330 participants attended the second edition of the Business Booster, a leading European event for the energy industry, organised by KIC InnoEnergy. Executives from 100 of the leading European energy companies, including EDF, Iberdrola, Gas Natural, ENGIE and Tauron, met with 130 entrepreneurs from 8 countries in order to share innovative ideas and new technologies in the sustainable energy industry.
The event was opened by the Catalan Minister of Economics and Knowledge Andreu Mas-Colell, Diego Pavía, the CEO of KIC InnoEnergy, and Elena Bou, KIC InnoEnergy´s Innovation Director. The event included 10 keynote speakers from the energy industry, from successful start-ups and venture capitalists, who discussed the challenges of the energy market and the strategic role of innovation and entrepreneurship in sustainable energy.
Gina Domanig, Managing Partner of Emerald Technology Ventures, involved in KIC InnoEnergy’s Venture Capital community, discussed future trends of the energy market from an investment point of view, while Ankit A. Shukla, Practice Director at Frost & Sullivan gave his insight on the future of energy technologies, focusing on the convergence of different technologies as a new trend, which create new opportunities for collaboration. Experts from leading energy companies have also joined a roundtable discussion on the role of innovation in the energy challenges, sharing real-life examples of how their companies are innovating and how new and creative flows are making their way within the industry.
During the event, the start-ups, supported by KIC InnoEnergy´s accelerator services all across Europe, showcased their technologies at an exhibition and pitched the industry about their company. For them, the crucial moment in their business development is the scalability that makes them move from small to medium companies. In order to inspire them, KIC InnoEnergy invited serial entrepreneurs from successful start-ups who have already made that step and have grown their business.
As Elena Bou, KIC InnoEnergy´s Innovation Director, highlighted: “It is estimated that only 50% of European start-ups survive the first year, and reaching the first customer is the key for survival for 90% of the start-ups. At KIC InnoEnergy we actively support the connection between industry and start-ups to help them in that process, with the Business Booster being a great example. By October, we have supported 70 new innovative companies in Europe, 30 of which are already selling in the market.”
“The KIC InnoEnergy Business Booster represents a unique occasion for both industry representatives and entrepreneurs to discover opportunities to improve their business and initiate transactions. A total of 130 entrepreneurs presented their new ideas and products to 150 industry attendees, including CEOs, managing directors and R+D directors, and had the chance to meet and share needs and expertise in a particular way.” explained Diego Pavía, KIC InnoEnergy’s CEO. “This initiative has been a great experience that further underlines that innovation is one of Europe’s industry competitive strengths.”
Building on the continuous success of the Business Booster, Diego Pavía has announced to continue with a new event in 2015 in Berlin, the hot-spot of European innovation. The aim is to bring the industry and start-ups together yearly to provide a platform as the meeting point of the energy and innovation sector.