EIT Climate-KIC showcases climate innovation at R&I Days

EIT Climate-KIC participated in the European Commission’s Research and Innovation Days, with representation in the policy conference and the virtual exhibition by key climate start-ups.

This edition of the annual flagship event, which took place on 23 and 24 June 2021, provided an interactive space to exchange on ways to strengthen the new European Research Area and the role of R&I in the context of Europe’s COVID-19 recovery. This year’s edition also marked the official launch of Horizon Europe, with calls for proposals now open. 

 

Policy conference

Two young entrepreneurs supported by EIT Climate-KIC shared their experience in the well-received workshop ‘The voice of EIT’s young pioneers’: Cristina Aleixendri Muñoz, Co-founder of bound4blue and Gary Lewis, CEO of Resourcify. The session highlighted EIT’s unique ability to create fully-fledged innovation ecosystems and provide innovative tools to kickstart companies with world-leading aspirations. The session was moderated by Eva Kaili, Member of the European Parliament, following introductory remarks by Themis Christophidou, Director-General for DG EAC.

Resourcify was supported by both EIT Climate-KIC and EIT Raw Materials and is now a successful company acting in the circular economy space. Resourcify was also featured in the 2021 Forbes 30 under 30 list. Lewis highlighted how his positive experience of EIT Climate-KIC’s Accelerator programme contributed to turning his concept into a viable business case: 

“Public funding has helped us to come into life and push our industry forward and we need more of this! Regulation is the driver of innovation and combining that with funding creates a powerful combination.” 

With lots of enthusiasm, Aleixendri Muñoz shared her experience as a young entrepreneur in developing bound4blue, a technology which provides rigid sails systems for vessels, using wind power to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions. She highlighted how the EIT community was key in supporting her team’s project along its journey: 

“We participated in Stage 3 of the Accelerator programme of EIT Climate-KIC in Spain and we were among the companies which benefited from the EIT’s COVID-19 call.”

bound4blue has reached an important milestone this year in successfully installing the sail system on Balueiro Segundo in Panama, being now the first fishing vessel in the world to be equipped with an auxiliary wind-assisted propulsion system.

A recording of the workshop is available here: #RiDaysEU | In the spotlight: The voice of EIT’s young pioneers – YouTube 

 

Virtual exhibition

Ÿnsect, which benefited from EIT Climate-KIC’s Accelerator programme, was also among the 100 EU-funded projects featured in the virtual European R&I Exhibition thanks to strong potential in triggering transformation in citizen daily life. The start-up transforms insects into sustainable ingredients to feed pets, fish, plants, and human beings.

 
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