The first sustainability co-creation accelerator in the Baltics, Future Hub, has closed its application process, attracting over 160 GreenTech startups from 40 countries. Fifteen selected startups, together with enterprises joining the program, Swedbank Latvija, Latvenergo, Rimi Baltic, Orkla, and Rigas Namu Parvaldnieks, will kick-off the two-month-long co-creation program on March 8.
Swedbank Latvia and Helve created Future Hub to foster the development of innovations that offer sustainable solutions and aim for a better future. While similar programs are common over Europe, this is the first co-creation accelerator in the Baltics. During the program from March 8 to May 2021, startups will be given the opportunity to work on market-leading enterprises’ current sustainability challenges.
As co-creation between 5 Hosts and 10 startups is at the core of Future Hub, Sorainen makes sure the data is protected on all fronts and the intellectual property is safe. This safety lets Future Hub members develop their pilot projects without unnecessary worry.
Accelerator’s main sustainability focus areas are reflected in applications from startups. The greatest interest (more than a quarter of the applications) was received from Smart City and Energy startups, followed by startups operating in the Circular Economy and Food sectors. Supply Chain Logistics and Mobility rank third. Organizers report that more than 160 applications from 40 countries worldwide were received. Latvian startups showed the most significant interest – 18 applications were received. Lithuania and Estonia are not far behind, with 11 applications from each country. While German, Finnish and Swedish startups also showed substantial interest, applications were also received from Australia, the United States of America, as well as Asian and African countries.
“We are thrilled to see such high interest in the program from international and local startups; it certainly gives us the freedom to select the best startups for co-creation with enterprises joining the accelerator. Such co-creation programs and other open innovation models that we at Helve work with are an excellent way to boost international competitiveness for local companies in the digital sector in particular. I am pleased that these companies that have joined the accelerator see value in the open innovation format, and I hope that others will follow the great example set,” shares Maria Rucevska, Co-founder at Helve and Future Hub Lead.
Market leaders with sustainability challenges and teams prepared to work with startups every day have already joined the accelerator. Swedbank Latvija, Latvenergo, Rimi, Orkla, and Rigas Namu Parvaldnieks are among those companies and will all present their sustainability challenges and their significance globally at the accelerator launch event. The challenges can already be seen here.