An Ukranian affordable electric enterprise truck manufacturer wins the EIT Jumpstarter urban mobility prize 

Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world, the cradle of history, democracy and arts. The Greek capital is also the heart of the ancient agora, former marketplace, the open spot where all the citizens gathered to trade, discuss and vote.  

This is exactly what over a hundred innovators did the past 30 November in Athens during the EIT Jumpstarter Grand Final, the annual EIT Community celebration of new start-ups created and the birth of innovations made in Europe. The participants, from countries located in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe, including Western Balkans, the Baltics and Ukraine, showcased their deep-tech innovations. This year 52 teams presented their ideas in nine categories – digital, food, health, energy, manufacturing, raw materials, urban mobility, New European Bauhaus and Rebuild Ukraine.  

Iliana Ivanova, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said:

The EIT Jumpstarter acceleration programme has been helping early-stage innovators develop their business ideas and launch new products on the market. I warmly congratulate all winners on their award, but also all participants. Your ideas will help us build a better, greener future. It’s particularly heartening to see the remarkable commitment of many innovators from Ukraine. The increasing engagement from the Western Balkans is also encouraging, as it aligns with our aim to bolster and unify the European innovation ecosystem.

The first winner in the Urban Mobility Category is MegoElectric from Ukraine, a solution for the production of affordable light and medium-sized electric enterprise trucks, that received an award of €10,000. Their main innovation is that their platform can be built on one assembly line, while accommodating batteries of different power, various cabs, body types and payload capacities. The platform’s re-thought design will allow the trucks to be very light-weight and energy efficient to achieve minimum price and maximum functionality. 

Another awarded idea comes from MOBILIB, a software-defined vehicle application development platform from Türkiye which won the second Urban Mobility prize. 

The third winner in this category is a wheelset protection to extend the railway axel lifecycle, ideated by RECHARGE, from Spain. 

In the urban mobility field, a total of 23 teams applied for the programme during 2023, whilst 10 made it to the Local Joint Trainings, and finally six teams arrived to the Grand Final in Greece. The other participants were Veloled from the Czech Republic, BPARCO from Croatia and TheBellBoy from Italy. During the 2023 edition of EIT Jumpstarter, 3 companies have been created in the urban mobility field already and more are expected to be registered. 

This year, for the first time, a new category emerged: ‘Rebuild Ukraine’. The top prize went to the Ukrainian team GAPPO. They provide an AgriTech B2B SaaS solution, aligned with Global G.A.P. standards, that aids in digitalising operational reporting and compliance procedures. To learn about the rest of the winners check EIT Jumpstarter’s website.  

EIT Jumpstarter’s mission is to strengthen entrepreneurship culture, support start-up creation, and contribute to building a diverse and inclusive innovation ecosystem with regular cross-thematic and cross-regional collaboration. The programme is powered by seven of EIT’s Knowledge and Innovation Communities: EIT Digital, EIT Food, EIT Health, EIT InnoEnergy, EIT Manufacturing, EIT RawMaterials and EIT Urban Mobility. The programme aims to nurture young innovators with the tools and knowledge to transform their early-stage ideas, secure the necessary funding, and, last but not least, build self-sustaining and profitable ventures. 

Pre-registration for the EIT Jumpstarter 2024 is now available at https://eitjumpstarter.eu/pre-register-for-eit-jumpstater-2024. Participation in the programme comes without any fees.  

Velo-city 2022 in Ljubljana

During the Velo-city conference 2022, that took place from the 14 until the 17 June, Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, was fully garnished with butterflies. Those represented the visual identity of the annual flagship event organised by our partner, the European Cyclist’s Federation, and that symbolises change, development and metamorphosis. Indeed, the Slovenian capital made a drastic shift in the last 10 years regarding cycling.

EIT Urban Mobility was fully present in Velo-city with a booth, that attracted those interested in our programmes and that could learn more about our mission, specially regarding Active Mobility.

During the 3 days event, different conferences brought together those involved in the policy, promotion and the provision of cycling facilities and programmes. Edwin Heesakkers, EIT Urban Mobility Innovation Hub West director, took part of the Focus on citizens, stakeholders and community plenary session on Wednesday. Heesakkers highlighted the importance to engage with youth, women and marginalised groups.

“We’re breaking the silos to make the changes together. Why? Because cities are for you, for us, for the people who live in them. And it is of utmost importance that each of you can have your say in designing the city you will live in” Edwin Heesakkers, EIT UM Innovation Hub West director

On Thursday, Anja Ilenič, EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub Slovenia representative, took part of the Engaging citizens and building the cycling community session. Ilenič introduced EIT Urban Mobility, some of the RIS Hub Slovenia initiatives, and same as Heessakkers, also stressed the importance of involving the youth in the decision making process. The same morning, EIT Urban Mobility Innovation Lifecycle officer, Manuel Crespo Yáñez, attended the conference The latest innovations from bike-sharing and micromobility, where he presented one of our projects that was also present at Velo-city, Bicification.

“The future of urban mobility is active mobility” Manuel Crespo Yáñez, EIT UM Innovation Lifecycle officer

In order to preach by example, the EIT Urban Mobility team present in Ljubljana took part in the traditional Velo-city Bike Parade, together with hundreds of other enthusiastic bike lovers.

Indeed, the conferences are designed to encourage cycling as part of daily transport and recreation. Velo-city began in 1980 in Bremen (Germany) with deep ties in the founding of the European Cyclists’ Federation. The next world cycling summit will take place in May 2023 in Liepzig. More info here