Next generation cleantech start-ups compete at Climate-KIC Venture Competition for title of Europe’s best climate venture

Birmingham (UK) – Europe’s most promising cleantech start-ups have been shortlisted by Climate-KIC to compete in the European finals of the Venture Competition 2015, on 29 October in Birmingham, UK.

The Venture Competition is hosted by Climate-KIC, the EU’s main climate innovation initiative. Competitors at the event are drawn from Climate-KIC’s Accelerator programme, which identifies and nurtures cleantech entrepreneurs from idea to start-up. In keeping with tradition, the Venture Competition will be held during Climate-KIC’s annual Innovation Festival, a three day conference that brings together the Climate-KIC community to share learning and best practices.

From national finals, to semi-finals, to the Big Final

Following national finals in countries across Europe, all Climate-KIC regions have selected the two best teams from their Accelerator programme to progress to the European semi-finals, which will take place on 28 October with 23 start-ups going head-to-head. Eight of these 23 semi-finalists will make their way to the main final the next day. The European finalists will be invited to pitch their start-up to an expert jury with cash awards for the three best teams: 1st – €40,000, 2nd – €20,000, 3rd – €5,000, with the third prize being an audience award.

The judging panel will comprise:

  • Marga Hoek, CEO of De Groene Zaak (chair)
  • Pierre Nougué, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of ECOSYS Group 
  • Murray McCaig, Managing Partner at ArcTern Ventures

Climate change as a business opportunity

Each of these start-ups has the potential to become a leader in Europe when it comes to providing commercial solutions to climate change. Hero Prins, Director of Entrepreneurship at Climate-KIC, says: “Cleantech is the single biggest business opportunity of the 21st century. We can have a planet with an abundance of cheap, clean industry and consumption within 20 years, provided that we support start-ups that are developing scalable, disruptive clean technologies. And this is precisely what the Climate-KIC Accelerator does.

Working on solutions for COP21

It is from this positive angle that Climate-KIC wants to contribute to COP21 in December in Paris. The Venture Competition is part of Climate-KIC’s Journey to Paris for COP21, with the start-ups from Climate-KIC’s Accelerator providing proof that there are many profitable possibilities for a sustainable future.

Winners of 2014

Last year’s winners of the Venture Competition show us that the next generation of cleantech entrepreneurs are already helping to build a low-carbon society: Winner aQysta is at the verge of moving into mass production, runner up Nordic Power Converters have just closed an investment round of $2M, while public favourite ReDuse just closed a significant funding round.


Note to editors:

For further information about the Venture Competition and the semi-finalists, visit the dedicated page on the Climate-KIC website

For more information please contact:

Rob Sinclair, Edelman for Climate-KIC,, +44 (0)203 047 2088

Programme of the semi-finals and the finals:

Wednesday the 28th in the Hyatt Regency in Birmingham

  • 15-17 Venture Competition semi-finals
  • 17-18 Venture Competition networking drinks & winner announcement

Thursday the 29th in the International Convention Centre Birmingham

  • Finals, session 1: 14 – 15.15
  • Finals, session 2: 15.30 – 16.30
  • award ceremony; during evening session 19.30 – 22.30

About Climate-KIC

Climate-KIC is the EU’s main climate innovation initiative. It is Europe’s largest public-private innovation partnership focused on mitigating and adapting to climate change. Climate-KIC consists of companies, academic institutions and the public sector.

The organisation has its headquarters in London, UK, and leverages national and regional centres across Europe to educate students and professionals, to support start-up companies and to bring together partners on innovation projects to bring about a connected, creative transformation of knowledge and ideas into products and services that help mitigate and adapt to climate change.
Climate-KIC is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union.

About Climate-KIC’s Journey to Paris

During the final 28 weeks in the run up to the Paris climate change summit COP21, Climate-KIC puts a weekly spotlight on innovators around Europe.

Information on the winners of the Venture Competition 2014



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