The European supported IDEA Challenge European Innovative Start-up Competition, organised by EIT ICT Labs, is entering its second selection wave: 12 winning startups, 4 categories and up to €40,000 to be won. French startups are invited to apply by 30 September. The competition rewards 24 European startups with innovative projects in 8 categories, including Health and Well-being, Cloud of the Future, Internet of Things, etc. Startups were able to submit their applications in a first wave last April. A total of 311 projects were submitted from 25 European countries.
After a successful first round last spring, the European competition for innovative start-ups, IDEA Challenge, got off to a flying start on September 1 and ran until September 30. Organised by theEIT ICT Labs and its national partners, including the Institut Mines-Télécom, the IDEA Challenge competition will reward 12 new startups in four innovative sectors: cyber security and privacy, the Internet of Things, the smart city and mobility, and intelligent energy systems.
THE TIS - European Institute of Innovation and Technology - is an institute created by the EU in 2008 to accelerate innovation in Europe. Since January 2014, it has been part of the vast European Horizon 2020 programme with a 7-year budget of €80 billion. The ICT branch of the Institute - EIT ICT Labs - focuses on the innovation potential of Information and Communication Technologies. Its ambition is to make Europe the leader in innovation in new technologies.
European-backed competition to encourage innovative entrepreneurship
The IDEA Challenge competition is aimed at European startups created for less than 3 years or about to be created by an entrepreneur. In all cases, they still have an annual turnover of less than 24,000 Euros (see full rules and regulations). They can already be incubated or accelerated through another programme than the EIT ICT Labs programme. Start-ups must be active in one of the innovation sectors covered by the EIT ICT Labs. As there are 8 sectors, the competition has been divided into 2 waves covering 4 sectors each:
March 11 to April 20, 2014: Health and Well-being, Cyber-Physical Systems, Intelligent Spaces, Cloud of the Future
September 1 to 30, 2014: Cyber security and privacy, Internet of Things, Smart City and mobility, Intelligent energy systems
Call for applications until 30 September 2014
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To take part, all you have to do is register online: describe how your idea meets a real need, identify your potential market and explain your business model (cf complete list of questions). Each application is evaluated by industry experts and 8-10 finalists are selected. In the final, they must pit their project and convince a jury of its relevance and potential. The finals take place in 8 European cities. For the 2nd wave of the competition, the application process will be open throughout September and the finals will take place in October-November in Trento, Stockholm, London and Berlin.
Financial aid ranging from 15,000 to 40,000€ to be won
For each sector, the 3 best projects receive not only financial support (1st prize 40,000 Euros, 2nd prize 25,000 Euros, 3rd prize 15,000 Euros) but also resources to pursue their business (business development advice, integration into the European ecosystem and the activities of the EIT ICT Labs, work space offered for 6 months in a European country of their choice). No less than 24 startups are rewarded in this way. The competition will be repeated next year.
In the first wave, 311 projects were submitted from 25 European countries.
36 finalists were selected to present their projects. A great European battle! Among the 1st prizes, we will retain for example Tinnitracks, a German mobile application for treating tinnitus with music or Homeya Dutch home automation solution that allows you to control your house by voice.
About EIT ICT Labs
The EIT ICT labs is a European programme for accelerating innovation based on excellence. The mission of the EIT ICT Labs is to make Europe the leader in Information and Communication Technologies innovation, with a view to boosting economic growth and improving the quality of life of its citizens. The EIT ICT Labs is a branch of the EIT, the European Institute of Innovation and Technology. By connecting education, research and business, EIT ICT Labs enables new talent to emerge and bring about technological innovation. Its ecosystem is made up of partners from some of the world's leading international companies, cutting-edge research centres and top universities in the field of Information and Communication Technologies. All collaborate in an open manner. Since 2010, the EIT ICT Labs has been constantly mobilising talent, ideas, technologies, investments and companies with a European and then global vision.