EIT ICT Labs challenges startups to shape the Future of the Cloud
Winners receive a combined price money of 80,000 Euros, the invaluable opportunity to join Europe’s biggest innovation network, office space for six months, and coaching by EIT ICT Labs’ Business Development Accelerator towards European success stories.
On June 24th, EIT ICT Labs announced three new winners of the Idea Challenge in the category Future Cloud. Thus ends the first wave of the EU wide startup contest that seeks innovative ideas addressing eight different tech trend topics. Nine international teams pitched their ideas at the EIT ICT Labs Future Cloud Symposium in Rennes in front of 250 guests and a nine-person jury consisting of representatives from Arenatis Capital Partners, Tinyclues, F-Secure, Telx, European Investment Fund, Aalto University, and EIT ICT Labs.
Joe Weinman, Vice President of Telx, said:
“There is a complex set of factors that the judges take into consideration which is the market opportunity, the ability to execute, differentiated value proposition, profitable business model, clear costumer value, clarity of focus for the company, the ability to both make some progress immediately but also bridge and grow to a much larger market.”
Testfabrik wins Gold
The German startup Testfabrik demonstrated the best prospects across all the criteria, and therefore won the top prize of 40,000 Euro for the idea of a cloud software that automatically tests web applications across browsers.
“It’s been a great competition with a lot of great competitors and pitches. For us it’s really important to have this international prize,” said Bernd Pohl, Co-founder of Testfabrik.“ We are going to do the best out of the money: hire people, optimize our product and go the next steps to build up our company.”
Silver and Bronze go to Spain
Agroptima from Spain received the second-place award of 25,000 Euro for their plan to develop an agricultural cloud that gathers real time data collected from fields, tractors and machinery through sensors. The tool will be useful for farmers to manage and optimize their farms.
“We cannot wait to go back home and work even harder,” said Emilia Vila, CEO of Agroptima. “It’s an injection of motivation. We’re so happy that they [the judges] believed in us, because we want to really be the future of agriculture and now we are one step closer to make our vision a reality.”
The third-place award of 15,000 Euros went to another Spanish startup called LeanXcale. The startup provides a cloud database that is able to process millions of transactions per second, solve analytical queries over TBs of data in seconds and correlate millions of events per second with stored data.
Working towards European Success Stories
“Supporting entrepreneurship is central to EIT ICT Labs’ mission to drive European leadership in ICT innovation for economic growth and quality of life,” said Willem Jonker, CEO of EIT ICT Labs. “We are proud to provide the winners not only the necessary resources to boost their businesses but also the opportunity to gain international visibility, and access to Europe’s biggest innovation network in the field of ICT. This makes the Idea Challenge a truly unique startup competition.”
8 cities. 8 topics. One challenge
The Idea Challenge is divided into two waves. In the first wave teams and individuals were asked to submit ideas to address one of the following tech trends: Health & Wellbeing, Cyber Physical Systems, Smart Spaces, or Future Cloud. The submission phase for the second phase will be open as of September 1. Ideas that address the topics Cyber Security and Privacy, Internet of Things, Urban Life and Mobility or Smart Energy Systems can be submitted through www.ideachallenge.eitictlabs.eu.