EIT Climate-KIC on the New Accelerator Programme

EIT Climate KIC
Environment and Climate Change; Economic and private sector development

project description

Between 2010 and 2020, the EIT Climate-KIC Accelerator Programme has become the largest climate-focused acceleration programme in the world, having supported +1.600 climate positive startups attracting over 2B EUR in investments and creating thousands of jobs across the EU. For its second decade of operation the EIT CKIC has decided to unlock innovation potential from the CKIC Partner Community and outsource the design and execution of the ClimAccelerator program to its Members. The Consortium around Luvent Consulting, Trinity College Dublin and the Danish Technical University has proposed to support the transformation of urban areas towards circular cities of the future.  

In 2021 the Consortium implemented its first Pilot Programme with Partner Cities Dublin, Berlin, Copenhagen and Athens and Corporate Partners, notably logistic giant UPS and Organisations such as Berlins Public Private Innovation Centre InfraLab, supporting the programme both financially as well as in kind. The Programme supported 15 startups in phase 1, providing Business Development Services (BDS), business acceleration support, circular economy impact assessment tools and methodological framework and access to investors as well as city and corporate partnerships for piloting and building of joint ventures. The participating start-ups have been able to attract considerable seven figure investments during the accelerator program and were able to develop their business models and market position further. Through the multi-city partnerships the programme helped startups expand their geographic operations to new markets as well.  

In its second year, in 2022, the Programme is set to support 30 startups in phase 1, focussing on BDS and circular quantification matrix, with the second phase developing the tailored accelerator program curriculum further and  providing bespoke one on one training for startup founders, as well as product and service enhancements together with match-making activities and a newly introduced phase 3 facilitating direct investments, public-private partnerships and business development support to new geographic regions from our partner network. The number of partner cities increases, including notably eastern and western European secondary cities, leading in the transformation towards a circular economy, new corporate Partners including Veolia, the largest recycling, energy and waste management company in Europe and ecosystem partners in the partner cities such as Berlin Partner. 

Startups are receiving up to 18.000EUR in cash from the EU EIT fund as part of the programme, plus up to 30.000EUR in non-share funding from partners in addition to the opportunities for access to shareholder investments. The programme is implemented as a hybrid digital and offline model where most of the ongoing training and support is provided digitally via virtual meetings and cloud based training resources. The Demo Day, notably to be held regularly in a European capital, was moved online due to the COVID measures in 2021 and is set to take place in Berlin in November 2021. 

services provided

  • Feasibility study for the development of the circular cities climate accelerator and development of concept and detailed methodology to apply for EIT Grant funding. 
  • Development of a bespoke curriculum and accelerator programme in line with the successful heritage of the ClimAccelerator framework, yet innovating processes and adapting to the theme of circular transformation in cities. 
  • Open call, promoting, visibility and communication of the programme to attract applications, startups, to the program and targeted one-on-one onboarding and communication to attract co-funding of 50% with a total value of 1M EUR in the first two years. 
  • Establishing a robust assessment matrix for selecting startups and conducting interviews, establishing a selection panel and selecting startups to participate in the programme and receive grant money. 
  • Grant management of +300T EUR annually and distribution administration to startups. 
  • Cooperation with city administrations to develop awareness and develop capacities to cooperate with innovative early stage startups in the area of circularity, enabling decision makers to assess the sustainability, viability and climate impact of the considered solutions through a circular impact assessment matrix developed by ClimateKIC and the Consortium, 
  • Implementing Business Development Training sessions for the group with over 15 different mentors and coaches during each cohort. 
  • Facilitating and organising online as well as offline workshops, matchmaking events, demo/investor days, one-on-one venture facilitating between city and organisational partners and participating startups.