Competence Center for Sustainability Transformation and Responsibility (STaR)

European Startup Competition


Our recent Urban Jungle conference gave startups an opportunity to pitch their sustainable business ideas. And the winners are...

More than 200 applicants from 80 different cities worldwide joined our two-days online event “Urban Jungle // Sustainable Cities in the Making - Inspiration & Entrepreneurial Action”.

In addition to keynotes, panel discussions, transdisciplinary expert debates and action workshops, the conference included a European Startup Competition (Day 2), where 10 shortlisted startups were given the stage to present their sustainable business ideas to an international jury and the audience. With their business ideas, they are tackling one of two pressing urban challenges:

1. “Spin your cities around”

Linear approaches are more and more doomed to fail, and we need to go circular and find non-linear solutions for our cities. How do you put the circular economy into practice?

2. “Pimp your Grätzl*”

COVID-19 has proven that the places we live in and that surround us can have a huge impact on our personal well-being. What does it need to make urban neighborhoods more socially attractive, greener and more sustainable? (*in Vienna we lovingly call our close by neighborhoods ‘Grätzl’)

// Get to know the winning teams //

WeavAir and EET won the two business packages worth 1200€ each containing a 3h Design Thinking Workshop and 3h individual coaching on Pitching, Sales and Strategy by professional business coaches from Green Innovation Group and City Facilitator.

farmNOW won the Viennese package offered by the Vienna Business Agency worth 1000€ containing 5 hours of selected mentoring out of a pool of experts adapted to the needs of the startup. Additionally they also won the individual 1h training on nature-based solutions by experts of the University of Lorraine.

WeavAir offers proactive end-to-end software & hardware solutions for air distribution systems that prevents the spread of air contamination and infection, while saving energy and reducing operational and maintenance costs. Hereby, its software is based on algorithms that detect, diagnose and predict issues before they become serious.

EETdeveloped ‘SoulMate’, an innovative solar panel which allows its users to produce their own electricity on their balcony. The tool only needs to be plugged in and 100% of the generated electricity is fed into the user’s own power supply. On top, unused electricity will be stored and can be used when no sun is around.

farmNOWis Vienna’s first shared vertical farm, where customers can rent ready-to-grow spaces without needing to worry about the technology and know-how behind vertical farming. 

Besides the three main prizes, individual prices were also given out by BUILD partner institutions:

Worm Systems did not only win the community prize, but also the individualized prizes of 1h Training on Design by professionals at the IAAC Institute and 1h of hands-on feedback from Econick.

Ecoten received the 1h hands on feedback session from Plant-e.


[This text was contributed by STaR colleagues at RCE Vienna, Hannah Frost, Laura Hohoff, and Danijela Grubnic]

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