Company incorporation, formation and legal structure

Techstars can only accept companies into Accelerator Programs that are incorporated in the following countries, where we have a legal process and ability to invest.

If the company is not incorporated in one of the countries below, the founders must commit that the company will re-incorporate into one of these acceptable countries (commonly referred to as a “flip” or “flipping”) prior to receiving investment from Techstars Berlin.

(in alphabetical order)

  1. ADGM (Dubai)
  2. Australia
  3. British Virgin Islands
  4. Canada
  5. Cayman Islands
  6. Denmark
  7. Finland
  8. France
  9. Germany
  10. Hong Kong
  11. India*
    Only if the company has not raised any prior funding from outside investors AND has not filed a valuation report with the Indian Tax Authority
  12. Ireland
  13. Israel
  14. Italy
  15. Japan
  16. Netherlands
  17. Norway
  18. Portugal
  19. Singapore
  20. South Africa*
    There are certain South Africa exchange control requirements to consider.
  21. South Korea
  22. Spain
  23. Sweden
  24. United States (recommended)
  25. United Kingdom (recommended)

If you haven't incorporated a company yet, please seek legal counsel and lawyers with lots of experience immediately. Not having incorporated will not impact the investment decision, but you can expect delays in getting our investment. 

We don't require founders to incorporate in any specific jurisdiction, but as investors we do recommend founders take the necessary steps to ensure the company has the brightest possible future. When considering where to incorporate, here are some things to think about:

Where do the founders plan to be following program?
It makes sense for the company to incorporate in the country in (or near) which the founders plan to be post-program
Where is the company's primary target market (vs available market)?
What is the stage of the product roadmap for marketing and technology?
In general, earlier is better when considering a Flip, and tax/IP considerations are more difficult as the company grows in value.
Where is the company's IP owned? (Many countries have an exit tax or other restrictions when IP is moved from the country.)
Where is the company's IP developed, if different than where it's owned?
Is the Company's IP subject to any exclusive license?
Has the company accepted, or is the company eligible for, government grants, loans, or other incentives in its home country?
The existence of favorable grants and company incentives can be a strong incentive to remain in country and prohibit a company's Flip.
Who are its major customers, and where are they located?
Has the company raised VC investment?
Is the country of formation exchange control regulated? If yes, what are constraints / restrictions associated with such foreign exchange controls?

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