Scientipôle becomes WILCO
Scientipôle Initiative was founded in 2001 as a non-profit organization (1901 law) to support the creation of young innovative technological enterprises on the “Plateau de Saclay” (south of Paris) Scientipôle Initiative offered free coaching and interest-free loans called “Prêts d’honneur” to entrepreneurs seeking to structure and scale their business.
Between 2002 and 2010, its action gradually extended to all Paris Region departments.
In 2012, Scientipôle Croissance was created adding a portfolio of services to help selected businesses scale faster.
In 2017, after having accelerated over 1,000 Paris Region startups, Scientipôle Initiative and Croissance merged and WILCO was born. Wilco is a unique accelerator program offering 5 industry-specific tracks, helping selected innovative startups achieve their first million €uros in revenue within 3 years.
Thanks to our successful public/private business model (Paris Region Council / Caisse des Dépôts + 35 Corporate Partners), WILCO is the only startup accelerator in Europe offering:
- A 3-year, 3-step accelerator program onboarding 150 new startups every year: 15 startups x 5 accelerators twice a year
- 5 industry-specific accelerators: Healthcare, Retail, Industry, Digital and BtoC
- A comprehensive support service package focusing on the key growth levers for innovative startups: business development, funding, HR, communication/media
- Early-stage non-dilutive and interest-free funding: up to €120K 0% entrepreneur loans per startup with no personal guarantee
- An ecosystem built for and around young entrepreneurs: mentor entrepreneurs, business developers, public partners, corporate partners, investors
- A non-profit model 100% aligned with the entrepreneurs’ interests
- Entrepreneurs Operations Team (10 people): 1 manager + 1 account manager per industry-specific accelerator – each pair operates “Start”-“Loan” and “Up” sessions and manages its own ecosystem (mentor entrepreneurs, business developers, corporate partners, investors, etc.)
- Support Team (5 people): manage WILCO support activities (P&L, startups loan budget and repayment plans, startups support services budget, etc.)