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The E&I Touchdown: Pitch Battle for Innovation


The event for entrepreneurial leaders - bridging theory and practice.

With more than 1,000 innovation projects conducted in cooperation with industry partners, the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (E&I) at WU Vienna has built strong ties between theory and practice. At the E&I Touchdown, the Institute celebrates the work of its students from diverse cooperation projects. In a mere 45 seconds each, students pitch more than 30 projects conducted over the course of the semester. The students worked on innovative challenges posed by disruptive start-ups, established companies and research organizations such as FESTO, PORR, Klarx, Varta, Wiener Linien and Fraunhofer.

Expert Jury meets Interactive Crowd Voting

Bringing together students, faculty, and business practitioners is what E&I does best. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Franke greeted 300 people sharing the Institute’s interest in Entrepreneurship and Innovation at WU, as well as almost 200 people who followed the event online. The crowd was made up of experts from the Start Up Ecosystem, Entrepreneurial Leaders who were invited to an exclusive Aperitivo, as well as students, faculty and business practitioners from a vast array of different industries.

During the event, the best pitches were selected by a jury of experts as well as the audience. The jury was composed of important business representatives: Verena Heil (viable), Kambis Kohansal-Vajargah (WKO), Viktor Penzinger (i5growth), Holger Pöchhacker (Samsung), Julia Reilinger (B&C Group), Jörg Schirnhofer (PORR), and Susanne Striegl (N26).

For determining the “Best Pitch”, the expert jury selected the best eight teams out of all pitches presented to move into the Pitch Battle for Innovation, where the crowd decided who proceeded to further rounds by voting after each battle. The winner of the Pitch Battle for Innovation was the Bachelor student team around the startup “Hydropet”. Hydropet strives to provide a solution for dogs who do not drink enough water by offering dissolvable meat-flavored tablets to increase water consumption. In the “Best Master Pitch” category, “HopOnJob” made the race. The start-up aims to easily match students searching for mini jobs with companies in need of such human capital. Furthermore, together with special guest Prof. Tony Warren from Penn State University, the best theses of the Entrepreneurship & Innovation MBA program were honored.   

The E&I Touchdown was generously supported by our partners Red Bull, Brau Union und Brindlmayer Wines. The event is in consonance with the eXplore! funding initiative founded by the B&C Private Foundation and Michael Tojner, which aims to bring the spirit of research and entrepreneurship closer together.

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