EIT Climate-KIC innovators featured in Forbes 30 under 30 Europe List

Six EIT Climate-KIC innovators have been honoured in this year’s prestigious Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe List.

  • List includes high profile young celebrities, icons and entrepreneurs

  • Features six EIT Climate-KIC and three EIT Digital supported innovators

  • Ground-breaking members of the climate movement sit alongside singer Dua Lipa, Game of Thrones actor Maisie Williams and winner of The Apprentice Joseph Valente

In the last three years, the EIT Community has had over 30 ventures or entrepreneurs featured in the Forbes 30 under 30 Europe List across four categories. Choosing from the diverse, competitive fields of Science & Healthcare, Social Entrepreneurs, Industry and Finance. across more than 30 European countries, nine disrupters supported by EIT Climate-KIC and EIT Digital were selected by the team of Forbes reporters and high-level experts.

Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport and the Commissioner responsible for the EIT, said: “Another year, another wonderful success for the EIT Community. I am proud that this prestigious list acknowledges young entrepreneurs who have been supported by the EIT in boosting their competences and turning their ideas into innovations that benefit all of us. We must step up our efforts to enable young Europeans to develop entrepreneurial mindsets and make the most of their lives. This is key in building a resilient, competitive Europe for the future.”

Martin Kern, EIT Interim Director, said: “It’s great to receive news of Forbes’ continued recognition of the EIT Community’s entrepreneurs. I’m proud of our Innovation Communities and really pleased for the young innovators whose hard work and dedication leads them to such recognition. We need to increase our support to Europe’s entrepreneurs so more have access to such opportunities.”

EIT Climate-KIC has been instrumental in enabling the innovators’ careers via its Accelerator programme by providing seed funding for their start-ups, training and bespoke coaching tailored to individual needs and access to wide-ranging networks. This support has meant they are better placed to validate their business models and put them on a path to commercial success.

Featured in the list are Estefania Tapias from ETH Zurich and at the Future Cities Laboratory in Singapore, Arnau Verdaguer who founded HPNow, Sympower founder Simon Bushell, Mulundu Sichone who created Pydro, Giovanni Anceschi who has been leading the technical development of Energy Way and Morten Bruun, co-founder of the Nordic fintech start-up Penstable

Science & Healthcare

Estefania Tapias, with ETH Zurich and the Future Cities Laboratory in Singapore, have been recognised for their ground-breaking work on mapping data and analysing how Singaporeans experience the tropical heat. With the data gathered, it is hoped that urban planners can design the city to disperse heat in a way which makes life more comfortable for residents and visitors.

Estefania, who is a graduate of EIT Climate-KIC’s PhD programme and the former President of the EIT Alumni Association, said:

“Training from EIT Climate-KIC in how to innovate and become a better entrepreneur in the field of climate change played a major role in helping me make the project a success.

“Access to the wider innovation community was also a huge positive influence.”

Arnau Verdaguer is also in the Science & Healthcare, celebrated for working on HPNow, helping agricultural greenhouses and hospitals purify and reuse their wastewater with cleantech Verdauger developed as a PhD student.

HPNow provides a first of its kind solution for on-site, on-demand production of hydrogen peroxide. Its devices greatly simplify the logistics of hydrogen peroxide application in the global agriculture and food industries for its use as an environmentally friendly disinfectant and biocide.

Having been supported by EIT Climate-KIC, the company has raised €5 million to develop and scale the innovation.

Social Entrepreneurs

Looking at the young people using business know-how to create a more sustainable society, Forbes selected Simon Bushell of Sympower. Sympower presents a solution to the problem of trying to bring renewable energy generation into a centralised electricity grid, which often has wildly fluctuating demand needs. Simon hopes that Sympower can facilitate the transition to a cleaner energy system by better matching energy demand with electricity generation provided by diverse renewable energy sources.

Sympower’s goal is a low-carbon, high-tech future. By providing typical households with a free smart system that integrates with heating and cooling devices and shifts the usage to cheaper hours (without compromising comfort), Sympower reduces household energy bills.

Industry

Most closely aligned with EIT Climate-KIC’s Sustainable Production Systems theme, these entrepreneurs have made waves in developing the manufacturing methods and products needed to address climate mitigation and adaptation.

Mulundu Sichone’s start-up called Pydro produces a compact, modular answer to the world’s leaking water network. In the UK alone, 300 billion gallons per year are lost in leaks. Sichone discovered that, by installing a hydroelectric turbine inside pipes with flowing water, they are able to generate native power supply, enabling them to connect to “smart networks” which can help identify leaks in the network.

Sichone went on to say:

“EIT Climate KIC has helped us refine our product proposition, and set us on the way to taking it to market. 

“What really impressed me is the pool of coaches EIT Climate-KIC has to offer. You will always find a person for every question that arises during the execution of your idea. Whether it is project management, financing or the patent strategy, EIT Climate-KIC has the right coach for you.”

Pydro was founded in 2016 with the mission to build the most compact energy recovery technology for water pipe networks.

Another energy-related innovation to improve our vital infrastructure, Giovanni’s Anceschi’s Energy Way has developed Baseline Dinamica. Projects include driving down energy use in supermarkets, by combining innovative methodology, very high volumes of data and analysis. The combination of these data and subsequent modelling enables customers to control and predict demand, and therefore fine-tune complex industrial processes, driving down costs and electricity consumption.

Energy Way has developed Baseline Dinamica, an innovative solution that allows the control, prediction and reduction of energy consumption. Their methodology allows the processing of a very high volume of data and correlates complex phenomena, enabling a finer tuning of complex industrial processes.

Finance

Facilitating and encouraging green investment (and divestment from high carbon portfolios) are essential efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

Co-founded by Morten Bruun, Penstable is a Danish start-up specialising in sustainable investments in the pension space and was formulated with the Global Goals for Sustainable Development in mind. Their product is based on a digital platform that allows users to track financial aspects such as return on investments and their total savings as well as the positive impact their pension savings can have on the environment.

 
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