Innovate in Portugal


We Nurture Innovative New Portuguese Businesses
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Through partnerships with key actors, including public bodies and top tier research facilities, Empowered Startups accelerates and incubates innovative international business ideas.

We work with driven entrepreneurial professionals to create outstanding startups with the potential to grow from concept to success in 3 to 5 countries within 5 years, launched from a strong base in Portugal.

The start up ecosystem in Portugal is a high-potential marketplace driven by keen collaborators. The climate is business-friendly, knowledge workers are readily available, and key actors are committed to success.

As a gateway to continental Europe, with strong ties to Asia, Africa and South America, it is a smart launch pad for businesses with the potential for international expansion.

Highly Qualified Activity (HQA) business incubation 

Designed specifically for accomplished transnational business professionals, the HQA program represents a partnership between Empowered Startups and top tier research facilities in Portugal.


Empowered Startups Platform (ESP) 

Our proprietary entrepreneurship training and virtual incubation platform, ESP, is in use in partner incubators and research facilities in Portugal, France, and Canada.




West: Leiria 

Our incubator on the West coast, just an hour north of Lisbon, offers ready access to ground-breaking work in sea basin technologies, through the Politecnic of Leiria.

Northeast: Bragança

Our northern Portugal location is within a research facility that houses dedicated teams of researchers to support innovative r&d in several areas, including mecatronics, agri-tech, and nano-manufacturing.

University of Evora
Center: Évora 

Our incubator in the central region, an hour east of Lisbon, is connected to 4 regional research institutions through the 450-year-old University of Évora, offering state-of-the art expertise in aeronautics and Industry 4.0 solutions.

South: Faro 

Our incubator in the Algarve region, on the southern coast of Portugal, is well-connected to the thriving pan-Mediterranean innovation community through the University of the Algarve.

Using our proven and powerful methodology, network, market insight and business expertise, we guide entrepreneurs on a path to successfully start a business in Portugal.

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Become the Best

We educate and empower founders to build market offers and business models that empower their ideas to become the best in the world. We guide them through the rigours of Lean StartUp and Horizon Methodology, and cycle through the validated learning process of build-measure-learn.

Connect with the Best

We select entrepreneurs from around the world with the best innovative and scalable concepts to startup in Portugal, with international reach. We are skilled at assisting entrepreneurs in de-risking their projects, increasing their speed to market, and enhancing the overall prosperity of the Portuguese ecosystem they are entering.

Sell Internationally

We build startups that define and aggressively pursue revenue goals on this equation: My startup will sell $X of Y product to customers A, B, C in N number of countries in M number of months.


Our valued partnerships provide transnational entrepreneurs with opportunities to deepen the foundations and extend the reach of their ventures.

Our partnership with the Politecnic of Leiria offers entrepreneurs access to innovative research in sea basin technologies.

Our partnership with the University of Évora provides entrepreneurs with access to state-of-the-art expertise in Industry 4.0 solutions.

University of Évora

Our partnership with BEP provides start ups with ready access to top tier researchers, according to their business needs.

Our partnership with the University of the Algarve provides entrepreneurs with access to pan-Mediterranean collaboration opportunities.


Empowered Startups Opens New Office in Evora Portugal

Empowered Startups Opens New Office in Evora Portugal

Evora, Portugal –International business incubator Empowered Startups announced today the opening of its new office in Evora, Portugal. As the leading provider of business incubation for Canada Startup Visa participants, and a cornerstone of Portugal's HQA Visa...

Yes, The HQA Visa Is A Top Reason Entrepreneurs Are Moving to Portugal

Yes, The HQA Visa Is A Top Reason Entrepreneurs Are Moving to Portugal

Believe it or not, Europe's westernmost country isn't just a hot tourist destination. It's becoming a hot bed of activity for startups and entrepreneurs looking to found new businesses in the European Union.  A recent report from Startup Europe Partnership, found...


The following professionals generously offer their perspectives on our plans. We are grateful for the influence they continue to have on our projects.



Executive Director, STARTUP LAB – SRS Advogados




Director , CRIA – University of the Algarve




Entrepreneurship & Investments Officer, Brigantia-EcoPark