Unit, Innovation Financing

Living in a digitally connected world with constantly shorter innovation cycles as well as demographic and ecologic change processes means solution orientation and innovation ability are of great importance for social well-being.

But how does a good idea turn into a promising innovation, product or service? How does an innovator find out if his/her invention is of practical relevance once the initial public project funding has finished? How can various stakeholders indicate at an early stage that they are convinced by a project? It is very often the case that especially socially relevant ideas have suffered from a lack of financing options until today.

The Innovation Financing group at Fraunhofer IMW provides innovators with a platform and enables them to validate their ideas on the market and to finance them. Therefore we research and pilot alternative instruments for financing innovation processes for our customers such as the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, public sponsors, state banks and foundations. This especially comprises the topics of “financing innovation” (e.g. crowdfunding, crowdinvesting) and “innovation in the finance sector” (e.g. distributed ledger technologies, Blockchain).

Moreover, we represent the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft within the European Crowdfunding Network (ECN), the ECN working group “Exploring Blockchain for Alternative Finance”, the FGF expert group “Entrepreneurial and SME finance” as well as the Social Entrepreneurship Network (SEND).


Range of Services

  • Research alternative financing instruments and methods of participation
  • Test contemporary forms of participation with actors from the financing sector, science and society
  • Enable innovators to finance their projects
  • Transfer knowledge into practical use


“You don’t only have to have more ideas than others, you also need the ability to decide, which of these ideas are good“ 

[Linus Pauling]


Current Events

Meet us:

06/18/2020: Digital presentation at the “ACM Collective Intelligence Conference 2020“ by Marie-Luise Kanbach and Dr. Norman Bedtke

05/05/2020: Digital presentation on the topic of Blockchain for the Energieforen Leipzig by Erik Ackermann



ACM Collective Intelligence 2020 Virtual Conference

Conference contribution by Marie-Luise Kanbach:

“The growing phenomenon of crowdsourcing in non profit, scientific environments - Understanding objectives and design configurations”

Watch video (on YouTube)

More events and news

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Crowdfunding-Campaign “Bike&Chill”

Kommunales Crowdfunding im Freistaat Sachsen. Neue Wege in der Finanzierung kommunaler Projekte (in German)
Crowdfunding und Kreditfinanzierung: Ein zukunftsfähiges Co-Finanzierungsmodell? (in German)
Democratising Entrepreneurial Finance: The Impact of Crowdfunding and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs)