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PowerUp! 2018: New Urban Source of Water 'myWater' Announced Best Cleantech Solution in Slovenia

PowerUp! 2018: New Urban Source of Water 'myWater' Announced Best Cleantech Solution in Slovenia

Date: May 29th 2018

Author: Energetika.NET

Category: En.vision

Topic: Electricity , New technologies , Ecology

The PowerUp! 2018 Slovenia country final was on Monday, 29 May, at the Ljubljana Castle as part of the biggest pitch competition for startups from the cleantech sector, to select a winner from a shortlist of ten up-and-coming energy startups based in Slovenia. The winning solution is myWater, a new urban source of water that can provide clean drinking water generated out of air to the entire world’s population – every day, anytime and anywhere. Finishing in second place was SunContract with its P2P power trading platform, followed by Geoenergetika with Plain I Luminaire in third place. The winner gets to compete for prize money in the Grand Final in Prague, and will receive high-end mentoring and assistance in developing its business model. All startups will also have the opportunity to join the InnoEnergy Highway® accelerator programme.

The winner to pitch its idea in the Grand Final in Prague


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The biggest pitch competition for startups form the cleantech sector, PowerUp! is organised annually in 24 countries across Central and Eastern Europe by InnoEnergy, the leading European energy accelerator.

PowerUp! 2018 as the 4th edition of the competition comes after a highly successful edition in 2017, which paved the way for Slovenian company Mebius to compete in the Grand Final in Budapest and win an investment from InnoEnergy, said ABC Accelerator Co-founder and Head of Venture Relations, Jakob Gajšek, in his welcome speech on Monday. As in previous editions, country finals will be held in 15 countries, and the winners will be invited to pitch their ideas in the Grand Final in Prague, on 19 June.

“A platform that has accelerated more than one hundred startups since its establishment, ABC Accelerator has worked with InnoEnergy for three years now in what is a very fruitful partnership. InnoEnergy is doing an excellent job bringing together the private and public sectors in the energy industry, and we are happy to work with the accelerator again in creating this inspiring event,” said Gajšek.

Intense bootcamp sessions for the winner


Although the Slovenian runners-up had only two days to hone their pitching skills, the team at ABC Accelerator coached them to deliver strong, inspiring pitches for investors and the audience from across Europe. Seven runners-up pitched their innovative solutions in the Slovenia country final, which was held at the Ljubljana Castle on Monday. InnoEnergy was eager to congratulate this year’s winner and welcome it at even more intense bootcamp sessions in June, with trainers from ten countries, said Communications Co-ordinator at InnoEnergy Central Europe, Agata Mazepus, in her welcome speech.

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The future of energy: Polluted air as a source of clean water


The solutions unveiled by up-and-coming energy startups from Slovenia gave an insight into what the energy future of Slovenia might look like. According to the panel of judges, the best solution was myWater, a new urban source of water that can provide clean drinking water to the entire world’s population – every day, anytime and anywhere. Using a device that generates water out of air, people worldwide will be able to access clean water on the streets at a competitive price of 20 Euro cents per 500 ml. The first goal of the startup is to set up the devices at EXPO 2020 Dubai.

The second prize was awarded to SunContract, an innovative energy startup that has launched the world’s first peer-to-peer (P2P) platform for electricity retail markets. The platform will enable higher profits to electricity producers, and lower prices to buyers. Taking third place was Geoenergetika with Plain I Luminaire, a sophisticated solution for a new look in urban environment. Rather than just a light fitting, this is an urban lighting icon.

Other presentations in the country final included:

  1. ETOS Solutions, a startup that provides companies with business and IT solutions, is an innovator in developing digital interfaces for system integration and the construction of interoperable data networks. The main product of the company, ETOS Smart Buildings Platform, is based on its own solutions for user management, building maintenance, electronic investment decision making, and mass billing with the ability to manage multiple payments across varying key divisions.
  2. iENERGY (beta version: www.i-energy.info), a digital, educational awareness-raising platform focusing on flexibility and security of low-carbon supply, was developed by EN-LITE, a non-profit society for strengthening energy literacy. iENERGY will help meet EU’s ambitious goals in decarbonising the energy industry and society, where informed EU citizens can play a key role (as prosumers).
  3. ACSM is a startup proposing a solution that helps cut energy consumption in buildings, increase comfort, and enhance the user experience. An advanced building energy management system is designed to optimise energy consumption, costs and comfort, taking into account the building model and building utility system model, weather forecast, and users’ behaviour.
  4. Energy Capacity Plus is a startup providing an energy storage solution. Based on unique materials (specific types of carbon nanotubes), the technology enables more than five-fold increase in battery capacity to allow for twice the normal range of an electric car and smartphone battery life of up to one week.

Where there’s energy there’s potential


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The audience was excited not just to see the pitches by the competing startups, but also to hear from Andy Baynes, a former executive at Apple, Nest, Google, an investor in innovation and start-ups, and one of the ABC Accelerator mentors. When asked what he looks for in startups when deciding whether or not they have what it takes to make it, Baynes replied by listing three key indicators: “The key indicator is the people, the founders as well as the entire team. You need not just talent and engineering expertise, but above all ambition and energy. What also matters is the size of the team and the quality of market entry. And last but not least, timing: you need to ask yourself whether the market is truly ready for a disruption.”

Startups can be a big asset to large companies


Which areas are still ripe for disruption in the energy sector? “Opportunities are opening up at all levels, in energy production and transmission as well as customer relationship management,” said Baynes, adding that “for startups that are faced with the lack of capital, potential can mainly be found on the demand side. The supply side is better suited for the startups that are not dealing with this kind of challenges. Large companies and corporations can truly benefit from startups as they can find a way for them to reach and engage with their customers. An average company gets only 4 minutes of customer’s attention, and this is not enough if you want to expand. Companies need to start communicating with their customers in a different way, and startups can help them do this.”

Andy Baynes was one of the members of the panel in the PowerUp! Slovenia country final. Other members included State Secretary at the Slovenian infrastructure ministry, Klemen Potisek, President of WEC MC Slovenia and advisor to the CEO of Slovenia’s gas TSO Plinovodi, Franc Žlahtič, Nina Vodopivec of the Slovenian energy company Petrol, and Michał Kraszewski, Business Creation Manager at InnoEnergy.

EUR 30,000 for the absolute winner


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The Grand Final in Prague will award the best three projects in this year’s PowerUp! competition. The third place brings EUR 5000 in prize money, the second place EUR 10,000, while the absolute winner will receive EUR 30,000, an invitation to join the prestigious InnoEnergy Highway® accelerator with investment of up to EUR 150,000, and a chance to work with top mentors, make new international business contacts, and receive media coverage.

About PowerUp!


PowerUp! is the biggest pitch competition for startups from the cleantech sector, organised annually by InnoEnergy, the leading European energy accelerator. The competition is growing year after year: in 2017, it received more than 150 submissions for energy projects from startups from 24 Central and Eastern European countries. The main area of interest of this year’s 4th edition is the energy and cleantech sector, but solutions such as mobility, cybersecurity, smart city and technologies limiting the emission of harmful dust particles into the atmosphere are also included, provided they have a prototype and the team.



This article is available also in Slovene.



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