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European Innovation Council
Story 10 May 2021

Events - EIC Energy4planet: fast-tracking the energy transition

Jasper Havermans

On 4 and 5 May 2021 the EIC Energy4Planet-iniatitive kicked off. This initiative, part of the EIC Corporate Partnership-programme, gives EIC beneficiaries the possibility to co-create new solutions and deepen their relationship with Europe’s largest corporates. In total 25 corporates and 21 EIC beneficiaries attended the kick-off meeting, respectively in the hopes of finding that new key piece of technology or partnership to scale up. 


The major energy transition challenges of the EU Green Deal and the associated goals will need close collaboration across value chains. It will also require concrete pilots with the best startups, knowledgeable corporates and technology institutes that the European ecosystem has to offer. Last year the EIC successfully launched the Planet.Tech-initiative, where more than a dozen EIC-innovators got together with four large corporates (AB InBev, P&G, Nestle and Deme) to co-create solutions and start pilots and Proof of Concepts (PoC) together. After just a few months seven different pilots and partnerships were initiated and presented during the R&I Days in September 2020 (more info here). With the Energy4Planet-initiative, the EIC Business Acceleration Services once again offers the opportunity to co-create innovative solutions to a number of pre-determined challenges, this time in the field of energy transition.  


Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth: "Innovation is key to reach the objectives of the EU Green Deal. The EIC is playing a crucial role bringing together the most innovative start-ups and most open corporates in the field of sustainable energy to leverage the full potential of innovation in Europe. I am delighted to support the EIC Energy4Planet-initiative and looking forward to next steps in this exciting journey". 


Challenges in energy transition 

EIC-funded startups and scaleups had the opportunity to apply to the following challenges from energy giants EDP, EnelENGIEGalpIberdrola and LafargeHolcim

  • EDP: Energy storage, smart grids, clean energy, client-focused solutions and digital innovation  

  • Enel: production of sustainable materials for applications in the energy sector & innovations for the prediction and management of extreme climatic events 

  • ENGIE: Hydrogen production from seawater  

  • Galp: Unlocking carbon storage potential, V2G/V2H applications, optimization of a digital platform for the agriculture and agroforestry wastes supply-chain 

  • Iberdrola: Energy transition and industrial heat 

  • LafargeHolcim: delivering high performance and low carbon-footprint with the binders of tomorrow & treatments for the beneficiation of industrial and municipal mineral wastes 


The 21 selected startups and scaleups (full list can be found below) pitched their innovations to the six participating corporates, but also to the 19 ‘observing’ corporates, who had the opportunity to book one on one meetings. 


Jim Snabe, EIC Advisory Board member and Chairmen of Siemens and Maersk: “I am very pleased to support the EIC Energy4Planet initiative, which brings together some of the best minds in business to solve some of the world’s biggest energy challenges – such as moving toward carbon-free economies. I’m convinced that by drawing upon each other’s strengths, large firms and start-ups can do a lot to benefit society while at the same time creating economic value. The potential is there. It’s now simply a matter of unleashing it”. 


Next steps 

Last year’s EIC Planet.Tech led to a staggering number of seven pilots conducted in just a few months’ time. The coming weeks the participating corporates are going to select and progress with several of the EIC beneficiaries and translate their propositions in a minimum viable product or proof of concept. Once the selection phase is over, the corporates and startups will co-create their solutions and further develop their partnership. The EIC Energy4Planet-iniatitive will then culminate in a dedicated Demo Day, taking place during the  EU Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) 2021 (24th – 29th October 2021,) where both corporates and EIC beneficiaries will be invited to demonstrate their prototypes and/or partnerships. 


Participating EIC beneficiaries: 


Participating corporates:



Other observer corporates in EIC Energy4Planet: Infineon, NESTE and Shell.

More on EIC Energy4Planet?

During the upcoming months we will have regular updates on the Energy4Planet pilots and PoCs that are in the works. Stay tuned and check the EIC Community, social media channels and newsletter for more!


DISCLAIMER: This information is provided in the interest of knowledge sharing and should not be interpreted as the official view of the European Commission, or any other organisation.

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