Silke Tijkotte: ‘Let it Grow blossomed into vibrant innovation platform’21 December 2016
Let it Grow began as a small seedling of an idea, planted by Let it Grow Silke Tijkotte. Over the past year, she has seen this idea grow and blossom into a vibrant platform which breathes new life into the floriculture industry and has become a source of inspiration for people to welcome more greenery into their urban lives. She takes a look back on the year 2016 and tells us a bit about what’s in store for Let it Grow.
"Looking back over the year, I can only smile", says Silke Tijkotte. "We started with an idea, which has grown into a vibrant home for green businesses, an Incubation Programme for entrepreneurs, and a beautiful online magazine. We had set goals for Let it Grow at the beginning of the year and we have surpassed all of them. When we started in January, I felt that the time was right: that entrepreneurs and the floriculture sector were ready for Let it Grow. And I was right! People in the sector are enthusiastic about what we're doing, and many platforms around the world want to write what we're doing for plant and flower innovation and the Dutch startup scene."
"The highlights of 2016 were definitely the four Let it Grow milestones: From the opening of the Innovation Call on May 10th, to Roef festival. With over 100 entrepreneurs, who applied for our five month incubation programme at the Let it Grow Lab, at a sunny Amsterdam rooftop. And then there was the Selection Day on September 23rd - I was so proud that 21 selected teams pitched their ideas to a panel of professionals. And finally, Prince Constantijn of Orange and the CEO of Royal FloraHolland Lucas Vos opened the Let it Grow Lab on October 24th."
Silke Tijkotte (founder of Let it Grow)
Accessible to the city
"Looking to 2017, our 'New Year's Resolution' will be to build more partnerships, may it be within the floriculture sector, the government, or technology companies. I also hope to collaborate with knowledge institutes and universities so that we can help translate the incredible scientific research they're carrying out to make plants and flowers accessible and more valuable to everyone in cities."
Festival of green
"The main event for Let it Grow in 2017 will be the Demo Day on March 21st. We have plans for it to be a festival celebrating all things green, but it will also one of the most important days for Let it Grow Lab's start-ups as they present their businesses and products, and showcase the work they have done in the Incubation Programme over the past five months.
Welcoming innovative ideas
"I'm incredibly proud of the team and all we have achieved together this year. And I would like to thank the members of Royal FloraHolland, our partners and everyone in the floriculture sector who worked with us challenged us and provided us with useful feedback." Silke concludes. "In 2017 we will continue contributing to increasing (European) consumer demand for plants and flowers with green innovations. To all our readers, take care of yourselves and keep on connecting yourself to innovative ideas outside the sector. I can't wait to take you all on new green adventures in the new year!"
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