The worldwide corporations bring challenges for deep-tech startups: together they will develop 50 important innovations
The world is going more technological faster than it ever has before. Last year’s pandemic changed nearly everyone’s habits – from education to deep-tech industries. The need for digital innovations, solutions of IoT and artificial intelligence have increased in daily life and different sectors of work. Scientists and business united their powers to make an impact around the globe extremely quick and created things we expected a few years later. This time corporations from Denmark, Spain, Poland, Estonia and Lithuania invite deep-tech startups to join the international virtual program Scale-up Champions and create smart solutions for the environment together.
“New technologies are really affecting all verticals and economic sectors in a transversal way. And there are certain technological advances that will have a deep impact on our society and that are the result of substantial technology changes. The Scale-up Champions initiative seeks these advances. Startups‘ solutions that can impact the society of the future. The main point of this international program is to find deep tech talents in Europe and match them with worldwide corporations who need innovative solutions for their fields”, says Carmen Adán, Scale-up Champions Start-up Corporate Collaboration program coordinator.
According to her, all selected teams will participate in a six-month-long program and get mentorship support from international experts. Carmen Adán is convinced that this program is one of the best ways to enter the international market for startups. This is a ‘win-win’ situation for a startup to get ‘know-how’ experience, essential connections in a new market and at the same time corporations can find novelties to disrupt their industry.
This year the program turns to seven fields of innovation: Industry 4.0, FinTech, HealthTech, GreenTech, BioTech, Retail, Smart Cities. Those categories are representative of the priorities that are setting international agendas and the strategic European Plans. 26 corporates, such as Pzifer, Cisco, Desigual and others from over Europe decided to join Scale-up Champions and bring more than 50 challenges for deep-tech startups to offer needful solutions. At the beginning of summer, the chosen startups will be matched with corporates and will start practical collaboration. All selected teams will participate in the six-month-long program and get mentorship support from international experts.
This year corporates are looking for open innovation solutions in the most market-demanded fields. For example in Industry 4.0 field startups can find related challenges to circular economy, process automation, quality control systems; in the field of HealthTech technology to help or improve the lifestyle of people with any pathology or disability or non-invasive health control solutions or methods; or in Smart Cities look for solutions on how to optimize mobility in cities and improve air quality.
Seven startups who joined the program in the first round last year still continue collaboration with corporates. One of the innovations they are developing is light, mobile, operator-friendly underwater drones (ROVs) equipped with ML algorithms. Another example is the digital tool for ship owners and suppliers to calculate the saved CO2 footprint and minimize risks related to implementing circular maintenance. Scale-up Champions organizers hope that new applicants will also be ambitious and jump to this program.
The application is open until the 29th of April for deep tech startups. All participants should already have a commercially proven product or service. The Scale-up Champions consortium will carry out a challenge-based selection process to identify the best startups among all the applicants. Scale-up Champions is Pan-European challenge-based virtual program to facilitate collaboration between corporations and startups through an easy, agile and guided methodology. Organizers provide investors and the deep-tech startup community in Europe with relevant tools and practices for networking, learning and cooperative investment management. The project builds on the premise of equalizing scaling-up opportunities for startups and connecting different ecosystems across Europe.