Applications are now live for the second open call for Data Pitch, giving European data startups another chance to join this groundbreaking accelerator programme which provides the opportunity to work alongside major corporates.
The Met Office, Konica Minolta and Greiner International Packaging are some of the latest internationally renowned organisations to agree to share their data with European startups for Data Pitch, an accelerator funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme.
Other data providers include Netherlands-based multinational telecoms company Altice, the University of Dundee’s GROW Observatory, Portugese healtchcare company Jose de Mello Saude pan-European travel community MASAI and a global financial services provider.
Startups will be able to apply for a place on the accelerator, which provides world-class business support and up to €100K to companies who can propose data-driven solutions to a series of challenges, using combinations of open, closed and shared data.
Successful applicants chosen after the closing date in October 2018 will be able to join the six-month programme which offers:
- up to €100K equity-free funding
- expert mentoring
- investment opportunities
- access to data from established businesses and the public sector
- webinars, training sessions and networking opportunities
Eighteen startups are already participating in the programme, working with data providers including Deutsche Bahn, the largest railway operator and infrastructure owner in Europe, and Portuguese retail giant Sonae.
So far, these businesses have attracted over €830,000 in sales and investment, and have created 30 additional jobs. Furthermore, their final products and services are expected to create significant value from sales, investments and efficiencies and result in powerful new data-enabled business models.
In addition to the specific tasks set by the data providers, there are seven sector challenges which cover the key areas of pharmaceuticals, smart transport, automotive, energy, finance, telecoms and privacy and consent.
There is also an open challenge which gives startups free rein to develop something truly transformative in the form of software, hardware, data exchange formats, wearables or registries, which can then be applied over a range of industries and will either reinvent an existing process or find a resolution for a previously unsolvable problem.
Elena Simperl, Professor at University of Southampton and Data Pitch Project Director said: “A key goal of Data Pitch is to encourage the flow of data between organisations, creating an innovation ecosystem, where larger organisations work closely with agile startups to learn from each other, using data as an enabler to solve problems.
“Today every organisation generates and owns substantial data assets, but many do not have the expertise to use them effectively. By applying an established open innovation model at scale we are engaging some of the most creative startups across Europe.
“This open call is challenging startups to answer the questions that matter and in the process develop commercial opportunities and become successful and scalable businesses with game-changing ideas which can demonstrate real impact.”
Ricardo Marvão, Co-founder & Head of Education at Beta-i said: “Europe’s top data innovators will create diverse solutions to different industry challenges, that range from personal data privacy to reducing fraud in financial systems, or combating climate change. This program aims to help the European industry, with data enabled tools and services from some of Europe’s brightest startup minds, and that is in close alignment with Beta-i’s mission and vision”.
Jeni Tennison, ODI CEO said: “At the ODI, we want data to work for everyone and believe in facilitating simple and safe access to appropriate data to enable innovation to thrive. Better access to data, coupled with understanding of the real challenges faced by a sector, can help to drive innovation and wide benefits.
“Data Pitch is creating social and economic opportunities by giving small, innovative businesses access to datasets from major corporates that might previously have been out of reach. In doing so, it’s building a framework for better and easier co-operation, strengthening the EU data economy and generating growth.”
To apply for Data Pitch, companies need to be based in one of the EU28 or Horizon 2020 associated countries and registered with the European Commission as an SME as well as being able to demonstrate access to data owned by another party or, in the case of the data provider-led challenges, show how they plan to use the data being shared.