From idea to start-up

Could your research support an amazing business idea? Apply to the Lab2Market programme to bring your scientific research from lab to market!

The EIT RawMaterials Lab2Market programme is open for Master’s and PhD students inspired to start their entrepreneurial journey that launches sustainable solutions for the raw materials marketplace.

The Lab2Market is designed for:

  • EIT Labelled students, enrolled or recent graduates from the EIT RawMaterials Labelled Master’s programmes
  • PhD students currently enrolled in raw materials-related field of studies at universities within Europe
  • Teams including at least 1 member from the aforementioned Master or PhD student categories

The Lab2Market aims to coach and mentor Master’s and PhD students to develop innovative solutions ready for market. The programme empowers future entrepreneurs to start new businesses, create new jobs and commercialise new technologies that will generate impact on the raw materials value chain.

The programme is divided into three phases.

Phase 1 – Ideation: From research & ideas to start-up concepts

  • Educate participants on the principles of start-ups and introduce them to tools and methodologies for start-up concepts.
  • Develop ideas for pressing industry challenges across the value chain: from exploration, responsible mining and mineral processing to recycling, substitution and a transition to a circular economy.
  • Form a ‘dream team’ of like-minded peers and identify clear roles and responsibilities. 

Phase 2 – Start-up Development: Accelerate the start-up concept

  • Validate customer needs, market size and go-to-market strategy; identify regulations and other specific technical and market entry criteria.
  • Validate the value proposition and complete the Business Model Canvas.
  • Create a solid technical concept and a product roadmap.
  • Complete a business plan and a team to support the next phase.

Phase 3 – Incubation: Launching a start-up

  • Establish a start-up and register as a legal entity at the Chamber of Commerce and the Tax Authorities.
  • Create a Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
  • Build a five-year financial forecast supporting/financing needs and strategy.
  • Achieve first sales of products/services (could also be a pre-sale like a market test).

Lab2Market offers a multi-layered engagement programme, including:

  • Info Days
  • Design Thinking Labs
  • Bootcamp Trainings
  • Mentoring Sessions
  • Networking Events
  • Pitching Competition

Thematic Scope

Minerals, metals and advanced materials are key enablers to achieve the objectives of the European Green Deal.

To be selected in the Lab2Market programme, your solution should address a challenge in the innovation areas we support:


Mineral exploration

Technologies and solutions for improved and new mineral exploration


Responsible sourcing

Technologies and solutions for more efficient, responsible and sustainable modern mining that raises the existing ESG benchmarks


Mineral and metallurgical processes

Technologies and solutions for sustainable mineral and metal processing and for improved materials production



Technologies and solutions for sustainable materials supply from secondary sources and recycling


Substitution of critical and toxic materials

New technologies or services that make it possible to substitute or lessen the quantities used of critical or toxic materials in key industries


Circular economy

Solutions and business models implementing circular economy concepts

Key dates

  • Deadline for applications Phase 1: 9 February 2023, 17:00 CET
  • Selection of participants of Phase 1 and notification of decision: mid-February 2023
  • Phase 1 – Ideation: February-April 2023
  • Deadline for applications Phase 2: 21 April 2023, 17:00 CET
  • Selection of participants of Phase 2 and notification of decision: early May 2023
  • Phase 2 – Start-up Development: May-June 2023
  • Pitching Competition: late June 2023
  • Phase 3 – Incubation: June – October 2023


Teams graduating from Phase 2 will compete in the final Pitching event on late June 2023, and the best four start-ups will be awarded prizes up to €10,000.

Up to 15 teams will enter Phase 3, with the pre-condition to launch a new start-up, and receive funding from €3,000 up to €17,000 each.

Who can apply?

Phase 1: Candidates for the EIT RawMaterials Lab2Market programme Phase 1 are only teams or individuals that belong to one of the following groups:

  • Enrolled students from EIT RawMaterials Master’s programmes.
  • Recent graduates from an EIT RawMaterials Master’s programme from 2020 or later.
  • PhD students in engineering or/and science fields of raw materials from within Europe.

Phase 2: The call is eligible for candidates that meet the following criteria:

  • Teams that finished and graduated from the EIT RawMaterials Lab2Market Phase 1.
  • New teams with an innovative idea/solution and start-up concept, consisting of a minimum of two members. At least one member must be an enrolled, a recent graduate of the EIT RawMaterials Master’s programme, or a PhD student. At least one member must act as Entrepreneurial and Tech Lead:
    • The Entrepreneurial Lead is expected to work on the project full-time over the duration of the Lab2Market programme and must represent the team in Bootcamps and all core training sessions.
    • The Technical Lead is the principal investigator of the research project. This team member is expected to participate in select training sessions and assist the Entrepreneurial Lead throughout the programme.

Phase 3: Teams that have graduated from Phase 2 of the EIT RawMaterials Lab2Market programme are eligible to apply and participate in Phase 3.

Important information

To learn more about the eligibility criteria, thematic scope and all the details of the EIT RawMaterials Lab2Market programme 2022-2023, please refer to the document below:

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