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KPN for startups and scaleups

Our fruitful collaboration with innovators

We believe in open innovation in order to make a real impact in a rapidly changing world. In cooperation with innovative stakeholders, in order to stay ahead. That’s why we’re creating a fruitful and innovative climate for startups and scaleups. By combining our strengths with those of startups and scaleups, we’re advancing the Netherlands.

KPN is working with diverse startups and scaleups in the field of innovation. Because every day we experience how valuable these collaborations are. For us and our customers. For the innovators, who we help to develop with our expertise and technology. And for society, which is rapidly discovering new solutions that make life smarter, simpler, and better.

Our focus in scouting for innovation

Our Liaison Management team is looking for innovative parties with a focus on these 9 subjects:

Liaison Management: looking for the click

We’re constantly looking for win-win partnerships with startups and scaleups. So, KPN has a special Liaison Management Startups and Scaleups team. A team that makes contact with innovators: startups and scaleups who offer solutions to challenges that KPN is looking for answers to. We work in a demand-driven way and seek the best innovators with whom we can innovate together on specific issues. We share our knowledge of technology, marketing, and sales with these innovators as well as our extensive network of business partners and customers, so that these startups and scaleups can grow quickly. And: with their creativity and boldness we can also improve KPN’s products.

In addition, we invest via KPN Ventures in scaleups that fit with our strategy. KPN Ventures offers these entrepreneurs access to our organization’s expertise and services. And gives them the power to mature quickly.

Do you want to stay informed of the latest developments? Come to one of our events.

Deals with over 350 startups and scaleups

As of 2015, KPN has done over 350 deals and projects with startups and scaleups. A collaboration with KPN can take the following forms:

Proof of concept at KPN

Does a scaleup match our issues and challenges? Then we start a Proof of Concept: research into whether their solutions work in practice. With clear joint evaluation criteria.

KPN as customer

Does the invented solution work? Then we can work together structurally, with the startup or scaleup as a KPN supplier.

Investing in scale-ups

KPN Ventures invests in strategically related scaleups. You can find the criteria on kpnventures.com


With co-creation, we combine our expertise and technology with that of the startup and scaleup and together we bring a product or service to market.


Do the scaleup’s solutions match our own products or services? Then we can offer our KPN channels as a sales channel.

KPN as supplier

For startups, we have a special offer for our business services. For example, we offer them free LoRa-keys, so that they can experiment with our energy-efficient wireless network. And we help them develop their digital security, APIs, and working in the cloud.

Insight into traffic flows

Traffic flows on networks changed drastically as a result of Covid-19. KPN worked together with Benocs to manage traffic optimally and to keep the whole of the Netherlands connected. A solution was applied to gain knowledge about and insight into traffic flows. Think of insights into network management, but also into the optimization of Netflix traffic flows.

More about Benocs
Buddies for Rotterdammers

Budgetmaatjes010 helps local Rotterdam residents who are facing financial problems by matching them up with a buddy. A pilot is underway in which 7 KPN employees volunteer to act as an advisor (buddy). A decision will then be taken about whether to roll out the pilot on a larger scale.

More about Budgetmaatjes010
Better connection in rural areas

KPN has applied Tessares’s hybrid access solution to help many of our customers in rural areas to achieve a better connection. This solution increases the connectivity in remote locations by combining the communal DSL/HFC network with wireless bands such as 4G and 5G.

More about Tessares
See what you can’t hear

Speaksee is a solution that allows KPN employees with hearing issues to participate in meetings. Specifically, the Speaksee technology transcribes live speech into text so that everyone can follow what is being said. The use of colored microphones and displayed text also makes it possible to follow who is saying what.

More about Speaksee
Startup and Scaleup Events

Where can you meet us?

These are the forthcoming meetings where we’ll be meeting startups and scaleups. Will we see you there?

KPN Partnerworld program

We’ve established KPN Partnerworld to provide practical help to startups and scaleups. A program that comprises elements that are accessible to all interested parties as well as elements that are only available to our collaborating partners or the companies KPN invests in.

Partner network

KPN has an extensive partner network to connect innovative startups and entrepreneurs and to help with expertise, service and financing.

ABN-AMRO, Ace, Accenture, Aexus, AkzoNobel, Albert Heijn, Amazon Web Services, Amsterdam Student Investment Fund, Anwb, AWS, Cambridge Innovation Centre (CIC), Costa, Cottonwood, Deloitte Fast Ventures, DTCP, EIT, Elisa, Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship, EY, FinTech & Security, Accelerator, Founders+, Gemeente Rotterdam, Health Innovations, Healthvalley, Innovation Quarter, Intel Capital, Internet of Things Academy, JADS, KEEN Venture Partners, KvPlus, Másmóvil, Matchmaker Ventures, Microsoft, Mind the Bridge, NOS, Orange Digital Ventures, Philips Innovation Awards, PortXL Accelerator, Rockstart Digital Health Accelerator, Rotterdam Venture Café, RTL Ventures, Salesforce, School for Data Science, StartupBootcamp Smart City & Living Accelerator, StartupDelta, Sustainable Healthcare Challenge, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Tekdelta, Telefonica, Telefonica Open Future, Telenor, The Hague Security Delta, The International Investors Network, Tilburg Universiteit, Turkcell, Twente, The Hague Security Delta (HSD), UtrechtInc, VCC, Volta, Wayra, World Startup Factory Connectivity Accelerator en YES!Delft incubator.


Corporate Startup Star

That we enjoy and work well in our collaborations with startups is also evidenced from the fact that KPN has been named 'Corporate Startup Star' for the fifth time in a row in 2022, which shows recognition from the startup community for the way in which we collaborate with young and innovative European startups and scaleups.

The Corporate Startup Star awards, organized by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Mind the Bridge, aim to recognize the world’s most active corporates in working with startups. Startups have been asked to nominate the most active corporates in open innovation. In total, 25 companies from all over the world have been awarded as Corporate Startup Stars.


For Retail, we’re always seeking innovative solutions that prove the added value of physical stores. We want to be there for our customers in a variety of ways.

In terms of our physical stores (consumers and SME), we’re currently looking specifically at ways to increase the stopping power of the stores and future-proofing store processes and operations.

Do you have what we are looking for and can you offer a proven solution with paying customers? If so, don’t hesitate to contact us at kpnscaleups@kpn.com


In our ambition as KPN to be an even more sustainable telecom operator, we are looking for tech companies that:

  • can play a pivotal role in finding innovative ways to generate energy in relation to the mobile grid. Consider, for instance, circular solar panels, wind generation and alternatives to gas and diesel that fit a mobile siding;
  • provide solutions for sustainable emergency power solutions for our buildings and technical facilities;
  • can increase the biodiversity around our buildings (this can be in or on the building and our assets, such as junction boxes, or on the site);
  • can help us find smart solutions for energy trading and smart energy procurement;
  • have a smart battery solution to cope with peaks and troughs in energy demand by storing and using energy intelligently.

We are looking for partners who already have paying customers and preferably reference cases. Do you have what we are looking for? If so, do contact us at kpnscaleups@kpn.com

Networks & IT Infrastructure

At Networks & IT Infrastructure, we’re striving to help KPN make progress through innovation. To make this possible, we’re looking for innovative parties that:

  • specialize in Self-Organizing Networks (SON) to simplify, optimize, and automate the current KPN (radio) infrastructure;
  • specialize in making a fixed network more energy efficient;
  • specialize in generative AI solutions to improve KPN’s network (fixed and mobile);
  • provide fiber-to-the-room solutions;
  • operate in the Metaverse market, with both metaverse-ready infrastructure and services that run on this infrastructure to generate income;
  • have customer cases in conjunction with an Edge solution.

We are seeking proven scale-ups with paying customers who fit the high-quality criteria that we offer our customers. After all, the KPN network is crucial for communication in the Netherlands. Are you who we’re looking for? If so, don’t hesitate to contact us at kpnscaleups@kpn.com


KPN Online is looking for innovative solutions that facilitate digital transformation. At present, online performance is often optimized manually. We are convinced, however, that the future lies in automating our online performance using advanced AI tools.

We are looking for tools aimed at increasing our website conversion rate or identifying potential areas of improvement on our website.

Do you have the perfect AI tool that can help us improve our online performance and do you already have paying customers? Together, we can build a successful future in the digital world. If so, contact us at kpnscaleups@kpn.com

SME Platform

KPN has a solid footprint in the SME market through its own stores, kpn.com, call centers and 1,800 business partners. To capitalize on that distribution power, we are looking for fully digital telecom services partners with proven traction in the areas of

  1. IoT
  2. Cybersecurity
  3. Device management tools (need for remote relief, monitoring and control)
  4. Hardware as a Service
  5. CRM/ERP applications
  6. Payment solutions
  7. Various IT services (in the areas of monitoring and awareness)
  8. GDPR compliance tools
  9. Sustainability monitoring.

If your service meets the criteria below, you can take advantage of opportunities to present your offer to the SME market through KPN's distribution channel. Contact us at kpnscaleups@kpn.com

  • fits within one of the 9 themes;
  • is aimed at SMEs;
  • is fully digital and can be digitally onboarded;
  • already has paying customers;
  • is easily scalable.

KPN Ventures

Investing in entrepreneurial talent