Measure & manage impact & ESG performance of startups

To achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, we have to close an enormous investment gap of >$2.5 trillion per year (UNCTAD). More simplicity is needed to assess promising impact opportunities. We help corporates, investors, accelerators, investment intermediaries, foundations and public agencies to identify startups that are good for profits, people and the planet.

Our Mission

We develop impact intelligence solutions to assess, manage and improve the sustainability performance of startups, new business models and innovation.


We asses which startups matter and make them visible to supporters.


Insight Provider

We collect structured data and conduct AI-supported analytics


Decision Guide

We reveal SDG impact potentials and risks.


Our Approach

We combine human and artificial intelligence to simplify the assessment of business and sustainability potential of startups.

Human Intelligence

  • Assessment experience
  • Academic research
  • Proprietary assessment databases

Artificial Intelligence

  • Automated data collection
  • Natural language processing
  • Big data analytics

Impact evaluation based on findings from science and practice

(best of both worlds)


Transparency on our approach and methodology

(no AI blackbox)

Adaptability of our impact scoring to stakeholder preferences

(no “pseudo objectivity”)

Our Products

Impact Innovation Scouting

  • Clarification of search requirements
  • Targeted leads of impact startups & innovation through a staged selection process
  • Clear cooperation strategy 

Impact Potential Assessment

  • Assessment of the sustainability impact potential of startups
  • Benchmarking with a scientifically developed scoring model
  • Methodology aligned with best-practices like the Impact Management ProjectDIN SPEC 90051-1
  • Early identification of environmental and social risks


Impact Monitoring

  • Credible impact KPIs along the SDGs (based on international standards like IRIS+)
  • Support in monitoring / collecting impact measures
  • Tangible impact performance for investors and other stakeholders

Unleashing impact innovation

Our Background

ImpactNexus is an independent spin-off from the Borderstep Institute for Innovation and Sustainability gGmbH that builds on research at the Institute and the Technical University Berlin. The founding team has many years of practical experience in traditional business as well as impact driven organizations and their support ecosystem. We also conducted a wide range of academic research and hands-on projects on impact evaluation, SDG-mapping and the startup ecosystem.


Example projects our team members worked on:

  • Coordinated the development of a standard for the sustainability assessment of start-ups (DIN SPEC 90051with the German Institute for Standardization.
  • Supported the development of Germany’s largest network for green startups StartGreen’.
  • Evaluated hundreds of startups for the StartGreen Award’ hosted by Borderstep Institute and the German Ministry for the Environment.
  • Developed a manual to support investment decisions in sustainable startups together with the German Startup Association, the Business Angel Network Germany and the ‘Forum Nachhaltige Geldanlagen’
  • Developed the Lean Impact Measurement methodology and applied it with dozens of startups with organizations like the UNDP or Impact Hub
  • Published in peer reviewed journals on topics like sustainability assessments for startups or semi-automated approaches to map startups to the SDGs

Extensive network in the German startup ecosystem and beyond

Access to 1000+ comprehensive startup datasets

Many years of experience in the evaluation of impact startups

Our Team

Dr. Jannic Horne

Leads the overall venture development

Constanze Trautwein

Leads the scientific analysis and the product development

Alexander Schabel

Leads the business development and the customer discovery

Marie-Sophie Litz

Leads the technical product development

Oğuz Şerbetçi

Machine Learning Engineer

Our Supporters 

Our Advisors

ImpactNexus takes part in the StarTUp Incubation program

ImpactNexus takes part in the AWS Activate program

Prof. Dr. Klaus Fichter, Borderstep Institut, Universität Oldenburg

Prof. Dr. habil. Odej Kao, TU Berlin

ImpactNexus receives support via the EXIST program from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs the European Social Fund (ESF).


Interested in joining our growing team? See current job openings here:

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© ImpactNexus, 2020