KAROS: The car-sharing app for commuting to work arrives in Vitoria

  • Karos transforms empty car seats into a new mode of public transport
  • Karos lands in Vitoria-Gasteiz with a pilot experience co-funded by EIT Urban Mobility

Vitoria-Gasteiz, September 2023 – Karos was born in 2014 in France and has services in Denmark, Germany, and Spain. It is a leading European app for car sharing between home and work, and since its launch, it has made 8 million journeys, avoiding around 13,600 tonnes of CO2.

The app is now coming to Vitoria-Gasteiz, thanks to a project developed by EIT Urban Mobility, to reduce the thousands of journeys from the city centre to the industrial estates every morning. The Mobility survey of industrial parks revealed that more than half of the workers would share a car to get to work. Until now, this was only possible with an acquaintance.

Carpooling solution for daily commuting in suburban areas

EIT Urban Mobility, in collaboration with the Basque city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, and our silver partner, Karos, we plan to create a carpooling network for commuters of the city who have no other option than driving a car, adapting our carpooling app to the Spanish market and involving local employers.

The aim of the project is helping hundreds of companies to reduce their carbon footprint: if fewer cars exist for the same workers, there will be less pollution. Car sharing is currently the most sustainable and efficient way to get to work: you reduce emissions, save time and spend less money.

What is Karos?

Karos lands in Vitoria-Gasteiz with a pilot experience co-funded by EIT Urban Mobility, an initiative of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union, as a result of one of our “Small Calls“.
The project is aimed at companies to reduce the carbon footprint of their staff and offer them more comfortable journeys. The objective is to minimise overall commuting emissions and save time and money.

Drivers create the route in the app and wait for others to sign up. For each journey, the driver will receive at least €1.5 for each person they transport, and passengers select a route and travel to work for free. Each passenger saves time and pays nothing.

The app is available in Basque, Spanish, and English. It was launched in 2014 and is already present in European countries such as France, Germany, and Denmark.

Karos is Silver partner at EIT Urban Mobility Innovation Hub South.
More info available here: https://www.karos-mobility.com/

REACTIVITY project in Braga challenges citizens to embrace sustainable mobility

The Municipality of Braga has launched the “Reactivity Braga – Diversity and Sustainability” initiative to encourage Braga residents to embrace more sustainable, inclusive, and eco-friendly transportation options. In return, citizens can accrue points to exchange for discounts at local businesses.

This represents an innovative intermodal urban mobility project supported and promoted by EIT Urban Mobility, in collaboration with Braga Urban Transport (TUB) and the Business Association of Braga. The project hinges on a reward and gamification system, where users are incentivised to choose public transportation, bicycles, electric scooters, or walking for their commutes.

This approach makes the mobility experience more appealing and enjoyable, motivating citizens to adopt more mindful and sustainable transportation practices.

The project began on 10 August and is slated to run for three months. To participate, Braga residents need to complete a specific form. Upon registration approval, users can access an online platform to track their performance, view accumulated points, and observe their contributions to promoting sustainable mobility in Braga.

During the project’s presentation press conference, Olga Pereira, Braga’s City Councillor and President of the Board of Directors of TUB, remarked that this initiative is part of ongoing efforts to transform the mobility habits of Braga residents toward sustainability: “Reactivity Braga follows the success of last year’s Bicification project, which inspired us to apply for this new project in partnership with TUB. Reactivity relies on buses as the core component but also encourages walking, cycling, and scooting.”

 

“The great thing about the REACTIVITY project is its intermodal approach, which combines different modes of transport to offer citizens flexible and convenient options for their daily journeys,” explained Olga Pereira, Braga City Council councillor. By integrating public transport with bicycles and electric scooters, the project extends the reach of public transport stops, providing citizens with more comprehensive and accessible mobility throughout the city. “The municipality remains committed to working in favour of more sustainable mobility in the municipality, which benefits everyone’s quality of life,” said the councillor.

REACTIVITY promotes sustainable mobility through a unique reward and gamification component. By participating in the project, users can accumulate points and achieve goals by opting for more sustainable modes of transport.  With the project’s rewards and gamification mechanism, users can win vouchers, which can be discounted at various commercial establishments that are partners of the initiative. Around 30 shops are already involved, but the aim is to extend this range to a more significant number of establishments. “We started out with around 30 shops, but given the extraordinary receptiveness of local businesses, the aim is to increase the number of shops involved significantly,” said Rui Marques, AEB’s director-general.

Local traders joining the REACTIVITY project represents a unique opportunity to boost their businesses and establishments. By joining the network of partners that accept vouchers generated by users, shops have access to greater visibility and attract customers. In this way, traders not only benefit from increased customer flow, but also contribute to a more sustainable and dynamic city.
Over the next three months, Braga’s people can participate in this pioneering initiative. Through the online platform dedicated to the project, citizens can monitor their performance, accumulate points and check their contribution to more sustainable mobility in Braga.

About REACTIVITY

The REACTIVITY project rewards public transport and active mobility to reduce emissions; backs data-driven urban; and traffic planning and engaging with citizens, thus helping cities promote sustainable mobility and intramodality while discouraging car dependence.

This project meets the needs of city managers for digital tools to enable urban multi-modal and multi-source mobility planning, providing a solution to support intermodal transport, including public transport, cycling, walking, kick-scooters, and car-pooling. The mobility monitoring support is achieved through an active mobility plugin integrated in a multi-data source web dashboard.

The solutions will be implemented and tested in Braga (Portugal) and Lecce (Italy) during the second half of 2023. The expected outcomes of REACTIVITY are an increased share of public transport (+6%) and active mobility (+ 15%) and the reduction of kilometres driven by private cars (-2.5 M) and of CO2 emissions (-320 tons) in each city.

Discover more: reactivity-eit.eu

 

Lisbon among the semi-finalists for the European capital of innovation award

  • The European Innovation Council (EIC) announced the 12 cities from 10 countries that have advanced to the semi-final stage of the ninth edition of the iCapital Awards. The cities aim to become the 2023 European Capital of Innovation or the European Rising Innovative City.

  • Supported by the European Innovation Council (EIC) under Horizon Europe, the prize recognises cities’ role in shaping the local innovation ecosystem and promoting game-changing innovation.

The city of Lisbon has taken another step in the race to become the European Capital of Innovation 2023 by being chosen as one of the six semi-finalists for this honour awarded by the European Commission. The Portuguese capital is now competing with two other Ukrainian cities – Kiev and Lviv -, two Turkish cities – Istanbul and Basaksehir – and one Polish city, Warsaw.

Lisbon’s application, presented under the title Lisboa Unicorn Capital, is based on the idea of the city as a “home and space for all those who believe, take risks and innovate, undertake and endeavour to make the impossible possible, while at the same time contributing to improving the community’s quality of life”, says a statement from the municipality. To this end, the city presented the jury with a dossier of the work carried out so far, particularly in the environment, culture, economy, and mobility.

For the Mayor of Lisbon, Carlos Moedas, this choice reflects the city’s commitment to establishing itself as a Unicorn Factory: “Innovation is fundamental to the growth, competitiveness, and development of our society. Lisbon is today a recognised stage in innovation and has had an enormous capacity to attract companies and professionals from all over the world. Being part of this selection by the European Commission is proof and recognition of the intense work done to be at the forefront and place Lisbon as a city of innovation.”

The European Capital of Innovation Awards (iCapital) was established in 2014 to reward those European cities that are courageous enough to open their governance practices to experimentation, to boost innovation, to be a role model for other cities, and to push the boundaries of technology for the benefit of their citizens.

In addition to the monetary reward, the prize brings high visibility through renewed public interest and increased media coverage.

Past winners include Barcelona (2014), Amsterdam (2016), Paris (2017), Athens (2018), Nantes (2019), Leuven (2020), Dortmund (2021), Vantaa (2021), Aix-Marseille Provence Metropole (2022) and Haarlem (2022).


(Original article published at Smart Cities Cidades Sustentaives)

EIT Urban Mobility commitment with Portugal’s sustainable objectives.

Portugal has been making noteworthy progress in urban mobility in recent years. The country has set ambitious goals and objectives, driven by the motivation to reduce the environmental impact of transportation and create more sustainable cities. One of the primary objectives of Portugal’s urban mobility policies is to reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainable transportation. To achieve this, the country has set a target to have 40% of all urban trips made by walking, cycling, or public transport by 2030. This goal is part of Portugal’s National Energy and Climate Plan, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030.

The motivation behind Portugal’s push for sustainable urban mobility is to create more liveable and healthy cities for its residents. The country’s urban areas are among Europe’s most congested and polluted, significantly impacting public health. By promoting sustainable transportation, Portugal aims to reduce traffic congestion, improve air quality, and create more pleasant urban environments.

Portuguese cities are working towards achieving these objectives. Portugal’s capital city, Lisbon, has been working on making its transportation more sustainable for several years. The city has implemented a bike-sharing program, a car-sharing service, and an electric tram system. It has also invested in a network of bike lanes and pedestrian paths, which has helped increase cycling and walking in the city. Cities like Porto, Braga or Cascais has made significant investments in public transportation.

How is EIT Urban Mobility supporting Portugal’s objectives?

Since 2021, 39 projects have been implemented in the country to promote innovation and foster collaboration in urban mobility, two of which are particularly noteworthy: RAPTOR and #ChallengeMyCity.

Rapid Applications for Transport (RAPTOR) is a competition that swiftly creates and tests solutions to niche urban mobility challenges. Participants compete to provide the most innovative, feasible, and impactful solutions. The RAPTOR programme was implemented in 2022 in the city of Cascais with successful results, helping to solve three challenges identified by the city.  

#ChallengeMyCity is a programme enabling European cities to tackle their most pressing urban challenges by testing market-ready innovative mobility solutions.  Its objective is to test the best solutions through a six-month pilot and evaluates their social, economic, and environmental impact and estimate long-term integration into the city’s mobility strategy, to make mobility more sustainable and accessible for all.

The programme will be implemented in 2023 in Braga, which has just won the European Mobility Week 2022 prize for its remarkable activities in promoting sustainable mobility and continues to take steps towards improving its urban mobility ecosystem. Through #ChallengeMyCity programme, it is seeking innovative solutions to face four identified challenges. A total of 240.000 € will be invested in testing these solutions.  https://portocanal.sapo.pt/noticia/326280

But in addition to these two main programmes, other projects have been developed in the country thanks to our collaborative work, resulting in an investment of more than 1.5 million from EIT Urban Mobility since 2021. The city of Lisbon becomes one of the most illustrative examples, with more of 16 projects implemented. 

As Portugal continues to prioritize sustainable and innovative urban mobility solutions, programmes like RAPTOR and #ChallengeMyCity will continue to play a significant role in driving progress and promoting collaboration.

Why we invested in Dreamwaves? – A spatial audio technology serving vulnerable commuters

Nowadays, a new generation of sector-agnostic VC (Venture Capital) funds is emerging to laser-focus on solutions advocating for inclusivity. This trend follows the political agenda of decision-makers backed by a vast amount of data collected in the past decade. As showcased in multiple studies, they serve researchers and thought leaders when pointing out gaps and deficiencies existing in the current mobility systems. Technological leap with the high pace in which urban areas grow makes them an incredibly attractive, albeit competitive space for solution providers where implementation speed and economic efficiency naturally gain the position of urging priorities.

Although it is true that competition translates into quality and eventually leads to cutting down on emissions while improving the quality of life, so-called smart cities are often overseeing vulnerable groups and minorities with needs that are different from the regular user profile. In this article, a hi-tech software solution supporting the blind and visually impaired will be discussed.

How does Dreamwaves work?  

As an organization bridging all types of stakeholders under the pan-European roof, the special mandate of EIT Urban Mobility is to be vocal about the mobility-related needs of vulnerable minorities and lead the peloton of actors working on safe and inclusive public spaces.

Dreamwaves, an Austrian start-up founded and led by Hugo Furtado, Liliana Calapez, Elke Mattheiss, and Lukas Zimmermann strengthened the company’s equity portfolio with the right tool to work on this agenda. Namely, a software employing augmented reality technology to unlock the unique sound navigation experience to its users, making them feel safe and welcome on the busy streets. With Dreamwaves, the blind and visually impaired can navigate their surroundings with greater confidence and independence, creating a more equitable environment for all.

Why we invested in Dreamwaves? 

What sparked EIT Urban Mobility investor´s attention and dispelled potential doubts? Let´s zoom at a simple 3xT test applied in this case as a part of standard qualification analysis.

  1. Timing

It all started with a spotted opportunity and a multi-billion market that awaited to be unleashed. As he later admitted during one of the off-track conversations, Hugo Furtado – CEO of Dreamwaves – was always a passion-driven entrepreneur centered on new technologies and out-of-the-box innovations. To be crazy or not to be at all. Following the music and gaming industries racing solitary for both hardware and software improvements to take the sound experience to the next level, he already saw a brand-new use case. It later resulted with the thought that it pays off to look right when everyone goes left. And talking about the majority, all of us interact with audio content while commuting or during physical outdoor activities. It is nothing strange considering the fact that – following Eurostat´s data (1) – in 2019 an average commuting time oscillated around 25 minutes. However, as explained with greater detail in different study (2), for one-fifth of the population it could be extended to over 90 minutes per day.

To put it briefly: headphones, of all sizes and kinds, are nowadays an extension of our bodies. Extension that might be more than a source of entertainment, especially for the blind and visually impaired. Dreamwaves decided to be the voice of blind people, making them see the world through their ears.

2. Technology

In principle, the whole concept of screen- and hands-free navigation offered via waveOut can be stressed in three steps. Once the destination is selected and the journey kicks-off, virtual waypoints are being placed in the real world around the user. On the fly. The goal is to reach them and to make it happen, the user must hear them. That is when the sound is activated. It can be compared to a phone call when the ringtone allows us to locate the device. The closer we are, by nature the louder becomes the sound. The same law applies to the Dreamwaves´ software. As soon as the checkpoint is reached, the next waypoint is placed, and the voice switches its location. Again and over, following the beat of a gentle drum until the doormat. Or one´s favourite bookshop.

As simple and naïve the above may sound, the way-finding solution enclosed in the app requires the latest augmented reality toolkits, global positioning advances and machine learning methods behind the scenes. Additional challenges lie in the accuracy that in the busy streets full of static obstacles and dynamic objects must be ultimately reliable. Understanding the state-of-the art of computer vision methods to determine the location of the user in real time helps to overcome this barrier.

Connected to the multi-object environment but being a separate problem class is omnipresent noise pollution. As the solution is hardware-agnostic, meaning that no special upfront investment in wearables is required, it is crucial to ensure that the best experience is provided, even with some quality being lost. This trade-off is a fair price for making the solution truly open and accessible to everyone.

3. Tests & Testimonials

While Dreamwaves is changing the way people understand and sense their locations, the competent and interdisciplinary team navigate itself company´s growth by hearing to the group of early-adopters and tech geeks. Hundreds of individuals were involved in the design and testing phases, with the others feeding engineers with further, post-launch testimonials.

The best thing we ever heard from a user was: “It’s a bit like seeing. The fact that I constantly can hear the direction I have to go to is a great advantage!”. This made us really proud, and also gave us the feeling that we are in the right direction. On the tough days, thinking about this and other pieces of feedback, really keeps us motivated and going!” – said Hugo Furtado, the CEO of Dreamwaves.

Besides feedback, interactions are constantly feeding the team with new ideas, because the real beauty of every journey lies in additional opportunities being unfolded on the way. For Dreamwaves, these are cavernous cycling and travelling markets where hundreds of millions of users are looking for tricks to make their lives easier and their urban trips saver. Is there anyone out there who didn’t manoeuvre the bike with one hand while staring at phone maps?

Future Mobility: amplifying the voice of inclusivity

Accompanied by the story of Hugo, Liliana, Elke, and Lukas this is the space to reflect all the barriers that still must be overcome to eradicate the gap between the blind or visually impaired and the rest sensing the surrounding with sight. With its first step and team efforts, Dreamwaves points to the direction we should look at technology. Its proper incorporation into urban and suburban areas can significantly enrich the existing toolkit, making the lenses through which smart cities are defined adjusted to the needs of commuting minorities. Only then we will be entitled to call streets inclusive and open spaces.

Do you want to know more about Dreamwaves’s mission and its solutions?

Visit the company website and LinkedIn. You can also further explore their product via EIT UM Marketplace.

This article is part of Why we invested? series presenting EIT Urban Mobility equity portfolio.


About the author

Mateusz Kaluza – investments analyst at EIT Urban Mobility, passionate about data and active mobility. Scouting for impact-driven innovations enabling shift towards citizen-oriented transportation systems. Contact at: mateusz.kaluza@eiturbanmobility.eu

Supporting literature:

Why we invested in ProperGate? – The smart solution to deal with logistics of complex construction sites and suppliers

When thinking about the scope of urban mobility, there is always a vertical that pops into our minds and this is city logistics. However, what fits within the concept of logistics is never too obvious. Construction tech is a rapidly growing industry that has the potential to transform the way we build and manage our cities, and yes, it’s an industry directly related with urban logistics.

EIT Urban Mobility has made a ground-breaking investment in ProperGate, a Polish construction tech start-up that has become the first successful investment in Poland for the organisation.

How does ProperGate work?  

ProperGate’s innovative platform aims to digitize and streamline the construction logistics management process, reducing the time, cost, and environmental impact of construction projects. With ProperGate’s platform, builders and suppliers can track and manage their deliveries to construction projects in real time, identify and address issues more quickly and efficiently, and reduce the need for paper-based documentation.

ProperGate addresses the needs of all potential customers in the construction supply chain, from real estate developers and investors to subcontractors and suppliers, all having a customized profile to sign up for within the platform. And yet its direct customers are not the only ones to benefit from the results of the solution, as the use of ProperGate’s innovation indirectly contributes to the development of the professional construction sector by adding tools and methods that will have to be acquired by young professionals.

Why we invested in ProperGate? 

Construction site logistics can be a significant pain point not only for the constructors but also for the surrounding city and the people that live in it.

Give it a thought; the usually limited space around an urban construction site can make it difficult to manoeuvre large construction vehicles and equipment, leading to potential safety hazards and logistical challenges for the delivery of materials and supplies; in already densely populated areas, heavy traffic around the construction site can cause more delays and disruptions than normal and often become a significant source of disruptive noise, having severe effects in the health and well-being of citizens. On top of all these challenges, construction sites also contribute to polluting the city, with negative environmental impacts ranging from air and water pollution to soil contamination. Therefore, managing construction site logistics effectively is crucial to minimizing the negative impact of construction on the surrounding urban environment.

The onboarding of ProperGate into EIT Urban Mobility’s equity portfolio is testament of a threefold purpose: First, as its first successful investment in a Polish registered company, EIT Urban Mobility proofs to have fruitfully taken measures to ensure that funds are directed towards the RIS[1] region; second, as EIT Urban Mobility’s first investment in the construction tech industry, the KIC shows its commitment to explore and boost the endless potential of the urban mobility meaning; and finally, by supporting the gender-diverse C-level team that leads ProperGate, EIT Urban Mobility is also backing its mission of promoting female entrepreneurship.

Do you want to know more about ProperGate’s mission and its solutions?

Visit the company website and LinkedIn. 

This article is part of Why we invested? series presenting EIT Urban Mobility equity portfolio.

[1] Regional Innovation Scheme


This is an article of the series Why we invested in? Written by Anna Burgués, RIS Officer at EIT Urban Mobility.

Why we invested in YUP? –  The (R)evolution in Micromobility Infrastructure

With the boom of new personal mobility devices (PMDs) in recent years, E-scooters are now one of the fastest-growing micromobility solutions in Europe, which has a unique potential to develop a world-leading ecosystem promoting sustainable urban mobility, with unparalleled potential to create new jobs, reduce air pollution, accelerate the transition toward climate targets. 

A new digital, green, and equitable economy fosters tremendous investment opportunities in both private (e.g., renewable energy installations or electric vehicle charging stations) and public facilities (e.g., digitalisation of electricity and mobility systems). To address this, Barcelona-based YUP is breaking the barriers for better safety parking & charging infrastructures, much needed to cover increasing micromobility vehicles demand. YUP aims to revolutionise the micromobility smart infrastructure, becoming the first European one-stop-shop provider for cities and corporates. 

How does YUP work?  

Through an iMaaS business model, YUP offers infrastructure network within cities and companies that has now secured more than 170 new customers during the first 24 months. Thanks to their sound financial management and a top-notch team, YUP has already reached financial break-even.  

Beyond the value that YUP already brings to the urban mobility landscape through charging stations, lies a colorful roadmap of products and features for both municipalities and corporates with high high-performance capabilities.  

The concept of home is a hard one for YUP. With more than 170 projects and 2.500 units delivered during the last 2 years, YUP has one key market: Spain. Currently, more than 40% of their business comes from Spain, and another 60% from 3 other international markets: France, Germany, and Greece. 

With a vast experience designing and manufacturing micromobility innovative charging solutions, YUP has the ambition to become European leaders in smart infrastructure development for cities. 

Following the acquisition of Zicler in 2022, YUP is planning to double their team in 2023 (recruiting the positions of C-levels and other key positions) and expand/ scale to 5 countries and preparing the expansion in USA, with the goal to deliver up to 10.000 new units and double the number of new clients (split between B2B and B2G). 

Why we invested in YUP? 

This is why, as an impact-driven investor, we believe that EIT Urban Mobility shall add value to its portfolio companies in many forms.  

Capitalizing on the network effects, EIT Urban Mobility has supported YUP on leveraging real sales opportunities through the largest European mobility network for YUP to scale more quickly and gain new consumers at little or no cost. 

The second component of our collaboration is that YUP has detailed plans for what they want to build and execute next and why. In our capacity as the largest European mobility ecosystem, EIT Urban Mobility will play a pivotal role in facilitating ongoing investment regulation, positively driven by Next Gen Funds. The current EU horizon for funding opportunities in transport and infrastructure represents in excess of EUR 1.100M ongoing from 2021 to 2027. 

From EIT Urban Mobility, we are truly convinced YUP will be able to onboard the most talented urban mobility enthusiasts thanks to their open, respectful and passionate company’s culture and values. 

The ultimate goal of raising capital isn’t only about cash. It is also about the new shareholders’ expertise, knowledge and network. The value generated by EIT Urban Mobility has facilitated a smooth cooperation and dynamics with YUP, and we are convinced that both new and existing investors will be loyal supporters of the company in future endeavors. YUP is well on their way to becoming a key player in the new global micromobility infrastructure industry. 

Do you want to know more about YUP’s mission and its solutions?

Visit the company website and LinkedIn.  

This article is part of Why we invested? series presenting EIT Urban Mobility equity portfolio.


This is an article of the series Why we invested in? Written by Pablo Garrido, Investment Principal at EIT Urban Mobility.

Why We Invested in SHQUARED – The Ultimate Space Sharing Platform

Urbanization is a global trend that is rapidly accelerating, with over half of the world’s population now living in urban areas. SHQUARED contributes to more sustainable urban development by maximizing the use of existing infrastructure and reducing the need for new buildings or parking structures. That´s why we invested in SHQARED!

According to the United Nations, the world’s urban population is expected to reach 68% by 2050, up from 55% in 2018. This rapid growth of urban populations has led to increasing demand for space, resulting in a shortage of land for residential, commercial, and industrial activities. In the context of urban logistics, space is a critical resource that is often limited and expensive.

Micro hubs are a potential solution to this issue, providing smaller and more strategically located logistics facilities that can reduce the need for larger distribution centres and improve last-mile delivery efficiency. And SHQAURED is the answer!

How does SHQUARED contribute to solve this issue? 

Finding suitable micro hubs in urban areas can be challenging, especially for small businesses. This is where SHQUARED’s space-sharing platform comes in, providing a practical and sustainable solution to the urban space shortage. The platform enables space owners to rent out and share their underutilized spaces, such as warehouses, garages, or parking lots, as micro hubs for urban logistic companies.

By sharing spaces, urban logistics companies can reduce their carbon footprint and contribute to a more sustainable urban logistics ecosystem. Considering that according to a report by the International Transport Forum, micro hubs can reduce delivery distances by up to 40%, resulting in lower delivery costs and reduced congestion and emissions, this is of utmost importance.

Another point to consider is that, according to a study by McKinsey & Company found that logistics and distribution centres occupy approximately 12% of urban land, while generating up to 30% of total urban traffic. Furthermore, the same study found that logistics and delivery costs account for up to 30% of the final price of goods and services in urban areas. And Shquared also plays a role in it, as it is currently working on a project together with the City of Munich to develop an online B2B Market Place for City Logistics Spaces tailored to the needs of the city. In the next months, the team plans to fully roll out their solution in Germany and subsequently in other European cities.

Christian Kink, Co-Founder and CTO at SHQUARED: “Working with the city of Munich on this important topic and with the great support of EIT Urban Mobility allows us to use our space sharing expertise and platform infrastructure to solve an urgent infrastructural problem in Munich and other urban areas. After adjusting our platform and processes to logistic-related requirements we are eager to offer this solution to other cities in Germany and Europe.”

Do you want to know more about SHQUARED’s mission and its solutions?

Visit the company website and LinkedIn.  

This article is part of Why we invested? series presenting EIT Urban Mobility equity portfolio.


This is an article of the series Why we invested in? Written by Johannes Kirschner, Investment & Portfolio Manager at EIT Urban Mobility, expressed his enthusiasm for SHQUARED: “I’m thrilled to support SHQUARED’s diverse and motivated team as they work towards making a positive impact on urban logistics in cities. I believe their space-sharing platform has the potential to offer a practical and sustainable solution to urban space shortage, enabling more efficient and cost-effective use of existing infrastructure.”

Supporting literature and sources:

Open Innovation Call for Proposals

At EIT Urban Mobility, our mission is to accelerate change towards a sustainable mobility model for liveable urban spaces. In the current context of climate emergency, our objective is to support our community of innovators to develop solutions that help mitigate and adapt to climate change and, at the same time, are able to improve the quality of life of our cities, create jobs and strengthen the European mobility sector.

To this end, the primary emphasis of our Innovation Programme for 2023-25 is to radically advance commercially viable solutions/services/products that support this mission and those goals.

Since 2020, we have a growing portfolio of projects to support agile and collaborative mobility projects across Europe. We work with innovators in city administrations, research organisations and businesses, to strengthen the urban mobility ecosystem.

The focus of our 2024 Call is on three Challenge Areas: Sustainable City Logistics, Energy and Mobility, and Future Mobility. Whilst addressing these challenges, we seek proposals that tackle the most pressing issues facing public, private or hybrid mass transit providers. Nonetheless, we remain open to excellent proposals from other providers within the urban mobility arena.

In this Call, we align with the aims and objectives of the Mission on Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities. The EU Mission challenges cities to accelerate their digital, energy and mobility transformations through urban mobility experimentation supporting the race to Net Zero. Moreover, we support active alignment with the European Technology Platform – ALICE in relation to the Sustainable City Logistics challenge area.

We look forward to broadening our partnership and our portfolio of entrepreneurial innovation projects.

Main features of the call (aim and challenges)

The overall purpose of the Innovation Programme is to resolve challenges facing European cities in improving citizens’ lives, by bringing innovations to market. We support projects that are close-to-market, capable of testing new solutions in real-life city demonstrations and that can attain commercial viability by the end of the project. 

The EIT Urban Mobility Business Plan 2023-2025 defines nine Challenge Areas that stem from over 250+ urban mobility challenges identified by cities across Europe. For this Call, three Challenge Areas are prioritised:

  • Sustainable City Logistics
  • Mobility & Energy
  • Future Mobility

Within these Challenge Areas, we encourage the participation of public, private or hybrid mass transit providers to drive pan-European innovation, testing and validating of new transport services and improved operations.

We also align with the  objectives of the EU Mission on Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities. As such any of the 112 cities committed to Net Zero climate neutrality by 2030 are encouraged to apply. Transport and mobility are one of the main sectors cities must address to reach climate neutrality. In alignment with the Cities Mission’s cross-sectoral and demand-led approach, we support citiesto act to deliver on their commitments and action plans laid out in their Climate City Contracts.

Contact details

Type of contactTeamEmail
For legal, financial and administrative procedures, including questions about PLAZA submission toolProgramme Management Office (PMO)pmo@eiturbanmobility.eu
For content, topic-related related questionsInnovation Teaminnovationcall2024@eiturbanmobility.eu

Events-Webinars

EIT Urban Mobility hosted online information sessions from 17 to 20 of April 2023 focused on the Call content, the challenges, and requirements, as well as on the general procedures, such as the submission and evaluation process and the PLAZA submission tool:

Call summary

Call for Proposals Main Features
Key dates of the Call calendar[1]Call opening: 6 April 2023
Call closure: 7 June 2023 at 17:00 CET
Eligibility and admissibility check: June 2023
External evaluation of proposals (1st stage): July-August 2023
Invitations to hearings (2nd Stage): September 2023
Hearings: October 2023
Communication of results: October-November 2023
Tentative start of the projects: 1 January 2024
Total estimated EIT Funding allocated to this Call8M EUR
Link to the submission portal PLAZA platform will be available as of 20 April 2023
List of documents to be submittedApplication form available on the PLAZA platform, including Annexes (Business model canvas and Financial plan)
A declaration from the actual city/municipal government only if applicable (see section 5)
List of documents to take into considerationCall Manual
EIT Urban Mobility Strategic Agenda 2021-2027
List of KPIs for Innovation
Guidelines for Applicants
Eligibility of expenditure
Appeal procedure
Project Implementation Handbook
Financial Support Agreement template
Horizon Europe Model Grant Agreement
Business model canvas template
Financial plan template
FAQ
Annex: Comercial Readiness Level
Market Readiness Evaluation Programme (MRE Programme)
Short summary of the topics to be addressedSustainable City Logistics: operational, shared or brokerage services, business modelling, technological innovations in urban logistics.

Energy and Mobility: the uptake of zero-emission and clean energy solutions that decarbonise urban transport provision.

Future Mobility: New digital devices or products capable of improving how we live, work, and move within cities.
Evaluation criteria (1st stage)For the Strategic Fit evaluation:
– Contribution to EIT Urban Mobility Strategic Objectives
– Aligned with the specific
– Call requirements under which the proposal was submitted.
– Has the potential to achieve the expected outcomes and impacts

For the full proposal evaluation:
– Excellence: novelty and innovation
– Impact: social, economic, financial, and general sustainability
– Quality and efficiency of the implementation, including sound financial
management.
Portfolio selection criteria (2nd stage)Outcomes of the hearing, pitch and responses
– Business intelligence, including applicants track record and viability
– EU dimension
– Portfolio fit, complementarity of the proposal and relevance of the
partnership

[1] Please note that this calendar is indicative. Dates might be subject to slight changes.

Why we invested in MIOO Cycling? – bicycle service at your place

Bicycles are a popular, convenient, and sustainable mode of transportation, but they are also vulnerable to theft and damage. With the increasing popularity of cycling as a mode of transportation, the demand for infrastructure and support for bike riders is on the rise. A solution was needed, and MIOO is the answer.

MIOO Cycling is an app and platform offering smooth bike ownership throughout the bike’s lifecycle. It has been developed by a start-up which is part of our community. The app allows cyclists to keep track of their bike’s service history, book repair and maintenance services, and register the bike in the antitheft and insurance programme.  Additionally, the app’s potential for environmental impact aligns with the growing trend of sustainable investing. By investing in these innovative platforms, investors can support a more sustainable and equitable transportation system. 

How does MIOO work?  

The Swedish bike repair app is making at-home bike services easier than ever. You simply book a time and location through the app and a MIOO Bike Buddy will come to service or repair your bike wherever you are. It provides a range of services, including maintenance, repair, and accessories, making it easy for riders to keep their bikes in top condition. The insurance component protects against theft and damage, giving riders peace of mind. In the event of theft, the app’s antitheft programme enables the tracking of stolen bicycles in real time, increasing the chances of recovery. With MIOO Cycling, cyclists can feel confident and secure, knowing that their bikes are protected and well-maintained.

The difference between MIOO and all the many other mobile bike repairs that exist is that MIOO is not a bike repair mechanic scheme – MIOO is possible thanks to bike buddies. A bike buddy is a private individual that is passionate about bikes and know how to fix and maintain a bike on a every day need basis. Could be your neighbor or someone working next door. 

What are the benefits of MIOO?

Firstly, the app’s maintenance services promote the longevity and efficiency of bicycles. Well-maintained bikes require less energy to operate, reducing the overall carbon footprint of cycling as a mode of transportation. 

Secondly, the app’s insurance coverage encourages the use of bicycles as a primary means of transportation. By offering protection against theft and damage, the app provides reassurance to bike riders who may otherwise be hesitant to rely on their bikes for everyday use. 

Finally, as more people use the app and platform, the demand for bike-friendly infrastructure may increase, leading to a more sustainable and equitable transportation system. 

EIT Urban Mobility believes MIOO Cycling has the potential to revolutionize the cycling industry, making it more accessible and convenient for all. We look forward to seeing how this start-up develops and the positive impact it has on the cycling community.

Do you want to know more about #MIOO Cycling’s mission and its solutions? 
Visit the company website and LinkedIn. 

This article is part of Why we invested? series presenting EIT Urban Mobility equity portfolio.


About the author

Catarina Andrez – Impact Officer at EIT Urban Mobility, passionate about impact investments and supporting early-stage start-ups in their path to contribute to a future sustainable urban mobility. Contact at: catarina.andrez@eiturbanmobility.eu

The Future is Now: Applied Courses to Help Urban Mobility Professionals Upskill and Succeed

In this article, you will understand:
– how we have the ability to address urban mobility professionals’ upskill needs
and to guide them every step of the way, from discovering specific mobility challenges to overcoming them with industry experts and peers.
– how the pandemic taught us to tailor our online and on-site learning to fully benefit urban mobility professionals
how we developed an extensive and diverse portfolio of courses and methodologies suitable for a variety of audiences.
how we developed courses on a wide array of other urban mobility-related subjects, with perspectives ranging from social and tech to environmental. View our full catalogue here.


A high percentage of the urban mobility jobs we’ll do in 2030 haven’t been invented yet – does that fact excite and inspire you? Do you want to be a trailblazer, leading the way towards a better future in a career you love? Do you have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge?  We can help.

Now more than ever, we are changing the way our cities and transport are planned: think breakthroughs in new technologies, digitalisation of the industry and championing zero-emission cities. Mobility professionals know the importance of delivering thriving and attractive living environments to citizens of the cities they work in. They also know that their line of work demands learning and implementing new skills and gaining a better understanding of the swift and sometimes abrupt changes this sector faces.

Here at EIT Urban Mobility, we want to be at the forefront of knowledge sharing for urban mobility professionals every step of the way. We are constantly developing state-of-the-art applied training courses that empower sector professionals, decision makers and businesses at every level across Europe to upskill in a way that suits them.

We offer courses perfect for a variety of different people, from local authorities and transport providers to those in the mobility industry, academia and beyond – so if you are looking to upskill, chances are we can help.

As Jim Moran once said, “The future belongs to those who prepare for it” – are you ready to own the future?

From Micro-Mobility and Electric Vehicles to Last Mile Logistics: What Will Become Your Specialisation?

We believe learning should happen in three steps:

  1. Discovering – Your introduction to urban mobility, helping you to uncover the different aspects of this field and discover what you find most interesting
  2. Understanding – Delving deeper into the topics you enjoy the most and developing an in-depth understanding
  3. Overcoming – This final step takes your learning to the next level, bringing you together with experts and other industry peers to overcome specific mobility challenges

We have the ability to guide urban mobility professionals every step of the way, from discovery to implementation. Our Urban Mobility Explained initiative and our online courses facilitate keen students to learn at their own pace, allowing them to properly solidify their knowledge of urban mobility – they are the ideal for the discovery and understanding steps.

The overcoming step is where our applied courses come into play. They are a fantastic way to empower urban mobility professionals to overcome mobility challenges together with industry experts and peers. These courses bring people together, both online and on-site, allowing learners to take the knowledge they’ve gleaned and put it into action.

Our applied courses can take place on location (ideal for experiencing local infrastructure, workshops, networking), online (good for theory or to get together without having to travel) or a mixture of the two. They are the final step in truly and deeply understanding urban mobility while addressing your challenges at work.

The impact of the pandemic

We took away three key lessons from the pandemic:

  1. The understanding part of learning can be done at home, at your own pace
  2. Some of the overcoming step will always need to be done on-site, especially when we are looking at infrastructure and transportation – for example, each specific city will have its own unique features to discover
  3. Parts of on-site courses can also be moved online, but they have to be completely re-thought to achieve the benefits and impact our students deserve – a ‘copy and paste’ approach just won’t work

All this means that we have been able to tailor our online and on-site learning to fully benefit urban mobility professionals like you. No matter where you are in the learning process, we understand exactly what you need – and how to give it to you.

Bridging an Educational Gap with Our Cycling Courses

One great example of how we’ve taken a learning opportunity from discovery to implementation is our cycling courses.

We know that there has been a rapid increase in cycling as of late, as individuals move towards more active mobility post-pandemic. Now is the time for cities to update their infrastructure to make it more inclusive and accessible for all types of travellers.

Cycling is of the utmost importance in urban mobility for a variety of economic, social and environmental reasons, and is changing cities and lives. By collaborating with leading European experts and organisations to develop impact-oriented courses, we are empowering a new generation of ambitious professionals to find the solutions we need to make our mobility greener and our cities more sustainable.

By researching what is important in the world of urban mobility today and discovering and bridging an educational gap, we’ve been able to give learners what they want and need: a proper understanding of cycling in relation to urban mobility.

The lifecycle of our cycling courses

We identified a need for cycling-friendly cities, which was exacerbated during the COVID pandemic. We wanted to empower urban mobility professionals of all levels, as well as spark a change in society, so we developed an extensive and diverse portfolio of courses and methodologies suitable for a variety of audiences.

Our goal? Easy – to make cycling a bigger part of city mobility.

Some of our cycling courses include:

  • An online MOOC on cycling, disseminating the unique cycling experience and expertises of The Netherlands and Denmark; good for beginners
  • A custom blended course for Transport Malta, taking the local infrastructure, mindset and current capabilities into careful consideration to ensure it was as beneficial for this city as possible; ideal for local professionals
  • An open course on designing the cycling city in Rotterdam, based on the content from the original MOOC; excellent for design professionals and mobility students
  • Two courses developed by other providers on the topic of cyclologistics: one in Belgium (next held in April 2023) and one in Italy (2023 date to be confirmed); great for urban mobility professionals
  • A course based on the Danish experience/school of cycling, designed and run by the provider Copenhagenize: held in Copenhagen in English and Paris in French; generally for design and engineering professionals, graduate students and those with a personal or professional interest in bicycles
  • The original MOOC on the cycling city offered to a Slovakian audience with online workshops, held over the summer; good for local professionals

And cycling is just the beginning! We’ve also developed courses on a wide array of other urban mobility-related subjects, with perspectives ranging from social and tech to environmental, such as:

View our full catalogue here.


Take Learning to the Next Level with EIT Urban Mobility

Are you ready to take on the future and carve out the perfect role for yourself in the world of urban mobility? Take the first step today with EIT Urban Mobility.

If you are an individual looking to upskill, why not view our full selection of educational opportunities here? If you are looking for tailored training for your corporation or city, please get in touch with us to discuss how we can create the ideal course for you.

EIT Urban Mobility partners with the Moove Lab to foster the European mobility ecosystem in France

EIT Urban Mobility and the Moove Lab are joining forces to accelerate the development of mobility start-ups. Their goal? Foster innovation in the European urban mobility landscape.

The Moove Lab is the leading mobility start-up incubator in France, founded in 2017 by MOBILIANS, the French aftermarket automotive professional association and Via ID, the new ventures arm of Mobivia. Based at Station F, the world’s biggest start-up campus located in Paris, the Moove Lab has contributed to the growth of 69 start-ups in 9 promotions, including 6 from other European countries (Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, etc.).

The main purpose of this collaboration is to support the development of the mobility start-up ecosystem in France as well as in Europe. It will open up numerous opportunities on a European scale for French mobility start-ups as well as to EIT Urban Mobility’s pan-European portfolio companies who wish to expand to the French market.

EIT Urban Mobility will choose to invest in certain early stage start-ups recommended by the Moove Lab in order to accompany them throughout their product and business development. These young companies will have access to capital of up to 500.000 euros as well as fast-track introductions to the largest pan-European mobility network. The selected French companies will now have the necessary means to deploy their solutions throughout France and Europe.

Since its creation, EIT Urban Mobility has already invested a total of 3 million euros in 32 mobility startups from 16 European countries. Thanks to the intervention and expertise of the Moove Lab, the organisation will now be able to better target the nuggets that have innovative projects with high potential for tomorrow’s mobility.

As a specialist in coaching, training and mentoring start-ups, the Moove Lab will offer its services to young companies from EIT Urban Mobility portfolio. The selected start-ups will benefit from tailored support from a team of experts from the MOBILIANS and Via ID team, offices in Station F and collaboration opportunities with the Moove Lab’s partners in order to rapidly expand on the French market. Thus, the collaboration will allow European start-ups to discover the French innovation network and eventually establish themselves there.

“We are very pleased about this new collaboration with  EIT Urban Mobility. In 5 years, the Moove Lab has become the leading acceleration programme for all start-ups innovating in mobility. This programme is well established in the long term, with a stronger presence at Station F, and this new partnership reinforces its internationalisation. As a professional organisation, MOBILIANS has a major mission to anticipate changes in mobility and accelerate innovation. Thanks to this new partnership, the Moove Lab brings together all the conditions – in terms of business, benchmarking, coaching and training – for the successful development of our start-ups.” Xavier Horent, Managing Director of MOBILIANS.

“We are particularly pleased to announce this ambitious partnership between the Moove Lab and EIT Urban Mobility, which holds promising opportunities for the French start-up ecosystem. It is clearly in line with the European development of the programme already initiated at the beginning of the year with our partnership with Business France Germany, and more generally with the DNA of Via ID, co-founder of the European Startup Prize for Mobility.” David Schwarz, CEO of Via ID

To help mobility start-ups, EIT Urban Mobility has chosen, through the Moove Lab, a partner located in a strategic place: Paris. The City of Light has become a showcase for urban mobility and a launching pad for start-ups in the field. According to the latest 2021 State of European Mobility Tech Start-ups report published by the Mobility Club report by Via ID in partnership with Dealroom, the capital is ranked in the TOP 5 of mobility start-up hubs in Europe in terms of financing. It even ranks first in terms of the number of mobility start-ups.

As a leading global ecosystem, the Moove Lab and Station F offer a unique opportunity for Horizon Europe start-ups to gain access to mobility expertise and the French market. This partnership strengthens our mission for more liveable cities by providing support, hot leads and investments for the best start-ups in our field”, says Fredrik Hånell, Business Creation Director at EIT Urban Mobility.

Finally, the goal of this partnership is also to establish the EIT Urban Mobility brand in the French mobility ecosystem. To this end, three Moove Lab x EIT Urban Mobility events will be organised over the next 18 months (conferences, workshops, networking, etc.). Keep an eye on our events calendar to hear more about them.