PowerUp your business and get your start-up to the next level!
On March 1st, the application period for PowerUp! by InnoEnergy – the fourth edition of the largest competition for start-ups from the cleantech sector in Central Europe – begins. The competition creates a great opportunity for business development and establishing a presence on the international market.
In addition to financial prizes, the winners of the competition may look forward to a chance to participate in the prestigious Highway® by InnoEnergy programme which converts ideas and designs into market reality. It offers beginner entrepreneurs financing up to an amount of 150 thousand euros and wide-ranging support in the fields of product development and protection, team building, access to international customers and external financing sources.
Since 2015 InnoEnergy's representative in Estonia is Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol and since then Estonian startups have been very successful in PowerUp competitions. "So far, two first places and one third have been brought to Estonia from the finals of Central and Eastern Europe," said Heleri Holm, the Manager of Innoenergy's Estonian HUB. "This shows that Estonian greentech startups are highly competitive at the European level."
Jakub Miler, the CEO of InnoEnergy Central Europe, explains that the factor which distinguishes PowerUp! among other competitions is not only the extensive experience of the organizers but, most notably, their business-oriented approach: "We are trying to point out solutions and open doors – InnoEnergy is a leading Cleantech accelerator, the success of which is a result of the fact that in addition to money, we also invest our knowledge and contacts. We are managing the largest innovation ecosystem in the world which is comprised of more than 320 members. They include leading power companies in Europe, academic and research centres, cities and regions. Our shareholders include such companies as Schneider Electric, EDF, AGH, RAFAKO or Tauron."
The organizer also underlines that mobility, cyber security, and energy storage solutions are particularly sought after on the energy market. The range of interest includes technologies that allow for a reduction of emissions of harmful substances into the atmosphere and those which combat smog. The winner of the previous edition was the Hungarian start-up, HeatVentors, which presented an innovative method of storing thermal energy that requires 90% less space and allows to save 20 to 40% of energy.
"Tapping the start-up community is an essential step to achieving one of the main goals of our 2030 strategy: to become the first choice of customers. We believe that partnering with InnoEnergy will help us become a vital part of the European innovation ecosystem and we are excited to work together on future projects" says Zsolt Winkler, Head of the Open Innovation Hub of the MOL Group, the partner of the last year's edition of the competition.
The grand finale of the PowerUp! competition in Prague and more than ten country-wide finals will be preceded by Bootcamps. These unique workshops with the best European business mentors provide the opportunity to verify one's business model and polish the presentation skills of the participants.
In order to participate in the competition, you need to have a product prototype, a team, and fill in a form which is available at the competition website, www.powerup.innoenergy.com, until April 15th. The Estonian Finals take place in May.
InnoEnergy is the innovation engine for sustainable energy across Europe and is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol, who is organizing the Estonian Final, is the partner of InnoEnergy since 2015. The common goals are supporting development, sustainability and seed funding of innovative companies in Estonian energy sector.