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Student entrepreneurs are youths who start or already have their own business during their studies. The Dutch government encourages initiatives that ensure that students are able to combine their studies with building a successful business. For example, it should be possible for an entrepreneurial student to graduate while running their own business. You can approach the Centre of Entrepreneurship of your university of applied sciences or university for practical assistance and support.
In general, the rules and regulations of the Dutch government that you will have to deal with as a (starting) student entrepreneur are often the same as for other entrepreneurs. Students may receive (partially) reduced study grants and loans. They can also use government schemes that are meant to stimulate entrepreneurship as an entrepreneurial student.
Checklist for entrepreneurs who wish to start a business in the Netherlands.
You must be granted limited legal capacity from a subdistrict court to be able to perform legal acts as an underage business owner.
Students who began their degree since September 2015 do not receive a grant and may earn unlimited amounts. Students who began before then may receive a reduced grant and loan depending on whether their earnings exceed a certain limit.
Subsidies and tax schemes
As a young entrepreneur, you will be given the opportunity to work temporarily at the SME of an experienced entrepreneur in another EU country.
If you run a small business, you may be eligible to participate in the small businesses scheme, as part of which you will be exempt from paying turnover tax (VAT).
This is deducted from the profits so that the entrepreneur pays less tax. The entrepreneur’s allowance consists of, for example, a private business ownership allowance and tax relief for new companies.
If you have a business in the Netherlands and employ no more than 250 workers, you may be eligible for a guarantee for part of a loan, which will enable you to borrow more than would otherwise be possible based on your collateral.
The microcredit facility is available for (start-up) businesses in need of a loan or guidance. This scheme consists of a business loan and coaching.
Students with a long-term occupational disability may be eligible to receive support in establishing their own business.
The following organisations promote the interests of student entrepreneurs. You can contact them for more information. Please note: these websites are all in Dutch.
- Overview of knowledge centres, centres of entrepreneurship, centres of valorisation at your university
- Stichting Jong Ondernemen
- Jong & Ondernemer (Facebook community)
- JongZakelijk Nederland
- Young Startup
Statistics: student entrepreneurs
Number of people aged 15 to 25 years following formal education who are self-employed professionals.