Grants for start-ups in Estonia

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There are numerous reasons why new and experienced founders are looking towards Estonia to launch their start-up businesses. Besides offering a fair and simple tax environment and ease of running a business, Estonia has also become a place where the ideas that shape tomorrow are born and get their funding. Along with that, the Estonian government is working tirelessly to develop an ecosystem that can help Estonia to become one of the most innovative countries in the EU and on the planet.

In collaboration with the EU, a wide range of grants for start-ups in Estonia are available to help develop and expand new business and innovative ideas. Getting funds from the Estonian government or the EU can be one of the best ways to get your start-up on the right path as many important doors will become open afterwards.

It is important to note that the most effective routes to raise capital for an Estonian business is to be managing the company in Estonia and there are several ways that both EU and non-EU nationals can move to Estonia to do so.

Below is a list of grants for start-ups in Estonia that Enterprise Estonia has on their website in December 2022 website:

Support for the implementation of the development plan for creative enterprises

Grant up to €75,000 of which at least 25% must be self-financed.

For whom is the grant intended?

  • SMEs registered in Estonia and operating in the field of the creative economy.
  • The company applying for support must have been operating for at least the last three years.
  • Based on the latest annual report available in the business register, the company’s sales revenue from activities in the fields of the creative economy must be at least 200,000 euros, of which the export sales revenue must be at least 20,000 euros.
  • The company has at least two employees at the time of application.

For what can the grant be used?

  • personnel development
  • organization and process development and implementation
  • product, service or technology development
  • development of sales and marketing activities

Find out more about this grant.

Eurostars

Grant up to €300,000 of which 40%-60% must be self-financing.

For whom is the grant intended?

For a small and medium-sized company that wants to implement a product development project with at least one partner from a Eurostars country.

The Eurostars project application is submitted jointly with the partners on the Eureka IT platform.

The costs related to the project of companies that received a positive decision in the Eureka Eurostars program are financed by EAS.

For what can the grant be used?

  • salary
  • assignments
  • provision of services
  • materials and supplies
  • use of equipment

Find out more about this grant.

Digitalization roadmap support

Grant up to €15,000 of which 30%-50% must be self-financing.

For whom is the grant intended?

  • For Estonian companies of any size, whose field of activity is not outside the target group of beneficiaries. The average sales revenue of the main activity of the previous two financial years must be at least 200,000 euros.
  • Minor aid does not exceed 200,000 euros.
  • Companies that have not previously received digital diagnostics support and are not in difficulties.

For what can the grant be used?

  • to create a roadmap for the company’s digitalization
  • proportion of support

Find out more about this grant.

Horizon Europe Partnership “Key Digital Technologies”

Grant up to €300,000 of which 20%-70% must be self-financed.

For whom is the grant intended?

  • companies engaged in the design, development, production and integration of electronic components and systems and the development of software solutions necessary for the operation of components and systems.
  • Estonian companies participating in projects approved in a joint tender are financed, k. a. large companies.

For what can the grant be used?

  • salary
  • assignments
  • provision of services
  • materials and supplies
  • use of equipment

Find out more about this grant.

Support for the digital transformation of companies

Grant up to €300,000, up to 50%, must be self-financed.

For whom is the grant intended?

A private legal entity registered in the Estonian business register, whose average sales revenue for the two financial years preceding the submission of the application, according to the annual reports submitted to the business register, must be at least 200,000 euros in the applicant’s main field of activity in Estonia two different application rounds.

  • for companies in the processing industry, mining industry
  • to other sectors
  • support is not applied to the following sectors
  • de minimis aid (VTA) does not exceed 200,000 euros
  • he or his legal representative does not have a valid sentence under § 209, 2091, 210, 2601, 372, 373, 379 or 384 of the Penal Code
  • economic activity has not ended or stopped
  • the tax debt to the state, including interest, is not more than 100 euros or it has been postponed
  • tax declarations and annual reports have been submitted
  • is not in bankruptcy or forced liquidation and has not been subject to a liquidation decision
  • is not an entrepreneur in difficulty, if so, required under state aid rules
  • is the qualification or experience and legal, organizational or technical prerequisite for the implementation and management of the project

For what can the grant be used?

  • acquiring material assets that can be integrated with software systems or machine learning or vision systems necessary for automation
  • development and implementation of intangible assets and digital technologies / the cost of contractual research activities, knowledge and patents purchased or licensed from external sources on market terms
  • organizing the necessary training for the development and implementation of digital technologies and robots and automation for its employees
  • consulting services for the purchase, development and implementation of digital technologies and robots, as well as for automation
  • payment of employees related to the development and implementation of digital technologies and robots, as well as automation, and persons acting based on a debt law contract

Find out more about this grant.

Company development programme

Grant up to €500,000

For whom is the grant intended?

  • For an industrial company or a company fulfilling the objectives of smart specialization that has been in operation for at least three years and employs at least eight people
  • The company has export experience or sales turnover has increased by an average of 5% per year during the last three financial years
  • The company has a clear ambition and potential to grow and bring new or significantly improved products and services to the market

For what can the grant be used?

  • development of the company’s organization and processes
  • product or service development
  • development of sales and marketing activities
  • people development
  • acquisition of equipment

Find out more about this grant.

Support for the development of e-invoices

Grant up to €20,000 of which 50-75% must be self-financed.

For whom is the grant intended?

  • for Estonian companies of any size, which offers e-invoice operator service, cash register system, payment solution or other business software service
  • Registered in the Estonian Business Register at least 12 months before the application deadline
  • the turnover of the financial year preceding the financial year of submission of the application was at least 40,000 euros
  • de minimis aid (VTA) does not exceed 200,000 euros.

For what can the grant be used?

Activities 1-3 can be done as individual activities or all activities at once.

1. Development of the adoption of the EU e-invoice standard

2. Development of the digital data exchange interface of the company with the PEPPOL data exchange network

3. Development of the automation of the user journey of the user of e-invoices in the digital software

Mandatory activity if support for activities 1, 2 or 3 is requested.

4. Marketing activities for the wider adoption of e-invoices

Find out more about this grant.

Need a reliable business partner for your start-up in Estonia? Incorporate is here for you!

As listed above, there are numerous advantages and grants for start-ups in Estonia from which founders can benefit from to grow their businesses.

If you need help establishing or managing your start-up business in Estonia, you can count on our experienced professionals and business network to get you started on the right path. If your business stands to make a difference in the world, then make sure to reach out to us and let’s change the world together!

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