Spain has one of Europe’s largest startup ecosystems, and Start4big is a new initiative to further strengthen it by increasing innovation, attracting international talent, and fostering collaboration between industry and startups.
The Start4big initiative is backed by five major Spanish companies – Aigües de Barcelona, CaixaBank, Naturgy, SEAT and Telefónica. These companies are joining forces to create a stronger ecosystem with digital, multi-sector collaboration, and to build and attract startups that will develop solutions and solve challenges to improve people’s daily lives.
The Start4big initiative is open to startups around the world, giving them the opportunity to collaborate with large corporations to develop and test prototypes, gain access to valuable resources and increase their growth and visibility.
Start4big will launch a total of eight annual challenges, divided into two editions called “Innovation Waves”. These Innovation Waves will last a total of six months each, from the program launch to the announcement of the winners.
The Innovation Waves will consist of four challenges: three cross-sector challenges in which startups will work with two or more Start4big partners, as well as a special transversal challenge involving all Start4big companies.
In its first edition, the challenges will focus on areas including IoT, AI, robotics, Big Data, Virtual Reality, and cybersecurity. They are specifically looking for startups to:
- Track customer activities in real time to personalise their experiences
- Help users control and manage consumption at home
- Improve customer experiences or reduce the cost of products and services in online transactions
- Provide new services that enhance communication between different devices, vehicles, or infrastructures
Selected startups will gain access to valuable resources to develop their products, including data, infrastructure, technical support, high level experts and industry knowledge, and access to the huge commercial networks of the companies backing Start4big.
Interested startups can register for the first Innovation Wave starting today through the registration platform on the Start4big website by March 11.
A jury made of experts in the tech, founders, CEO’s and managers, as well as academics, researchers or partners within the innovation ecosystem will evaluate and select the best projects. On June 27th, 2019 the list of selected startups will be published on the website.
There is no limit to the number of winners for each challenge – rather, the number of winners will be determined by the value of the projects developed.
Starting on July 1st, the pilots selected for each of the challenges will be developed, and then the next Innovation Wave will begin!