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04 January 2023·14 min read

Katarzyna Groszkowska

Editor, Vestbee

Best Startup Accelerators And Incubators In The Western Balkans

The Western Balkans is a region that keeps growing in importance in the startup and VC ecosystem, with more and more interesting projects and promising solutions being implemented there. Even though the economic conditions in this part of Europe, as well as the capital markets and startup climate, are lacking, in recent years there has definitely been an influx in regional activities.

We have already covered the most important VC funds operating in the region, as well as singled out some of the most interesting startups to watch. Now the time has come to examine the initiatives that fuel the entrepreneurial spirit in the Balkans and provide young entrepreneurs with growth opportunities - accelerators and incubators.

So without further ado, let’s dig deeper into the startup ecosystem in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia!


Countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia

RISE stands for Regional Incubator For Social Entrepreneurship. It is a Western Balkans project funded by the French Development Agency (AFD), the European Union, and the Regional Youth Cooperation Office for the Balkans (RYCO) in order to support regional entrepreneurs who develop solutions with a social impact. It aims to open new spaces of reconciliation for the youth of the Western Balkans, increase the number of cross-border interactions, and develop the capacity of local RISE incubators, located in all WB countries.

Yunus Social Business Balkans

Countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia

Yunus Social Business Balkans is an initiative focused on giving new entrepreneurs the right skills and tools to grow new startups in the Western Balkan region, positively impacting the lives of its communities. It is headquartered in Tirana and was first established to use the power of business in order to solve social problems and serve humanity. YSB uses many programs and approaches to implement its strategy, which includes social entrepreneurship awareness campaigns, incubators and accelerators, investment readiness programs, facilitating access to financing for social and impact-oriented startups, and providing coaching and mentoring opportunities. So far, more than 450 startups have been supported by incubation, acceleration & business development services of YSB.

Elevator Lab

Countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Serbia

Elevator Lab, powered by the Raiffeisen Bank, is the largest fintech network in CEE, connecting 13 countries, created with the aim to provide growth opportunities for leading-edge fintech startups developing financial services of modern banking. The many services offered by the program include guidance in developing MVPs, pitching, networking, learning about various methodologies such as lean canvas, and receiving cash prizes as well as invitations to become a part of the RBI group, an IT services provider from Raiffeisen Bank.

Metropolitan Incubator

Country: Albania

Metropolitan Incubator is the first Albanian university-based incubator that supports the successful development of businesses, influencing regional economic development. It offers a variety of services, which include mentoring, technical support and academic advice, co-working space, as well as access to various funding programs. Moreover, the company also runs acceleration and mentorship programs for startups, preparing them for entering the market and scaling.


Country: Albania

Ofiçina is a strategic initiative focused on supporting Albania’s transition to a knowledge-based economy. In order to do so, it runs yearly incubation and acceleration programs and actively participates in various EU-funded projects covering cross-sectoral innovation and strategic SME development. Ofiçina also offers its startups coworking spaces, access to technical infrastructure, mentorship services, and on top of that holds sector-oriented events and cooperates with other players from the European startup scene.

Women Founders Network Albania

Country: Albania

Women Founders Network Albania is a project implemented to support female entrepreneurship in Albania by bringing together a community of women entrepreneurs and aspiring founders. The foundation contributes to reducing the disproportion between the number of male and female founders not only by organizing tailored events but also by running a first acceleration program, which is directed exclusively to women. It follows its principles to make sure that the startup ecosystem is equally accessible to both men and women and in order to achieve that, organizes networking events, thematic workshops, individual mentoring, platforms dedicated to knowledge transfer, and more.

Fondacija 787

Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

Fondacija 787 is an active entity on the Bosnian business landscape, addressing the needs of females and young people in the country. It is specifically aimed to help improve the disadvantaged position of women, empower them, foster the entrepreneurial spirit and improve their quality of life and impact on society. It does so through a number of different projects such as holistic entrepreneurial programs and capacity-building training which equip women and youth with the necessary knowledge, skills, and attitudes. These programs are organized around topics such as startup creation using lean methodology, financial literacy, trade readiness or social entrepreneurship. Among them, there is a Business Workout program, aimed to support startups led by young people in order to realize steady growth and sustainability.

Fondacija Mozaik

Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

Fondacija Mozaik is a Bosnian social business incubator that focuses on identifying, facilitating, and accelerating the development of young leaders in the region. Startup Studio Program is one of its leading initiatives, which provides startups with microgrants, business services, and mentorships. Emerging startups can benefit from a vibrant support network, access to various partners, and legal, marketing, sales, management, innovation, and intellectual property assistance. Moreover, another arm of the foundation is impact investing, which funds value-driven, innovative social startups.

IBU Incubator

Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

IBU Incubator helps university and high-school students to become successful entrepreneurs by offering a wide range of programs and projects. IBU stands for Internation Burch University, and for its students, the incubator provides access to an extensive mentor network, a coworking space, funding, co-funding, legal and financial support, and more. Students from other Bosnian universities can also get help from the incubator; however, they need to have at least one student from IBU. As for the high schoolers, IBU offers a gamified entrepreneurship program that has operated every December for 6 years. Students improve decision-making skills, engage in business-related activities, and interact with successful entrepreneurs.

Innovation Centre Banja Luka

Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

As a training centre and a business incubator, the Innovation Centre Banja Luka supports and develops Bosnian job creation and entrepreneurship. The centre cooperates with various experts and consultants and offers internships for university students. In addition, ICBL provides lifelong learning opportunities through local and international training courses, seminars, and workshops in the fields of business, computer science, and computer engineering. Furthermore, the centre provides business development services, professional and market-oriented consulting, and collaborates with accredited companies, educational institutions, and experts in business and academia.

Ministry of Programming

Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

Ministry of Programming is a development, investment, and software design company and a startup studio, working with startups. Among its services are product and marketing strategies, software MVP development and other tech solutions, and UX and UI design. Currently, MoP has developed search engines, social networks, crypto trading systems, mobile apps, and more.

Innovation Centre Kosovo

Country: Kosovo

The Innovation Centre Kosovo aims to connect the scientific field with the business sector, creating new opportunities based on modern knowledge and technology. It supports both emerging entrepreneurs with inventive ideas and established, growth-oriented companies through pre-incubation and incubation services, mentoring, consulting, training, and more. Kosovar's startups can benefit from guidance in the fields of product development, marketing, business plan creation, and market-oriented consultancy, as well as access to modern office facilities and local and international networks.

Jakova Innovation Center

Country: Kosovo

Established by the Ministry of Trade of Kosovo in cooperation with the municipality of Gjakovam, the Jakova Innovation Center supports young entrepreneurs on their path toward business growth. It provides them with coworking spaces and offers consulting and training programs in finance, marketing, business management, market research, and more. Jakova Innovation Center collaborates with local and international institutions and companies that assist young founders during the incubation period. In addition, the centre conducts various projects in partnership with local and foreign firms.

Tech Boost Program

Country: Kosovo

The Tech Boost Program is one of the many interesting initiatives proposed by the above-mentioned ICK. It is a pre-acceleration, 10-week program created in collaboration with Startup Wise Guys to empower early-stage tech entrepreneurs with the knowledge and experience to allow them to take their businesses to the next level. So far, two Tech Boost pre-accelerators have been successfully implemented in the Western Balkans.


Country: Kosovo

VentureUP is the Entrepreneurship & Innovation Center as well as the official Incubator of the University of Prishtina, which serves as a bridge between education and industry for young Kosovars. It helps students develop startup ideas through coaching and mentoring with industry experts and VentureUp staff. Additionally, it opens access to financial and educational resources, the latter of which is provided during personal development workshops and training.


Country: Montenegro

The startup accelerator DigitalDen has been created to help startups scale through extensive tech support, mentoring, funding, and training. It is a part of the Montenegrin Tech and Startup Bridge (MTSB) program, developed in cooperation with the US State Department. Western Balkan startups can participate in the program to present their ideas and projects to investors and VC funds in the US and collaborate with  American ecosystem stakeholders, such as accelerators, incubators, research centres, and universities.

Country: Montenegro is a digital startup community-based in Montenegro that aims to empower individuals and organizations and help identify new and exciting opportunities around social change and business in the digital space. It has successfully implemented a number of projects, which include networking opportunities and events, as well as social media marketing training. It is also one of the organizers of - one of the biggest business conferences in the South-East European region. A key element of the annual conference is a startup competition, which allows regional startups to receive recognition, explore business opportunities, and pitch in front of well-recognized investors.

Accelerate 2030

Country: North Macedonia

Accelerate 2030 is a global scaling program that connects entrepreneurship and the SDGs and is present in many countries across the globe - North Macedonia being one of them. It's a three-month-long acceleration program coordinated by Seavus Accelerator and Business Impact Lab, where capacity building is combined with networking and matchmaking opportunities with the broader private and public sectors. The project aims to identify the most innovative startups from North Macedonia that tackle sustainability issues, help them implement scaling strategies, and make crucial global connections among the UN community.

Business Accelerator UKIM (BAU)

Country: North Macedonia

Business Accelerator UKIM (BAU) is a business-tech accelerator supporting the growth of the most promising technology entrepreneurs, startups, spin-offs, and scale-ups in Macedonia. It offers a comprehensive set of services which include financing, mentoring, providing access to international markets and business networks as well as fundraising and business development support. In addition, it aims to connect startups and entrepreneurs with the global ecosystem by giving young entrepreneurs a leg up in winning partnerships, customers, and investors.

CEED Hub Skopje

Country: North Macedonia

CEED Hub Skopje is a business community that boosts startups’ growth, inspires idea generation, and fosters local innovation through education, resources, and business solutions. It offers coworking space, hosts themed events, develops business programs, and has a CEED Hub Club for networking. Apart from startups and entrepreneurs, the firm works with creative, corporate, and tech professionals, freelancers, and students. On top of that, CEED Hub provides financial help and organizes pitching events in front of Business Angels from the CEED Business Angles Club.

Seavus Accelerator

Country: North Macedonia

Seavus Accelerator is an active player in the Macedonian startup community, which intends to create an enabling and stimulating environment for start-up growth at all stages of development. It provides continuous, high-quality acceleration and investment support. The program's beneficiaries can count on receiving unique learning opportunities, a guided path towards reaching critical milestones (such as getting a customer fraction), as well as an opportunity to develop necessary skills for networking and funding activities. The accelerator targets early-stage tech companies with a developed prototype and a minimum of two cofounders on the founding team.


Country: North Macedonia

Located on the South East European University campus, SEEUTechPark aims to promote startup development and create synergies between regional companies to stimulate SME growth. The centre offers high-quality coworking space, professional consulting, training, and mentoring, as well as access to its vast local and international network. The company supports businesses operating in tech, computer software, telecommunications, eBusiness, eCommerce, media, wireless technology, services, and computer hardware.


Country: Serbia

ICT Hub is a comprehensive growth engine that supports Serbian startups on many fronts. It offers business transformation, funding, partnerships, and access to its creative workspace through services such as business consultancy, project development, and investment vehicles. All of this is done to support the broad growth of the regional startup ecosystem and ensure innovative companies can gain the knowledge, funds, and connections necessary for success.

Impact Hub Belgrade

Country: Serbia

Impact Hub Belgrade brings together the key stakeholders of the Serbian startup ecosystem - aspiring entrepreneurs, early-stage startup founders, investors, potential business partners, and mentors. It runs a number of specific acceleration programs that ensure startups’ investment readiness and supports them from the earliest stages of growth. One of the Hub’s many programs is ClimAccelerator, conducted in partnership with EIT across five different CEE countries and focused on startups addressing climate change and environmental issues.

Katapult Akcelerator

Country: Serbia

Katapult Akcelerator is a leading acceleration program in Serbia that helps promising companies reach global markets and access funding. It has been launched by the Innovation Fund of the Republic of Serbia as a part of the Serbia Accelerating Innovation and Growth Entrepreneurship Project. It targets early-stage startups, helping them throughout all key milestones on their growth journey, from providing them access to an inspiring network of mentors and peers to matching them with the right investors.

Science Technology Park

Country: Serbia

Belgrade-based, Science Technology Park developed a Business Technology Incubator of Technical Faculties (BITF) is a pioneering business technology incubator, providing comprehensive support to young people in developing innovative ideas and starting their own businesses. It offers numerous opportunities for young innovators and students, linking them with the industry and supporting the inception of hi-tech, R&D-based startups. It provides them with mentorship, legal and administrative advice, networking access, and financial help.

Want to discover more accelerators and incubators from other countries? Check out the list below. 
Top Accelerators and Incubators from:

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