hidden champion’ compared to the supposed ‘big players’ underlines the increasing importance of integrated, regional start-up infrastructures such as we have been able to create in the past.”
Jens Krück, head of the UdS’s central Triathlon facility, adds: “Our success as a team is based on diverse, heterogeneous expertise – coupled with practical start-up experience – as well as on the support of our numerous partners: these include, in particular, the Saarland state government and the nationwide ‘EXIST’ programme.”
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