Startup Europe Awards





In the last few weeks the cases of Coronavirus have skyrocketed globally, seriously affecting countries such as China, Italy and Spain.

In order to find a vaccine or a solution the European Commission has published a grant to support innovative ideas that can help to find a solution to COVID-19.

That is why from Finnova through our project Startup Europe Awards we launched the Health category of open innovation to support all those entrepreneurs who want to present their ideas for COVID-19 prevention. From how to prevent this virus; how to innovate in the cooperation of COVID-19; and how to follow up to avoid relapsing in the disease.

What is Finnova?

Finnova is a European non-profit foundation based in Brussels, which supports the financing of innovation in companies, regions and municipalities. Our areas of expertise include sustainable development, circular economy, water and waste management, employment and youth, ICT and tourism, among others.

What do we do?

We promote innovative initiatives and are a platform for public-private entities.

We help companies and entrepreneurs in the areas of access to EU funding; new business models; networking partnerships; lobbying and political marketing; legal framework; communication and training; mentoring and consulting; and social integration and youth employment and internships.

Where are we located?

We are headquartered in Brussels (Belgium) but we are also present in Spain and have offices in Valencia, Andalusia, Basque Country, Madrid and Alicante. In addition, we also have offices in Romania, Chile, Panama and Mexico.

What is Finnova’s objective?

Finnova aims to promote a culture of innovation through smart strategies and practices in different entities, institutions, organizations and communities across the EU and other geographical areas.

Our commitment to COVID-19

Finnova aims to fund innovation in different social challenges, identify disruptive solutions to minimize, eradicate coronavirus and other viruses. Faced with the global epidemic of Coronavirus, the European Commission, adds efforts, resources and calls for SMEs and startups with technologies or innovations that can help in “treatment, testing, monitoring or other aspects” to combat COVID-19. In this exceptional call, projects may be for less than €500,000. This is an emergency open call for SMEs to submit projects to combat the side effects of the coronavirus. The budget of the call consists of a total of 164 million euros.

Juan Manuel Revuelta, general director of the Finnova Foundation encourages companies to submit their projects “Normally these projects are between 500,000 € and 2.5 million €, exceptionally in this case may be less than 500,000 € and also projects that are of interest, may be financed by other financial channels of the EC and external as additional funding from regional governments, national or private foundations”.

Given the situation, the Commission is accelerating the provision of these EIC grants and blended funding (along with equity investments) to innovations that support this cause. It will also seek to facilitate access to other sources of funding and investment.

Finnova will also mentor the projects in their presentation to the European Commission and already has 4 companies from Spain but wants to continue looking for entrepreneurial ideas that can help fight the virus. From finnova we will guide the startups on European funds such as Horizon 2020; help in the search for funding and private sector companies we will guide them so they know how to enter projects as an SME instrument.

What is Startup Europe Awards?

StartUp Europe Awards (SEUA) is an initiative of the European Commission and the Finnova Foundation, supported by the President of the European Parliament, the President of the Committee of the Regions, the Vice-President of the Economic and Social Committee and Members of the European Parliament. SEUA is sponsored by Finnova Foundation’s StartUp Europe Accelerator.

It presents an award methodology, fostering open innovation and collaboration between the different actors of the European ecosystems, through public-private partnerships to support entrepreneurs. In addition, it creates a network of contacts that allows to inspire and make visible local startups so that through this network they can scale their services and products globally.

1. Mission:

Our mission is to help StartUps and ScaleUps become more efficient, smart and successful and connect these innovative ideas with the needs of society, such as the sustainability challenges faced by cities.

2. How we do it :

We identify a challenge in a city and look for entrepreneurship initiatives that solve it.

By creating an alliance that brings together entrepreneurship award organizers and startups (accelerators, incubators, universities, foundations, investor associations, etc.) across Europe and beyond, being a forum for the exchange of best practices.

3. Result:

Innovative initiatives are promoted and the challenge facing cities is solved.

Where do we stand?

We have a strong international presence. We operate in European Union countries, Mexico, Santiago de Chile and Panama.

What categories do we have?
Smart Cities
Circular Economy

Acceleration ticket for winning startups
For each of the four categories of the StartUp Europe Awards the judges will select a winner.

During the awards ceremony, each of those four winners will receive a Startup Europe acceleration ticket valued at €10,000. These acceleration tickets include the opportunity to join StartUp Europe Accelerator, the first StartUp accelerator specialized in the European Union and its funds that seeks to provide the necessary tools and resources to boost the internationalization of StartUps in order to maximize their opportunities. The following services will be offered to the winners of the acceleration ticket:

Advice on the preparation of proposals for obtaining European funds.
Support in the definition of communication and marketing actions.
Lobbying and lobbying: Legal guidance and guidance on legal aspects – legal barriers to innovation that could affect your project.
IPR helpdesk offering personalized advice on EU intellectual property rights.
In addition, if one of the four startup/scalup involves blockchain, they will be automatically selected to participate in the Blockchain Startup Europe Award global final.
Media Partners:

Finnova collaborates with TVE’s Emprende TVE, the most awarded and recognized business TV program for entrepreneurs in Spain and Latin America, with an average of 20,000 viewers per broadcast. Emprende TVE is the official Media Partner for the broadcasting of the StartUp Europe Awards and StartUp Europe Accelerator business projects.

Success stories thanks to Startup Europe Awards
Waynabox was the winner of the Tourism category of the StartUp Europe Awards 2016. The prize was an acceleration ticket valued at €10,000 sponsored by Amadeus IT Group (

Through this ticket, Waynabox received mentoring from StartUp Europe Accelerator to internationalize its business and submit effective project proposals to European Commission programs obtaining €85,000 from HORIZON 2020, two Seals of Excellence and €2.5 million from the SME Instruments program.