Startup Lisboa the corner stone incubator in Lisbon region and part of an urban regeneration project for Lisbon’s downtown area (Historical buildings).
Startup Lisboa the corner stone incubator in Lisbon region and part of an urban regeneration project for Lisbon’s downtown area (Baixa), including the reuse of historical buildings.
Initiative of the Lisbon City Council, in a wider strategic umbrella “Lisbon Creative City” and part of city’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.The ignition spark for this incubator stemmed from the Council’s participatory budget of 2009/2010, having been one of the most voted ideas that year.
Startup Lisboa, a private non-profitable association, founded in 2011 with the support from Montepio Geral (bank) and the Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation.
Startup Lisboa, the most important incubator of the Lisbon network of business incubators, supports entrepreneurs through partnerships, Legal offices in Lisbon, Investors, business and technical support to develop business ideas that are innovative and ready for the market and attracts investment to support the growth of their business.

It’s not just another incubation program It supports startups by providing an environment to grow: office spaces in downtown Lisbon or in the Lisbon Innovation Hub, and co-working spaces. They also manage the airport business center and provide a place to founder to live.

Offering two incubation models: physical and virtual, for both support structure includes: mentoring, linking to strategic partnerships, access to investment/funding and office hours with domain experts. Community is our greatest asset.

Resources needed

Business Mentors;

Investors network (national and international);

3 people;

Funding for building renovation works: <1M€;

Evidence of success

Some members have teams abroad developing new markets, some participated in recognized accelerators like 500Startups, TechStars and YCombinator
Key stats, Since 2012:
- 3800 applications received;
- 280 supported startups;
- Entrepreneurs from more than 35 countries;
- 1500 jobs created;
- 80M Investment raised by startups;
- 2 historic buildings rehabilitated in downtown with work spaces;
- 1 residence for entrepreneurs ;
European Enterprise Promotion Award 2013 by European Commission

Difficulties encountered

Although the location in the city center was important for visibility, not being close to a University limits its capability in attract young talent, specially engineering students. Startups need more human resources than the founders and being close to a University helps.

Potential for learning or transfer

The involvement of the City Hall in the creation of an incubator in the digital area has benefits that go beyond the promotion of entrepreneurship. Incubated startups have promoted the city has a good location for a company to grow and also showed the quality of the talents available in the region. The victory of Jaime Jorge, founder of Codacy, in Websummit 2014 in Dublin, gave visibility to the local entrepreneurial ecosystem, attracting the event to Lisbon in 2016. Nowadays with 60 000 participants and an overall impact the economy estimated in 200M€. The current venue will be doubled to 100 000 sqm where Websummit will be held for the next 10 years.
To achieve this desired impact, applications to Startup Lisboa are evaluated with global vision criteria:
– Innovative product/service with global character and scalable;
– Feasibility and Team capacity to implement;
– Financial sustainability and growth potential;
– Creation of employment;
– Product/service developed by the team.

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Main institution
Lisboa, Portugal
Start Date
January 2011
End Date


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