About us

The Innofest team connects start-ups and their innovations, including the corresponding test questions, to the right living labs and partners

We have a proven track record: since our founding in 2016, we have been able to help over 200 entrepreneurs bring their innovation to market quickly.

Our team

Team Innofest

Linda Vermaat
Captains the ship
Linda is inspired by people who question the status quo and take action. Her search for these people has led to co-founding the Slow Food Youth Network, Professional Rebel and TwentieFour. Within her current position at Innofest, she knows how to empower team members, establish partnerships and spot (new) business opportunities. Under her leadership, Innofest has spread throughout the country. In addition to the Northern Dutch provinces, Innofest now has tested in Utrecht, Overijssel, The Hague and Noord Brabant.
Christiaan Glerum
Pushes forward
Chris can rightfully call himself a validation expert. During his many years as an entrepreneur, innovation adviser and fuck-up organizer, he has helped organizations of all sizes apply their innovations. With an above-average interest in technology, sustainability and health, he helps entrepreneurs after the pilot by connecting them to the right partners and uses his knowledge to also take Innofest to the next level.
Wander Wouda
Wander has worked as a creative producer, music programmer and project manager for the past eight years. He likes to be of service and gets excited when he can help entrepreneurs make the "impossible" possible. He says he likes to support other creatives, but is actually one of the most creative members of our the team. With his creative mind and persistence he produces always makes sure the tests run smoothly.
Benthe Valk
Clarifies operations
Benthe loves to keep order. She likes to organize and plan everything to perfection. After founding her own social business LUST, her love and passion for entrepreneurship and innovation grew. Since then, she believes social entrepreneurship is the norm. As a project assistant she makes sure everyone's job is stress-free so they are able to help the entrepreneurs as best as they can.
Lika Verploegen
Tells the story
As an intersectional feminist, Lika loves making stories about people that try to make the world a fairer place. Lika is a Dutch language graduate, content creator and SFYN-alumni. She also has several years of experience in producing and directing videos. At Innofest, she is responsible for all communications surrounding the festivals.
Frouke Engels
Helps the entrepreneurs
Frouke gets excited by startups that offer surprising solutions to social and ecological issues. As a designer, she has seen many prototypes and knows better than anyone how testing can contribute to successful business. At Innofest, she helps participants validate, make strategic choices and prepares them for their test during the workshops. In addition to mentoring, she scouts impact-driven startups.
Elisha Weeber
Clarifies operations and scouts innovations
As a former entrepreneur, Elisha has experienced the importance of validating your prototype and wants to use her own experience to help other startups move forward. Her own company focused on reducing plastic consumption, but she has a broad interest in sustainability. At Innofest, she is active as Project Lead and Startup Scout and hopes to meet many inspiring sustainable entrepreneurs.
Marjolein Koornstra
Manages our social media
Marjolein is responsible for social media, the website and communications around recruiting innovations. In recent years, she worked at several NGOs and then started working as a freelance communications and marketing consultant.
Rob van Wegen
Scouts innovations
Rob has years of experience as a producer at Innofest, but also at Into The Great Wide Open, IDFA, Liberation Festival Utrecht, IFFR and NFF. He now gives the entrepreneurs personal guidance both in the run-up to and during the test. This way the entrepreneurs get endless relevant data and know how to use it to improve their product or service. Rob also co-developed the Innofest testing method.
Friso Visser
Writes the method
By day, the enthusiastic critic Friso is a communication strategist and by night, he is the innovation enabler. Because he often collaborates with education partners both by choice and by accident, he is the right person to scour the education sector for innovations to bring to the festivals. Friso also co-developed the Innofest testing method.
Mélanie Kamping
Scouts innovations
If you are a northern Dutch innovator, partner or accelerator, chances are you will get Mélanie on the line. She was born in Drenthe, graduated in Groningen and has roots in Friesland, with the result that Mélanie feels like a fish in the water in all provinces and always knows how to find the right person.
Jurre Plantinga
Writes it down
As a former journalist and communication adviser, Jurre has a nose for stories. At Innofest, he is responsible for finding and writing the right stories, both for the press and our support base. In this role, he is also involved in the media strategy and approach.


Anna van Nunen
CCO Greener
Bianca Pander
Partner BKB | The Campaign bureau | founder Welcome to The Village
Ferry Roseboom
Founder Excelsior Recordings + proud member of team Into The Great Wide Open
Dago Houben
Managing director Eurosonic Noorderslag
Sjoerd Bootsma
Artistic director LF2028 | Artistic leader Welcome to The Village

Members of the supervisory board

Anne-Wil Lucas

Director Kennispark Twente

Anneke Sipkens

Former director Stichting DOEN

Frederik van Droffelaar

Head of Growth at Oedipus Brewing

Arnout de la Houssaye

Director Into the Great Wide Open

Ilse van Ast

Lawyer (partner) Bosma | Van Ast vastgoedadvocaten


of Innofest

Innofest wouldn't be Innofest without its partners. Together, we help expedite the evolution of over 30 innovations from prototype to ready-to-market products or services every year. This is how we contribute to a healthy entrepreneurial climate.

Program partners

Friends of Innofest

EFRO Financers

Website by HOAX Amsterdam