The European Union boosts start-ups to respond to the climate emergency

The European Union boosts start-ups to respond to the climate emergency

The Clean Cities acceleration program promotes projects for the sustainable development of cities

According to the United Nations study, the reduction of the carbon footprint before 2025 seems to be an essential task to improve urban population’s quality of life. In order to contribute to contribute to this challenge and many others related to cities resilience, 

Clean Cities ClimAccelerator -the reference program for accelerating European companies in the field of urban sustainability-, launches its project to promote startups that intend to contribute to the development of cities of the future. In this new edition, the 29 selected start-ups will have the opportunity to exploit their full potential to address climate neutrality, focusing on five areas of action:

  • Mobility, logistics, & public space systems. The main purpose is to reduce, at least, 50% of greenhouse gas emissions to achieve the carbon footprint objectives set out in the 2030 Agenda of the European Union (EU).
  • Green spaces, climate resilience & urban adaptation systems. Investing in nature and retrofitting the urban system to address climate risks is a byword for public health investment.
  • Renewable energy systems. Investment in sustainable resources, in accordance with the policies set by the EU, seems as one of the solutions to current energy needs. Local administrations must lead these projects, which begin in each house and in each neighborhood.
  • Information & data systems. Studies and more accurate data (economic, technological and social) make it possible to address strategies and targets for the decarbonization of cities.
  • Community retrofit - District renewal systems. The main axis is to harness urban buildings to provide them with an efficient energy system. In this way, and thanks to technology, homes can have better resistance to climate impact and in turn take advantage of the energy of the environment.

The program

Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and Impact Hub Vienna (IHV) are the institutions leading this project in collaboration with a wide network of partners from both the public and private sectors. Designed in three phases, the selected start-ups will receive financial support and training resources for their consolidation in the market.

  1. Explore: 1st is focusing now on helping start-ups refine and develop their specific unique selling point and business model: the program offers a virtual boot camp, one-on-one mentoring, up to € 4.000 funding for each start-up, workshops and exposure to our global network and events. 
  2. Validation and Collaboration: The 2nd stage brings additional funding up to € 20.000; start-ups will engage with demand-owners, support from experts, mentors during workshops and various activities move with a well-formulated business model to real customers. They dial in on solving a real problem by one of our challenge owners and continuously develop their proof of concept.  
  3. Impact: Within the 3rd stage start-ups are ready to pitch their business cases to investors or launch it to customers. We offer workshops on valuation, investor strategy, financial structuring, deal-making, strategic partnering and access to EIT Climate-KIC Investment Program and Investor Marketplace. 

Clean Cities ClimAccelerator is built on the innovation ecosystems developed by public institutions such as the City Councils of Madrid, Zaragoza, Valladolid and Vienna. And it focuses on solving the real challenges that cities face. In addition, it has the collaboration of important strategic partners: Ferrovial, Repsol, Acciona, Banco Santander, Zubicities, Wien Energie, Wiener Linien, Wiener Lokalbahnen or Wiener Wohnen, among others.

List of 29 startups selected

About Universidad Politécnica de Madrid: 

UPM is the 1st Spanish-speaking Technological University and the 75th Technological University in the world. This University has a strong commitment to the SDGs and is working to have a climate neutral campus by 2040. Impact University & Entrepreneurship UPM (I&E UPM) is an area created to stimulate the innovation process in the technological ecosystem. I&E UPM has created and developed an "open technological ecosystem" linked to the development of technology-based products / processes, with more than 300 high-tech startups created and 156 million euros raised in recent years. Under this brand, the University develops activities that include training for entrepreneurs and the incubation and acceleration of start-ups.

About Impact Hub Vienna: 

It is a recognized node for innovators and has served as a launch pad for numerous impact companies and initiatives across Europe. Its community grew to more than 1,000 active members, and more than 500 impact start-ups were supported together with their partners in more than 40 nodes through acceleration and investment programs in various impact issues such as education, health, responsible consumption. and sustainable, biodiversity, rural development and many more. At the global level, the United Nations officially recognizes Impact Hub for "helping to scale up efforts to address the SDGs through business solutions."

About EIT Climate-KIC: 

A Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC), working to accelerate the transition to a carbon-neutral and climate-resilient society. With the support of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, it identifies and supports innovation that will allow society to mitigate and adapt to climate change. The rationale is that a decarbonized sustainable economy is not only necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change, it presents a host of opportunities for business and society.

For more information about the Clean Cities ClimateAccelerator program and the start-ups participating in the 2022 edition, visit our website https://www.cleancities.network/

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