EIT InnoEnergy start-ups | European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT)
EIT InnoEnergy BigBooster wins

Global recognition for EIT InnoEnergy supported start-ups

Gulplug and Sylfen, two start-ups supported by EIT InnoEnergy – the European sustainable energy innovation engine – are celebrating their wins at the BigBooster Grand Final in Lyon, France last week.

The BigBooster is an international non-profit acceleration programme that helps innovative start-ups and projects in bio and health, global impact and informative tech expand their international reach with a focus on the French, US and Chinese innovation ecosystems.

Winners were chosen for their impact on society, market attractiveness, the innovative nature of their business proposition, competitive position and overall quality of application.

Gulplug, winner of the Informative Tech Award, is the developer of two devices – a magnetic plug that connects machines to electrical power and a sensor that links devices to the internet.

Global Impact Award winner, Sylfen, has created a distributed renewable generation solution with integrated energy storage for buildings and eco-districts.

Richard Biagioni, CEO of EIT InnoEnergy France, says: 'We are Europe’s largest sustainable energy accelerator, currently supporting more than 170 start-ups across Europe – providing funding and business support commercialisation. The fact that two of our start-ups took the top prizes in a global award – out of 500 applicants – goes to show the impressive quality of our portfolio.'


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More than 500 start-ups applied for the programme – 100 of which were chosen to attend a three day intensive booster camp in Lyon last November. From there, the 20 most promising projects were invited to a second three-day booster camp in Boston, US in February 2017. The sessions set out to test and improve the start-ups’ international value proposition and strategy using guidance from industry-leading mentors and experts, including representatives from EDF, Engie and Veolia.

Biagioni continues: 'EIT InnoEnergy is on a mission to help its start-ups learn from successes all over the world. Boston is a world-leader when it comes to innovation in sustainable energy. There is a lot ambitious energy companies can learn from Boston-based businesses as they strive to grow into new markets.'

The start-ups received mentoring from business experts, attended a panel discussion on how to set up business in the US, and guided tours with the likes of Greentown Labs, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Schneider Electric in Boston. They were also invited to attend the Grand Final at the Cité Centre des Congrès in Lyon last week, where Gulplug and Sylfen received the highest recognition. The winners will also attend a bootcamp in Shanghai and Shenzhen, China later this year.

Another start-up supported by EIT InnoEnergy – HySiLabs, the creator of an emission-free hydrogen based liquid fuel – also made it to the final 10. EIT InnoEnergy has supported Gulplug, HySiLabs and Sylfen on its Highway programme for a combined total of five years. The Highway is a tailored offering for innovative early-stage start-ups in Europe that aims to support companies on their journey to commercial success.


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Main Photo: EIT InnoEnergy BigBooster wins