French entrepreneur wins European Innovation Award


Innovation "made in Europe": the winners of the EIT 2019 awards have just been announced! The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) has announced the winners of the prestigious 2019 awards. Marc Julien, for Diabeloop (France), David Pistoni Perez, for Zeleros (Spain), Sara Guimarães Gonçalves, for Trigger.Systems (Portugal), Michael Dittel, for LeafTech (Germany) and Matthew Dickson, for CorPower Ocean (Sweden/UK), won the first prizes for their innovations in the fields of climate, energy and health that advance Europe's capacity for innovation while working to create jobs and growth at European level.

This award recognizes teams whose products and services have a significant impact; the winning team receives the sum of €50,000. The EIT award winners, who celebrate outstanding innovation, were selected by an international jury. They were among 19 nominees from across Europe competing in categories recognising excellence in innovation in the fields of climate, energy, digitalisation, food, health and materials management.

Marc Julien, for Diabeloop (France), supported by EIT Health, has won the EIT Innovation Award. Diabeloop is a medtech company that brings the development of a breakthrough technological innovation in the automation of diabetes treatment. Its automated solution for the management of type 1 diabetes is designed to help children with diabetes live full lives, while making it easier for families and caregivers to manage the disease. « Partners play a key role, as no one has the skills to meet all the challenges of innovative product development and market access on their own. The EIT community has enabled us to promote cross-border cooperation to a large extent. "said Marc Julien.

More than 400 leading entrepreneurs, innovators and policy makers attended the EIT Awards Ceremony in Budapest. The winners were presented with their awards by Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport; László Palkovics, Hungarian Minister of Innovation and Technology, Sanja Damjanović, Montenegrin Minister of Science; Laima Kaušpadiene, Member of the EIT Governing Board; and Professor Werner Weidenfeld, Rector of the Alma Mater Europaea.

Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, responsible for the EIT, said: " Congratulations to the winners of the EIT 2019 Awards and to all the nominees. They are a source of inspiration for innovators across Europe and proof that the EIT, Europe's largest innovation network, is increasingly able to support ambitious entrepreneurs, job creation and the implementation of solutions to the challenges facing our societies. I look forward to seeing this innovation community continue to grow in the coming years. "

Dirk Jan van den Berg, Chairman of the Governing Board of the EIT, added: " Congratulations to all the winners of this year's EIT Awards! It has been impressive to see these talented innovators promoting their products here in Budapest and discovering their revolutionary "made in Europe" innovations. The companies supported by the EIT Community have already raised an impressive €1.5 billion through external investment. The EIT is Europe's most experienced driver of innovation and its primary objective is to help entrepreneurs turn their best ideas into solutions that will contribute to a greener, healthier and more sustainable planet. "

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The winners of the EIT 2019 Awards

The EIT 2019 winners

The EIT awards, whose winners were announced on Tuesday 15 October, recognise Europe's most talented entrepreneurs who are proposing solutions to the most pressing problems in the fields of climate, energy, digitalisation, food, health and raw materials management. These awards encourage entrepreneurs and promote 'made in Europe' innovation.

Michael Dittel, for LeafTech (Germany), supported by EIT Climate-KIC, won the EIT CHANGE Award. The prize is awarded to the best graduates of EIT training programmes and the winner receives €20,000. « As a creative person with a passion for engineering and innovation, I never knew where to focus my ideas and energy. The EIT Climate-KIC master's degree has shown me the way forward. ", explains Michael Dittel.

David Pistoni Perezfor Zeleros (Spain), supported by EIT Climate-KIC, won the EIT Audience Award. This award recognises the best innovation in the eyes of the public, with thousands of people voting for the prize across Europe. « The EIT is the ideal intermediary to develop our project on breakthrough innovations on a European scale. "he says.

Matthew Dicksonfor CorPower Ocean, based in Sweden and supported by EIT InnoEnergy, won the EIT Enterprise Award. The prize is awarded to successful start-ups and expanding companies and the winner receives €50,000. "The members of EIT InnoEnergy were the first to believe in our product and to want to invest in our project, which helped to attract other investors," says Matthew Dickson.

Sara Guimarães Gonçalves, for Trigger.Systems (Portugal), supported by EIT InnoEnergy, won the EIT Women's Award. The prize is awarded to outstanding female innovators; the winner receives the sum of €20,000. « Our sector is strongly marked by gender bias, but EIT InnoEnergy has provided me with the empowerment tools I need to succeed. "she explains.

Full list of winners and finalists of the EIT awards (first, second and third places) :

  • EIT EXCHANGE Awards: Michael Dittel, LeafTech (Germany); Kristapps Krafte, Vigo (Latvia); and Eirik Eide Pettersen, Seaborg Technologies (Denmark/Norway).
  • EIT Women's Award: Sara Guimares Goncalves, Trigger.System (Portugal); Karoline Beronius, Addressya (Sweden); and Maria Sievert, Inveox (Germany).
  • EIT Enterprise Awards: Matthew Dickson, CorPower Ocean (Sweden/UK); Max Sieghold, Sleepiz (Switzerland/Germany); and David Pistoni Perez, Zeleros (Spain).
  • EIT Innovator Awards: Marc Julien, Diabeloop (France); Rudolf Sollacher, Digital Twin Management (Germany); and Tim Houter, Hardt Hyperloop (Netherlands).
  • EIT Audience Award: David Pistoni Perez, Zeleros (Spain); Luca Giovannini, SMASH project (Italy); and Lynette Kucsma, Natural Machines (Spain/USA)

See the interviews of the laureates

Context: EIT - Making Innovation a Reality

The EIT was created in 2008 to boost Europe's capacity for innovation. The EIT is the only EU initiative that fully integrates business, education and research. With more than 1 500 partners and 50 innovation poles across Europe, we are the largest innovation network in the territory. What are the EIT's Knowledge and Innovation Communities focused on?

The EIT's eight Knowledge and Innovation Communities are working to :

  • Accelerating the transition to a zero-carbon economy (EIT Climate-KIC) ;
  • serve as a driving force for Europe's digital transformation (EIT Digital) ;
  • to spearhead the global revolution in food innovation and production (EIT Food);
  • provide EU citizens with more opportunities to enjoy a healthy life (EIT Health) ;
  • Ensuring the sustainability of Europe's energy future (EIT InnoEnergy) ;
  • strengthening and increasing the competitiveness of Europe's manufacturing industry (EIT Manufacturing) ;
  • make raw materials a major asset for Europe (EIT RawMaterials) ;
  • solve mobility problems in our cities (EIT Urban Mobility).

Together with their key partners, these communities offer a wide range of innovation and entrepreneurship activities, such as training courses combining technical and entrepreneurial skills, business creation and acceleration services, and the implementation of innovation-focused research projects.

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