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An inside look at this year’s EIT Digital Challenge | Apply now to Compete, Win, Raise & Scale!

The EIT Digital Challenge is on a mission to find the best deep tech entrepreneurs that Europe has to offer, help them scale internationally and bolster the European deep tech ecosystem. Now in its tenth year, 20 finalists will be invited to an exclusive final event with up to 10 winners gaining entry to the EIT Digital Accelerator Programme. 

Europe’s deep tech sector is at an exciting point right now. Thanks to support from bodies like EIT Digital, and growing investor interest, the market is bursting with promising innovations and startups developing cutting-edge tech.

Whilst the level of innovation is hotting up, many startups and innovators still find themselves struggling to scale and compete on a global level. They lack hands-on support and guidance to reach the next level – and that’s where EIT Digital comes in.

EIT Digital has now launched the 10th edition of its flagship challenge: The EIT Digital Challenge.

The challenge provides a platform for game-changing companies and innovative entrepreneurs to showcase their solutions and reach global success. With the support of EIT Digital, previous Accelerator programme participants have gone on to raise €900 million. Now, you could be one of them.

To find out more about the programme, we sat down with Fabrizio Della Pace, Challenges Lead at EIT Digital.

What makes the EIT Digital Accelerator different to other accelerators in Europe?

Well, first off, the EIT Digital Accelerator is for more mature startups than traditional accelerators. We’re looking for scaleups, companies that have annual revenues greater than €300K or have already raised at least €2M in funding. Our service offering is geared towards helping these scaleups prepare to raise their Series A or Series B. On that note, another big difference is that EIT Digital will not take an equity position as payment for our services. Rather, we charge a program entrance fee of €50K which is waived for winners of the Challenge, so we highly encourage digital deep techs out there to apply for this unique opportunity.

What services does the Accelerator provide?

First and foremost, companies accepted into the Accelerator get support from our team of fundraising experts. Over the course of the typical one-year commitment, our team starts by conducting fundraising readiness assessment and preparation. Then begins a process of identifying VCs and Corporates within our pan-European network whose investment goals match well with the tech and ticket size of the supported scaleup. Next, we facilitate warm introductions to the identified investors and getting the conversation started. Finally, we’re behind you all the way through the due diligence process to help you close the deal. Additionally, the Accelerator can provide business development assistance, and even access to talent via EIT Digital’s Masters and Professional School programs.

Some of our readers want to know if there are topic-specific challenges being addressed by this competition, and just how challenging this competition is. Any advice

The Challenge is a broad topic competition. That means we’re looking for any scaleup rooted in digital technologies. You can find a list of our priorities listed on our website, but previous winners range from Fintech to Industry_4.0 to Smart Cities to MedTech and much much more. Regarding the competition, I can tell you there are a lot of great scaleups applying this year, so only the standouts will be among the 20 Finalists selected to pitch in Brussels this June. The good news is that the application is quick and easy. So, I’d say;

There are no excuses, get your application in by March 28th and make sure you’re in the running!

The deadline to apply is March 28! Find out more and apply here

Editor’s Note: This post has been created in collaboration and with financial support from EIT Digital. If you’re also interested in partnering with us, just reach out.

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Patricia Allen
Patricia Allen
is the Head of Content at EU-Startups. With a background in politics, Patricia has a real passion for how shared ideas across communities and cultures can bring new initiatives and innovations for the future. She spends her time bringing you the latest news and updates of startups across Europe, and curating our social media.

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