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Antwerp Startup Fair: generating leads and attracting investors

  • On March 29, 2017
  • AcademicLabs, accelerator programme, Antwerp startup fair, business incubator,, entrepreneurship, Marc Van Peel, startup, startup accelerator, startup community, startup incubator, startups,, tech startup, tech startup programme, tech startups, telenet, Telenet Kickstart

Antwerp Startup Fair: generating leads and attracting investors

28 March 2017: a date that was clearly marked in the calendars of startups, entrepreneurs, investors and jobhunters alike. And with good reason: the Antwerp Startup Fair at De Shop in Antwerp is an incredibly vibrant and stimulating trade fair slash networking event for anyone interested in buying from, investing in, or working for startups. As a proud partner of the Startup Fair, Telenet was very happy to catch up with some Kickstart alumni who were rocking their business at De Shop. Let’s hear what they had to say!

AcademicLabs: “Getting our platform out there”


AcademicLabs busy booth was peopled by Ruben Huys and intern Alvaro Moreno Pubul, who were both very enthusiastic about the opportunities the Antwerp Startup Fair had to offer. Ruben: “We met a lot of interesting people – not only investors, but also entrepreneurs who wanted to team up with AcademicLabs. It’s so much fun to hear what other startups are doing.” During the ‘Invest in Startups’ morning track, AcademicLabs got in touch with several investors, many of whom were interested in what the startup had to offer. Ruben: “We want to hire an experienced marketeer and invest in marketing in general. Our platform is about ready; we just need to get it out there and put it in the spotlights.” “Lots of leads and interesting connections”

It took a while before we managed to get hold of co-founder and business lead Karel Callens, who was engrossed in conversations with interested parties and demonstrating the platform to them. “The event really has been a success thus far. I didn’t even make it to the morning session because I was so busy generating leads,” Karel laughs, showing off the impressive stack of business cards he collected in a few hours’ time. “Our first follow-up meeting is already planned for tomorrow.” is currently looking for investors – several parties are interested – so they can hire a marketeer and two developers, and introduce other countries to Karel: “ is doing well, but we want to shift faster.” Also present at’s popular booth: intern Arne Huysegoms, who explained the benefits of working for a startup: “Thanks to my internship, I get a taste of many different jobs. While you get assigned just one task if you work for a more established company, I am gaining experience in a wide range of areas, from Sales to Development.”

Why the world needs startups

In his speech, Antwerp city council member Marc Van Peel stressed the importance of both startups and the incubators and accelerators that support their efforts. He also drew attention to the fact that startups who were present at the Antwerp Startup Fair had no less than 63 job openings … Opportunities abound!