From an idea to starting your own company

Startup consultancy at the University of Stuttgart

Whether you want to market an invention, develop an idea for a start-up, or you are interested in starting a company, our team of experienced coaches from different expert backgrounds can support you in all areas relating to start-ups. From idea development, to a specific conception and business plan, and even funding programs and financing.

At the following places, the University of Stuttgart gives advice on the topic of starting a business:

Initial consultation

The startup consultants at the University of Stuttgart offer support throughout the stat-up process, for startups with a technical background from scientific institutes, as well as students and graduates with a startup idea.

The consultancy service includes initial advice, the development of a business model, funding applications, training courses and networking options. Together with the Division of Research and Transfer, we also offer advice in relation to the use of patents and licenses.

TTI is the central point of contact for anyone interested in starting a business.
TTI is the central point of contact for anyone interested in starting a business.

Support during and after the startup phase – the TTI GmbH

TTI offers advice and information on all topics relating to the planned startup:

  • Planning and preparation of the startup
  • well-founded, motivating support when writing a business plan
  • Assistance in finding network partners as well as mentors and resources at the University of Stuttgart
  • Renting out space for startups in the Technology Center
  • Help with acquiring funds

Under the umbrella of TTI GmbH, students and academic staff can also establish transfer companies and launch startup projects. In the process, TTI takes on the legal, finance, and personnel management as well as the administrative contract review.

"Starting-up without an actual start-up"

The Transfer and Founding Company (TGU) offers all university members the opportunity to explore taking the first steps towards founding their own company.

As part of TTI GmbH, the TGU [de] is a unique feature that gives anyone wishing to found a company the opportunity to gain experience immediately. The TTI GmbH offers not only protection from risk, it also simultaneously functions as a marketing instrument.

Anyone wishing to develop their own start-up – preferably a member of the University of Stuttgart – has the opportunity to gain experience of being self-employed by getting involved in a Transfer and Founding Company (TGU) and working as a project manager within TTI GmbH. The TTI GmbH functions as a service provider [de], offering not only expert advice, but also financial and personnel management, and much more besides.

A sampler of successful business startups incubated by TTI

The three founders of Swabian Instruments in front of a notebook.

Time Tagger is the name of the “stop watch” that inspired three alumni from the University of Stuttgart -  Helmut Fedder, Michael Schlagmüller and Markus Wick – to found the start-up Swabian Instruments. “We develop measuring devices that detect electrical signals extremely quickly”, explains Fedder. “What makes them special is that they can measure individual light particles with extremely high temporal precision.” The conventional fields of application for the Time Tagger are quantum physics and quantum technology.

Swabian Instruments received the EXIST Start-Up Grant and was also awarded a place in the top three for the Baden-Württemberg Innovation Award. They were also finalists for the German Founder Award 2019.

Swabian Instruments

Impregnated carbon fibers

Markus Blandl, Gerd Falk and Steffen Müller are company founders and research associates at the University of Stuttgart’s Institute of Aircraft Design (IFB). The company uses fiber composite materials to produce a wide variety of products, from aircraft components to lamps and loudspeakers.

The Innfa company founders draw attention to the enormous and varied potential of this high tech material, for example in the fields of acoustics or lighting systems. They have also developed a completely new technology that can be used to impregnate carbon fibers quickly and easily without the need for complex technical equipment. After impregnation, the material can be unrolled and processed to create the desired form.

Innfa GmbH


Pinion specializes in innovative German gearbox technology. Over fifty international bicycle makers by now trust the quality and functionality of the P1.18 gearbox, with its 18 evenly- spaced gear step mechanism centrally integrated in the bicycle frame. This gearbox also laid the foundation for the development of the Pinion Bike, a high-end bike that regularly wins accolades, recommendations, and titles. Business founders Christoph Lermen and Michael Schmitz met in 2006, filed for their first patent in 2007, found an investor in 2009 and changed the previous name to Pinion GmbH. In 2011, they received the University of Stuttgart’s and TTI GmbH’s Technology Transfer Prize.



An innovative software and consulting business, scireum is headquartered in the Greater Stuttgart area and currently has a staff of nearly 20. Andreas and Michael Haufler launched scireum in 2008 as a transfer company startup with TTI: “TTI was one of the most important resources for getting us launched. Without it, our company would not exist." Their company became scireum GmbH in 2009; at present, it markets three in-house developed applications: DataHive database shadowing software, OXOMI, a distribution platform for product and marketing information, and SellSite, a B2B e-business solution.



Scatterblogs is a visualization app that can geolocate keywords, for example from Twitter or FaceBook posts, globally in realtime for event-driven visualization. This lets it rapidly pinpoint unusual events, such as natural disasters in specific regions. The company founders, Harald Bosch, Dennis Thom and Alexandros Panagiotidis, are University of Stuttgart graduates in informatics and visualization. The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy supported their business with an EXIST business startup grant. Currently, ScatterBlogs is partnering with the Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance (BBK) and local energy suppliers.



The three founders: Dr. Michael Raschke, Dr. Bernhard Schmitz and Dr Micheal Wörner with their mentor, Prof. Thomas Ertl (third from left).

The blickshift startup, founded by Dr. Michael Raschke, Dr. Bernhard Schmitz und Dr.-Ing. Michael Wörner, provides analytical services and software for eye tracking data. They use cutting-edge methods from the visual (Big Data) analytics research field developed at the University of Stuttgart. Visual analytics can significantly reduce the time required for and hence the expense of comprehensive eye tracking data sets. In addition, the algorithms they implemented open up new areas of eye tracking applications; for instance, for use in eye-dependent driving systems, the optimization of websites with a large number of testers, or improvement of the user experience in virtual and augmented reality environments. Their startup was supported by an EXIST business startup grant and is currently funded under the “Young Innovators” program of the State of Baden-Wuerttemberg.

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It will be crucial for driver assist systems of the future to quickly and reliably warn drivers of dangers. The blickshift software uses eye tracking to analyze the driver’s eye movements and behavior with the help of methods from the visual analytics research field. “Thanks to more efficient algorithms, our software substantially shortens the time required for analysis of eye tracking experiments,” Michael Raschke explains. Their startup has been supported by an EXIST grant since 2015. They developed their first project in TTI, Raschke recalls. “TTI made it possible to do business via our own section inside it. It is really a very comfortable and safe approach to learning business processes.”  




Christine Meier

Nobelstraße 15, 70569 Stuttgart

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