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Start Cup Piemonte Valle d’Aosta 2024 has entered Stage 2: applications open for the Business Plan Competition

This year's total prize money exceeds €75,000 in cash and services: apply your innovative business project by July 29th!

After the completion of the first stage of the initiative, the "Ideas Competition", the 2024 edition of the contest for new entrepreneurial projects now enters into full swing with its Stage II, the "Business Plan Competition", promoted by I3P, Innovative Business Incubator of Politecnico di Torino, and 2i3T, Business Incubator of the University of Turin.

Now in its 20th year, the initiative is funded by Regione Piemonte with resources from the European Social Fund Plus. The contest is free of charge and is open to all aspiring entrepreneurs over the age of 18 with the aim of encouraging and supporting the creation of innovative and knowledge-intensive start-ups to promote the economic development of the Piedmont and Valle d'Aosta regions of Italy.

Anyone can participate, either individually or as a team, even without having taken part in the previous stage, by submitting by July 29th, 2024 an innovative business project in one of the five competition categories: Cleantech & Energy, ICT, Industrial, Life Sciences, Tourism and Cultural & Creative Industries.

Organised within the framework of the Italian National Award for Innovation (PNI) promoted by PNICube, Start Cup Piemonte Valle d'Aosta provides a unique opportunity to transform studies and research into business projects, regardless of their stage of development, and to join the network of innovative company incubators. The winners will in fact receive support for the birth of their start-ups, support in defining their strategy, accompaniment on the market through contact with their first customers, and introduction to investors and banks for raising capital.

The awards for the best projects

Following the closing of applications on Tuesday, July 30th and after the intermediate evaluation phases of the applications collected, by the beginning of November the best start-up projects participating in the Business Plan Competition will be decided and then awarded with prizes of economic value, as well as special mentions, awarded with the support of a Jury consisting of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and business angels. 

Thanks to the endowment made available by the promoters and supporters of the 2024 edition, this year the total prize pool rises to more than €75,000 and will be provided in cash, intended to generate financial resources functional to the startup of innovative startups, and services, offered by various partners.

The three overall winners will receive cash prizes: the first place winner will receive a prize of €7,500, the second €5,000 and the third €2,500. The top six projects in the rankings will also be awarded a prize of 1,000 euros each for entry into PNI 2024, the Italian National Innovation Prize, the "champions cup" among the winning business projects of the regional Start Cups that this year will be held on December 5th & 6th, 2024 in Rome, organized by the University of Rome "Tor Vergata" in collaboration with the universities and research institutions of the Start Cup Lazio network, as part of the Lazio Innovation Ecosystem called Rome Technopole funded by PNRR.

As always, there will also be many special prizes up for grabs, offered by several sponsors interested in contributing concretely to the development of innovation:

  • Fondazione CRC, which is attentive to interventions aimed at competitiveness and sustainable development, will award the Fondazione CRC Prize, worth €10,000, to the best entrepreneurial project that sets up business in the Province of Cuneo;

  • the Autonomous Region of Valle d'Aosta, aimed at entrepreneurial development in the Aosta Valley region, will award the Valle d'Aosta Prize of €7,500 to the best entrepreneurial project that establishes the enterprise in the Pépinière d'Entreprises of Aosta or Pont-Saint-Martin;

  • the Piedmont Aerospace Cluster, an association that aims to strengthen the aerospace sector-working with all players in the sector and also through the creation of projects for the dissemination of innovation, will award the Sustainability in Aerospace Prize, worth €7,500, to the best project that considers the theme of sustainability in aeronautics and space;

  • Fondazione Laura & Franco Beltramo ETS, an entity that supports innovative projects in the field of scientific research and technological innovation, will offer two Social Innovation Prizes totaling €15,000 for two best entrepreneurial projects in the fields of medicine, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, agriculture and food needs that promote social progress and the development of better living conditions;

  • LINKS Foundation, a research center interested in fostering technological and economic growth, increasing ecosystem competitiveness and enhancing intellectual property, will award the City of the Future and Sustainability Prize, worth a total of €7,500 in the form of services, to up to two of the best projects proposing innovative products and/or services based on sustainability-related technologies;

  • Jacobacci & Partners, a reference firm in the Italian scene and one of the leading European companies in the field of intellectual property protection, will allocate to the two best entrepreneurial projects with intellectual property features, two prizes with a total value of €7,000, disbursed in the form of services;

  • the UniCredit Start Lab Prize, offered by UniCredit, which is interested in supporting innovative startups in the stages of business life with specific actions, will consist of a mentorship session to assess a project's eligibility for targeted content of the Start Lab program;

  • three 5G & Emerging Tech awards in services for the best 5G-related entrepreneurial projects, offered as part of the City of Turin's CTE NEXT project.

Five special mentions will be also awarded:

  • "Female Entrepreneurship", for the best female business project with a female-dominated team (greater than 50 percent);

  • "Social Innovation". for the best 'Social Innovation' project, which proposes innovative solutions in one of the fields stipulated in Article 2(1) of Legislative Decree 155/2006 on social enterprise;

  • "Open Innovation / Industrial Spin Off", dedicated to the best project concerning innovative products and/or services resulting from a Research activity conducted in collaboration between a company and a university in Piedmont;

  • "Climate Change", for the best business project with an impact on climate change that can integrate innovation, technology, protection and enhancement of natural resources in order to generate economic growth and environmental protection;

  • "Sustainable Technologies", to the best project that stands out particularly for its originality in the field of sustainable technologies, awarded by Jacobacci & Partners.

To stay up-to-date on all the competition news, you can subscribe to the email newsletter via the form available at the bottom of each page of the competition website, or follow Start Cup Piemonte Valle d'Aosta on its official social channels: Facebook, LinkedIn and X.

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