Last week Data Pitch, a Europe-wide data accelerator, announced the successful start-ups attempting to solve its new round of challenges at a celebratory reception held at the Google Campus in London.
The company’s €7.1 million, three-year Data Pitch programme, now in its final year, is funded by the European Commission to build a stronger data economy in Europe. It sets a series of challenges, which agile start-ups seek to solve by working with data. High profile data providers from industry and the public sector help devise the challenges and allow the start-ups access to their data in order to unlock its value.
This new cohort brings the total number of Data Pitch companies to 47, each receiving up to €100K equity free funding, expert mentoring, investment opportunities, and access to data from established businesses and the public sector.
Among the high-profile data providers taking part in the programme are the UK’s national weather service, the Met Office, multinational technology giant Konica Minolta and global packaging provider Greiner. Others include Netherlands-based telecoms company Altice, the University of Dundee’s GROW Observatory, Portuguese healthcare company Jose de Mello Saude, pan-European travel community MASAI and a global financial services provider.
In addition to the specific tasks set by the Data Providers, there are seven sector challenges which have been set by industry experts and the Data Pitch partnership, which consists of the Open Data Institute (ODI), University of Southampton, Beta-I and Dawex.
They cover the key areas of Pharmaceuticals, Automotive, Smart Transport, Energy, Finance, Telecoms and Privacy and Consent, and there is also an open challenge which gives start-ups free rein to develop software, data exchange formats, wearables or registries, which can be applied over a range of industries and will either reinvent an existing process or find a resolution for a previously unsolvable problem.
Elena Simperl, Professor at the University of Southampton and Data Pitch project Director commented on the announcement saying, “We are excited to welcome the next group of start-ups to the Data Pitch programme. Our first group of 18 start-ups, which graduated in July 2018, has so far generated over €6 million of value in sales, investments and efficiencies, and is already beginning to create powerful new data-enabled business models.”
The 29 new start-ups also include: an online platform to measure and manage sustainable farming practices; a telematics company helping businesses to increase fleet efficiency and integrate electric vehicles into their operations; a company which helps optimise performance in renewable energy generation; and a start-up that lets people book thousands of physical activities across multiple venues without needing gym or sports club memberships.