To all startups with business concepts for the circular economy
3 'Giga-Impact' Topics
Information about batch #6
About Circular Valley

Circular Valley® is a globally unique hotspot for the establishment of a future-oriented circular economy. Since its foundation in the summer of 2021, over 90 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 130+ 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 #6

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 #6 focuses on the following three topics:

1. Value Chain Orchestration
: Special focus on economically viable and scalable

  • Innovative solutions for sustainable product design to enable frequent product and material loops on high material/product quality levels for high-volume materials and products
  • Innovative logistic concepts to facilitate and organize reverse logistics which are economically viable, scalable and sustainable to 'beat the entropy' by enabling or organizing collections after the last loop of use.
  • Economic incentive systems to be implemented by private or state bodies, might be supported by a level playing field
  • Platforms which offer an economically viable contribution to reverse logistics and recollection
  • Special wild card: Simulation games which could be used for education in kindergarten, elementary and high schools, universities and to sensitize the common public and politicians in order to grow the understanding of the complex interaction of various enablers and barriers for a sustainable circular economy

2. Alternative Feedstocks with the inclusion of bioeconomy

  • Alternative feedstocks for fossil materials (fossil materials are all materials taken from the geosphere, either organic or inorganic)
  • Solutions for 'unused' or 'sub-optimally used' biobased materials w/o any competition to food and w/o any non-sustainable impact on the environment for an 'out-of the-niche', scalable substitute for fossil materials

3. New Chemical Recycling Technologies

  • Optimized technologies concerning energy consumption. Proven to be lower than for the production of virgin fossil plastic and/or
  • Optimized technologies with the highest output for plastic-to-plastic recycling and/or
  • Optimized technologies concerning carbon footprint. As close as possible to the carbon footprint of mechanical recycling and/or
  • Optimized technologies which can work with lowest input quality of plastic materials and/or
  • Optimized technologies which can work not only with one polymer type but with mixtures of polymers
What we expect from you

  • Interest in actively engaging with our partners and further developing your business model
  • Participation in our program components and on-site peer-to-peer exchanges. Please find the dates for batch #6 below
  • Fluent in written and spoken English
What is important - timing

Batch #6 of the Circular Economy Accelerator will take place in Wuppertal, Germany, from March 25th to June 02nd, 2024.

15 startups for batch #6 will be selected by the end of February 2024.

The program consists out of 2 virtual and two on-site attendance blocks.

First virtual block: April 02nd – April 07th
First presence block: April 08th – April 21st
Second virtual block: April 22nd – May 12th
Second presence block: May 13th – May 31st

During the three-week attendance blocks, at least one representative of each startup must attend the program on site.

Check out our FAQ section to find more information about the accelerator program.
Application deadline is February 23rd 2024, 11:59 pm (CET).