EXIST Transfer of Research

Funding phase I

In an initial funding phase, EXIST Transfer of Research supports outstanding, research-based start-up projects with financial funds. The funding period covers up to 24 months, in individual cases even 36 months. Projects that are associated with risk and time-consuming development work are funded. In this way, research results are to be refined, which have the potential to form the basis of a company start-up. The aim is to carry out development work to clarify fundamental questions regarding the implementation of scientific results into technical products and methods. In addition, the funding serves to foster a business plan as well as targeted preparation of the company formation.


In the area of human resources, EXIST provides funding of up to four digits for team members. One of the persons must have an economical background here. Material resources of up to 250,000 euros – in justified individual cases even more – can also be applied for. The MPG has basically committed to assume 10% of the total funding sum. This co-financing is provided after approval of an EXIST Transfer of Research fund from the TT translational funding of the MPG General Administration and is not at the expense of the institute budget.

Process description of funding phase I

Click to zoom:

Funding phase II

In funding phase II, EXIST funded start-up projects can contribute a further 180,000 euros of financial subsidy. As a prerequisite for this, equity capital amounting to minimum 60,000 euros must be demonstrated by the startup. The second funding phase focuses on implementing further development work, measures for commencing the business activities as well as establishing the prerequisites for external company financing.

It is possible to submit the application twice a year by January 31 or July 31. You will receive an initial interim registration after the expert appraisal by the specialist jury approx. 3 months later. If the result is positive, you will be invited to a jury presentation. The entire time period between submitting the application until approval and payment of the funds is normally 6 to 8 months.

Website EXIST Research Transfer


The team at Max Planck Innovation has already successfully supported start-up projects for many years in their application for an EXIST Transfer of Research grant and is well acquainted with the application process. The application is only comparable with ‘conventional’ research applications to a limited extent, and above all, presupposes company- and market-related considerations. As early as possible a preparation of the application is therefore urgently recommended. Please involve Max Planck Innovation as early as possible and allow for at least two months for the application processing and corresponding preliminary work.


Senior Start-up & Portfolio Manager

Dr. Florian Kirschenhofer

Diplom-Kaufmann, MBA

Phone: +49 89 / 29 09 19-31

Start-up & Portfolio Manager

Sebastian Meyer-Borchert


Phone: +49 89 / 29 09 19-42

Start-up & Portfolio Manager

Dr. Achim E. H. Wolf

Master of Business Research
Master of Arts Economics

Phone: +49 89 / 29 09 19-26