On 14 November 2019, in Riga, Latvia, the EIT Jumpstarter Grand Final took place as the side event of Digital Freedom Festival. In total 18 teams from 10 countries, shared their innovative solutions in healthcare, food industry and raw materials sector.

The EIT Jumpstarter is a very selective, competitive programme for early-stage innovators, which was awarded the Best European Association Training Initiative title in 2019. The programme has been developed by three collaborating organisations – EIT Health, EIT RawMaterials and EIT Food, which are supported by the EIT. This programme aims to reach out, identify and support the best ideas from students, PhDs, tech enthusiasts as well as researchers and professionals with a potential impact on the Healthcare, Food and Raw Materials value chain.

Overall in the third consecutive year of EIT Jumpstarter, 90 teams from 13 European countries went through two intensive periods: six business-planning boot camps in spring and further business skills, training and mentoring sessions in the autumn. Only six best teams in each category – Food, Health, Raw Materials – coming from 10 countries were selected to join the Grand Final which for the first time was organised in Latvia. The best teams were awarded cash prizes in the total amount of EUR 70 000.

EIT Jumpstarter is the unique pan-European programme which identifies talents with the most promising innovative ideas and provides them with comprehensive business skills mentoring and training support. According to our survey, 70% of programme attendees had no business experience earlier. We provided them with intensive training sessions run by best cross-industry mentors. As a result, they are ready to set up their own business and make headway. The funding they received is a cherry on the pie.

Dora Marosvolgyi, EIT Jumpstarter Programme Manager

EIT RawMaterials Finalists:

  • ATLANT 3D Nanosystems – develops the first 3d printer for rapid prototyping of micro and nanochip with more than 450 different materials
  • Hermit Labs – connected mining solutions for mines of the future using AI, IoT and data analytics for optimized resources management and deep insight into mining activities.
  • Nordic Carbon – the proposed plan relates to the EIT RawMaterials focus area for eliminating virgin metal mining especially platinum needed for the fuel cells. Our proposed technology is based on the conversion of biomass wastes to produce value-added carbon materials with high porosity and activity for the fuel cell reaction which has also a high potential for the electrodes of supercapacitors and batteries due to the high porosity.
  • MiningSandboxAR – helps mining companies who want to get social licenses to operate and simplified mine planning and awareness of their mining operations by reducing mine planning time by 20% (hours) and getting local people to give licence to operate. MiningSandboxAR is used as a communication tool for mining companies in the mining permit process, where are several steps where is needed to demonstrate the results for different stakeholders (ministry, experts, local government, people who living in the mining region).
  • UP Catalyst – we have developed novel, inexpensive and sustainable technology to produce synthetic graphite, graphene and various catalysts out of secondary raw materials.
  • ZeroSbatti –  it applies the circular economy principles to alleviate the pressure of the extraction of the raw materials on the growing countries communities. We make WEEE collection profitable by using technology to connect citizens with existing players.

EIT RawMaterials winners

In the Raw Materials category, the 1st place received UP Catalyst (Estonia) with the sustainable technology to produce synthetic graphite, graphene and various catalysts out of secondary raw materials.

We are very excited and happy about this win. EIT Jumpstarter is a great programme with amazing mentors. For us, it’s a unique opportunity, because there are not many funding mechanisms which work with raw materials. This prize will be our first investment in our small facility.

Ivar Krusenber, UP Catalyst

2nd place in this category was Nordic Carbon (Finland), with technology to produce value-added carbon materials with high porosity and activity for the fuel cell reaction which has also a high potential for the electrodes of supercapacitors and batteries due to the high porosity.

In the 3rd place ranked MiningSandboxAR (Estonia) helping mining companies that want to get social licenses to operate and simplify planning and awareness of their mining operations.

EIT Health winners

The 1st place in the Health category won iLoF with a product that screens patients for Alzheimer’s Clinical trials, using artificial intelligence and photonics to transform drug discovery using an inexpensive, portable device. 2nd place received Ligence from Lithuania with a solution that uses Deep Learning to automate heart ultrasound examination what results in the shorter procedure and greater patient admission rates. The 3rd place won team from Italy iBioTHEx that plans to develop a new anti-cachexia drug to be exploited by pharma companies in basic and drug development studies aimed against cachexia.

I cannot be happier with this prize. We work closely with pharmaceutical companies, so the money will be used to fast track our product in the market and make sure our solutions reach patients as soon as possible

 Luis Valente, ILoF

EIT Food winners

1st place in Food category was 2BNanoFood, who will produce and commercialise custom-made solutions based on bio-based and biodegradable materials, aiming to replace synthetic materials in foods while maintaining their quality and safety.

We can name lots of benefits from the EIT Jumpstarter – we have reached several achievements, made so many contacts, all the mentoring that we had in all these months is measureless, and of course the prize will help us move forward.

2BNanoFood team 

2nd place was earned by RapidPricer B.V. – the solution that helps retailers to increase margins and reduce waste by automating pricing and promotions in real-time, unlike traditional consulting solutions. FiberBio won the 3rd place whose fibre-rich products are made of upcycled fruit, vegetable and seed pomace which is presently discarded during juice and oil production.

EIT Jumpstarter prizes

In total, nine winner teams were chosen. Three best ideas in each category won prizes of EUR 5 000, EUR 7 000 and EUR 10 000 accordingly. Additionally, special prizes across all categories were given: Best Cross-thematic Business Idea to Baltic Freya, Audience Awards received Odd.Bot and Best RIS start-up went to ZeroSbatti, each of EUR 5 000.

In 2019, the EIT Jumpstarter programme was awarded and named as the Best European Association Training Initiative, thus it can be treated as the litmus paper of trends and tendencies among young innovators. This year the EIT Jumpstarter Programme was held for the third year. For the first time event was held in Riga and it was organized as a side event of the Digital Freedom Festival.