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venture-building studio


MISSION42 is our venture-building studio.
We are building our next TradeTech startups from the ground up by enabling entrepreneurial minds and innovators like you do what you do best!

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Build your team
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9 months
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Work from anywhere in the EU27
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Pitch your startup
MISSION42 team day June 7, 2023 in Brussels. From left to right, Greg, Frederik, Afonso, Ricardo, Meaghan, and Adalberto. Lode and Saskia not pictured.

MISSION42: Why and how?

We fulfil AREA42's purpose by accelerating four TradeTech ventures. From idea to MVP, let's build the blueprint for a scaleup.

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Cohorts of entrepreneurial duos across the EU27

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Customer-centric approach to building, validating, and launch startups

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Tenured coaching

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Managed remotely from Brussels

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Competitive compensation package.

About AREA42

We are innovators making trade future-proof. We disrupt B2B commerce and trade with innovations in trade technology. Learn more about AREA42.

#innovators #tradetech  #accelerator #venturebuilding #startups #SME

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Afonso tells you about MISSION42

Afonso, our Lean Startup Coach, describes the vision of MISSION42.

Afonso discusses compensation and what happens after MISSION42.

Afonso announces that we are still recruiting! We've got some spaces for a June/July round of applicants!


Are you a resilient and relentless doer with ambition to build a game-changing TradeTech venture?

Our ideal candidates clearly express key motivations for joining the programme, highlight entrepreneurial initiatives, and demonstrate useful skills for venture building.

During your MISSION42 journey, you'll focus on what it takes to create a successful startup. Identifying and validating a need and market, preparing a business plan, meeting weekly milestones and coaching challenges, creating a pitch for a new trade technology solution, and pitching it.

If your venture gets the go-ahead to scale up it will join the AREA42 portfolio of TradeTech solutions.

Read more about corporate startups.

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About you in 5 points


You may be a blank slate or have some entrepreneurial experience when it comes to the SME market or solutions based on trade technology. You’ve tried to make money before, from a lemonade stand to a tested business idea, so you know how to offer solutions that truly address a measurable need.
--> Learn more about TradeTech here.


You’re a doer with a love for learning. This is essential as MISSION42 is a development process coached by tenured entrepreneurs. You will identify your insight and validate it during your journey.


You can dedicate 9 months full time to reach a go or no-go defining moment for your startup. You’ll also be spending one day per month in Brussels with the venture building team. We use a rolling application process, so there will be more opportunities to join beyond the current application round.


You can work with a full-time partner. Bring your co-pilot or let us team you up with one. But remember - this is a joint effort and complementary skills will be key!


You both can legally invoice from an EU27 country. This means you and your co-pilot must each have a VAT number or be willing, able, and eligible for one in any of these countries:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, or Sweden.


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Apply online
FEB 2024
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Interview scheduling
FEB 2024
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1st round interviews
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2nd round interviews
MARch/APRIL 2024
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Final selection
MARCH/April 2024
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Get started
FROM April 2024

What you need to apply

It only takes 20 minutes to apply. Submit your applications individually or as a team. Your journey into trade technology and innovation begins here!

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Email addresses

Each team member's email needs to be included in the application form. The one filling out the form needs to use a gmail address.

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An updated CV for each applicant

Have these handy! And yes, you’ll be able to upload them together in the same application form.

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Our online application form

We’ve made it as simple and straightforward as possible. We can't wait to receive your submissions.

Apply now ->

You're in good company

Meet some of your future MISSION42 team members

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Lode Vermeersch
General management
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Frederik Simoen
Innovation & Strategy Manager
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Afonso R. de Sousa
Lean Startup Coach
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Gregory Gobel
Marketing & Content Lead
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Saskia Buntinx
Office & Talent Manager
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Karel Vanderheyden
Business Development Coach
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Adalberto Rodrigues
Venture Builder
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Meaghan Johnson
Venture Builder
Ricardo Cardoso Venture Builder MISSION42
Ricardo Cardoso
Venture Builder


Questions? We've got answers.

I have no experience in trade, B2B, or SMEs -  can I apply?
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The criteria here is whether or not you are or want to know what it’s like to be an entrepreneur and can build a solution customers pay for. Experience in trade, B2B or working for / with SMEs are not required. But if you have some already, that's great, too!

Apply now  ->
I’m a graduate, do I qualify?
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Absolutely. By the way we are a gender and age-neutral company. Anyone is welcome to apply as long as they are ready to work and capable of invoicing in the EU.

Apply now  ->
I am not an EU national but live legally in the EU, can I apply?
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It’s ok as long as you, as a non-EU passport holder, has legal residency in an EU country and a VAT number from an EU member country.

Apply now  ->
What if I already have a venture in trade I want to accelerate?
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That’s excellent! Sounds like you are already a venture-builder and you should go for it but MISSION42 is not be the right place for you. For MISSION42 we are looking for individuals who can discover and craft their idea according to insights gathered during the acceleration phase. However, let's see if there is space to collaborate so get in touch with us via AREA42's programme for Founders.

I don’t have a co-pilot to work with me, can I still apply?
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Yes, you can. We’ll do our best to match you but chances are it’s way faster to onboard you when you apply as a team.

Apply now  ->
My co-pilot lives in a different town, can we apply?
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Working together daily and physical access to each other is strongly encouraged and it will greatly help your application. So as long as this other town means you can still work together daily, it’s ok.

Apply now  ->
What are the founder terms and conditions for startups built during the MISSION42 acceleration process?
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You are compensated for nine months to fulfil the mission of venture builder - with no limits to how you can disrupt the market. However, as a venture builder in MISSION42 you are doing so on behalf of AREA42 and for AREA42. That means there will not be any available equity at stake for founders. Nonetheless, if you wish to take this to the next level and grow the new business, AREA42 will match your ambition!

Apply now  ->
Will you pay for co-working space?
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No, we will not pay for co-working space but your compensation package can be used for that purpose. You’re welcome to visit our co-working space in Brussels on Mondays.

Apply now  ->
What kind of assets and platforms can I access?
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We have a few licensed tools such as OutSystems for development, but as an entrepreneur you are empowered to propose tools we may adopt to help you. By the way, we don’t provide laptops or other equipment so you'll need your own.

Apply now  ->
Where can I read about more benefits of joining a venture building studio?
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Any unanswered questions?

Hi, I'm Frederik. I can't wait to hear from you to explore and discuss MISSION42.

Schedule a call