EU funded projects overview and opportunities 2021-2027

EU Funded Projects – Opportunities for the startups in Malta

Considering of the startup business in Europe it always comes to one’s mind a place to settle down for a long time.

It is also easy to get feedback on your product when you are part of a lively startup ecosystem.

Malta is well connected to major European airports, participating in the growing number of startup conferences around Europe provides founders with new networking options.

The economy of Malta is already based on the strong sectors, such as Gaming, manufacturing, maritime (Malta flag) and financial services, is diversifying now into AI, Big Data, IoT, DLTs sectors.

Malta based business leaders and investors help startup entrepreneurs on early stage organisation by providing finance as well as technical and commercial mentoring.

Malta provide an access to valuable investment opportunities in European startup companies on the Mediterranean island of Malta.

The key supporter of the startups in Malta is Government that provide the tax benefits and other financial assistance such as and investments and grant schemes.

Innovation in new technologies, green ecology and healthy life become the one of the prerogative of the Government supporting.

The Ministry for Environment, Climate Change and Planning (MECP) has highlighted several priority areas as at air pollution, renewable energy and waste.

Startups in Malta that address any of these areas have the opportunity to be supported directly the MECP through piloting of a service/product.

However, the source of the finance is the EU establishments, which provide the Government with funding to support the different sectors of the local economy.

The EU funded projects under the Horizon 2020.

To drive innovation in Europe – develop and test new models of how innovation is approached, managed, financed and delivered – there was set up The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).

The EIT is an integral part of Horizon 2020 – the EU’s key funding programme for research and innovation with a budget of €95.5 billion, under which the EU has already invested 30 billion EUR for the Research in Innovation 2018-2020.

The Strategic Innovation Agenda 2021-2027, in turn, outlines the strategy and priorities of the EIT for the next programming period.

The EU financial supporting provides for the sectors of the economy grouped into the Innovation Communities, which need innovative solutions based on the new technologies, green ecology and healthy life towards the growth engaged in manufacturing, ICT development, pharmaceutical, aviation and maritime service, education and training, logistics and other sectors.

The Innovation Communities offer a wide range of innovation and entrepreneurship activities across Europe:

  • Supporting to start-ups, scale-ups and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs);
  • Financing, technical assistance and network will help highly innovative ventures get over the crisis and strengthen their growth.
  • Innovations and new solutions in the health sector.

The current Innovation Communities are:

  1. EIT Climate-KIC – working to accelerate the transition to a zero-carbon economy
  2. EIT Digital – driving Europe’s digital transformation
  3. EIT Food – Learning a global revolution in food innovation and production
  4. EIT RawMaterias – developing raw materials into a major strength for Europe
  5. EIT InnoEnergy – achieving a sustainable energy future for Europe
  6. EIT Health – giving EU citizens greater opportunities to enjoy a healthy life
  7. EIT Manufacturing – strengthening and increasing the competitiveness of Europe manufacturing industry
  8. EIT Urban Mobility – Smart, green and integrated transport
  9. EIT Alumni – graduates from the Innovation Communities’ entrepreneurial education and business acceleration programmes.

The Innovation Community has 2 000 partners across the Europe and includes 1 284 companies in 193 cities and regions, 310 research centres and 269 higher education institutions.

Each Innovation Community may enter to the EU funded project and use the funds in line with its strategy, including education programmes, research and innovation, business acceleration services.

The EU is financing the Innovation programs for the EIT Urban Mobility and EIT Climate Communities that Malta is the member of which in South region.

Malta – micro – state leader in climate and Climate Innovation Community.

The most of the global problem nowadays is changing of climate to the warm so-called “Global warming”.

Warmer global temperatures lead to climate change affecting rainfall patterns, humidity sea level, temperature patterns and the probability of extreme climatic events.

This climate changing is being caused by two factors. One of them is changing of weather conditions that is the natural factor. Another one is the human-induced (anthropogenic) factor, the most relevant of which is the emission of greenhouse gases through human processes such as burning of fossil fuels that make higher the carbon dioxide level.

Many systems are tied to climate and a change in climate can affect many related aspects of where and how people, plants and animals live, such as food production, availability and use of water, and health risks.

Local changes in temperature, precipitation and soil moisture could negatively impact vital resources for human life, including:

  • natural ecosystems;
  • agriculture and food supplies;
  • human health;
  • forestry;
  • water resources and availability;
  • energy use;
  • transportation.

As a result the eco balance of the nature is being upset, number of the flora and fauna disappear as well as nature resources get extinct.

The still growing humanity is moving to the ecological collapse.

The Maltese Archipelago (Malta, Gozo and Comino) is also battling with the climate change.

Malta’s parliament declared a national climate emergency in October 2019.

One year after in 2020 Malta unveiled a climate action plan – to achieve net-zero emissions in just 30 years and implement green changes to every aspect of life.

Those sectors like transport, energy, buildings and industry at large to align with its green goals.

The national budget is centred on moving Malta towards sustainability and has some innovative ideas that could push Malta to being a micro-state leader in climate.

The European Innovation Community is working to accelerate the transition to a zero-carbon economy and helps Malta to realise its climate action plan of zero-carbon emission.

A decarbonised, sustainable economy is not only necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change, but presents a wealth of opportunities for business and society.

Malta is the regional member of the EIT Urban Mobility Innovation Community.

One of the main sectors of the economy that is suffering from the sustainable growth of the urban agglomeration and also from the global climate change is the transport sector, which is strategically important for the economic competitiveness and social cohesion.

Fighting with traffic congestion, air pollution and traffic accidents is the challenge for the Maltese authorities as well as for governments and transport authorities in all EU Member States.

With the constantly growing urban population there are questions that come to be solved: the economic and environmental costs of congestion, demands for greater accessibility and safety, and the question of how to improve air quality finding the innovative and “green solutions”.

EIT Urban Mobility is an initiative of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) that is working since January 2019 to encourage positive changes in the way people move around cities in order to make them more liveable places.

To become the largest European initiative the EIT Urban Mobility is co-funding with the European Institute of Innovation of up to EUR 400 million (2020-2026) from the EIT that helps to innovate in this sector.

The EIT Urban Mobility is partnering with 15 industries, 16 Universities and Educational establishments, 8 knowledge institutes and 12 Local authorities across the Europe to solve real problems in real cities by transporting people, freight and waste in smarter ways.

The programmes of EIT Urban Mobility provide supporting for the innovative ideas:

  • Accelerator Programmes provide support for innovative mobility solutions by nurturing start-ups. There are two programme per year.
  • SME Hub Programme provides support for innovative mobility solutions by boosting growth of innovative small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The purpose of the Innovation programme is to take innovative ideas, improve on them, and test them out in real life.

The EIT Urban Mobility calls for proposals 2022 – 2024 that is focused on 5 areas:

  • Active Mobility
  • Sustainable Logistics
  • Energy and Mobility
  • Future Mobility
  • Public Realm.

☛   Organization may apply to include the innovative idea in the Business Plan 2022 – 2024 until 18 May 2021: https://www.eiturbanmobility.eu/call-for-proposals-bp-2022-2024-just-launched

☛   Proposals for Innovation: https://www.eiturbanmobility.eu/launch-of-call-for-proposals-for-innovation

Budget allocation is up to 7.7 million EUR.

☛   Proposals for Business Creation: https://www.eiturbanmobility.eu/business-creation-call-for-proposals-2022

Budget allocation is up to 2.1 million EUR.

Regional Innovation Schemes of the EU funded projects.

To apply for the innovations’ grant EIT implemented the regional instruments to manage activities and knowledge flow – the Innovation Hubs.

The EIT Regional Innovation Scheme (EIT RIS) is designed for moderate innovators countries where EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities have few or no partners.

Countries eligible to take part in the EIT RIS under Horizon 2020:

  • EU Member States: Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain.
  • H2020 Associated Countries:Albania, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Faroe Islands, Georgia, Moldova, Montenegro, Republic of North Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine.

The EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub & Climate KIC Hubs Malta has been created in 2020 to connect EIT Urban Mobility Innovation Community with the local mobility ecosystem in Malta to promote the creation of more liveable and solve the mobility challenges.

The EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub & Climate KIC Hubs Malta organises the activities in Malta at European level by EIT Urban Mobility, including local networking and matchmaking events, workshops, training activities, accelerator programs, project opportunities and much more.

The trends of urban mobility in Malta engage the star – ups, local councils, research and innovative organizations and active citizens that share the same interest.

The main partner of the EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub & Climate KIC Hubs Malta is the MCAST, which works in collaboration with the PAF (Project Aegle Foundation) – lead partner of the Valletta Design Cluster, and AquaBioTech Group (a local company is active in Blue Economy field).

The EIT Climate KIC and Urban Mobility RIS Hubs Malta this year will share different opportunities for starups, SMEs and teams with an idea to take their sustainable mobility solution further providing the community with the information session organised on its platform.

Opportunities for the Start – ups and SMEs in Malta driven by the EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub & Climate KIC Hubs Malta.

EIT Urban Mobility offers training, mentoring and financial support through different programmes available to teams and companies based in Malta.

To support the startups’ EU funded projects in Mediterranean area there was established the MED ClimAccelerator – the Consortium between Portugal, Cyprus and Malta.

The EU funding supports for this initiative is up to the 20k per startup.

For those companies, which have a products, services or solutions related to urban mobility the EIT Urban Mobility provides four EU funded projects, which open to support idea holders and start-ups with a business or an idea to promote sustainable mobility in Malta:

1.   EIT Jumpstarter – supporting to further develop and validate your business idea in different sectors, including urban mobility, for participants of the programme Horizon 2020 that Malta is the member of which!

Having the innovative idea you may jumpstart your business!

The strategic aim of this program is to create a sustainable impact in the Central-Eastern and Southern-European Regions by strengthening innovation and entrepreneurship.

If you are a part of scientific project team, innovator, scientist, PhD student or master’s student with a product or service idea to disrupt the existing markets in healthcare, agri-food, raw materials, energy, urban mobility or manufacturing sectors and you want to bring your idea out of the lab to the market then EIT Jumpstarter is ideal for you.

With the help of the 8 months programs you will find and validate the best business model for your innovative idea.

The courses build on the lean start-up methodology from Silicon Valley translated to the European Environment.

You will learn about: how to refine your deal, market segmentation, customer value proposition, market segmentation, financials, investment basics, legal basics

There is an additional possibility to win 10K with the best idea!

Graduated from the program possess you will receive the skills and knowledge to launch your company, and as part of the alumni community to receive further support and advisory from the EIT Communities regarding the next stage of your startup and finally enter to the foreign markets.

☛   Application open until April 30: https://apply.eitjumpstarter.eu

 

2.   The EIT Urban Mobility RIS Hub encourages the startups in Malta to apply for the MED ClimAccelerator program in 2021 and will select one startup to support to apply to the European-wide EIT Urban Mobility Accelerator programme.

The Accelerator programme is focused on cleantech solutions to address climate challenges, including active mobility (walking, cycling, scooting), future mobility innovations, sustainable city logistics (delivery/pick up, waste collection), mobility & energy (electro-mobility, hybrid, hydrogen), public realm (liveable public spaces, community building).

MED ClimAccelerator programme is eligible to apply for the non – incorporated projects and start-ups no older than 5 years since incorporation focused on a new technology or service with high commercial and climate impact potential.

The additional financial and mentoring support for the selected startup is providing by tech.mt

☛   Application open until April 26: https://medclimaccelerator.com/about/apply-now/

 

3.   EIT Urban Mobility ScaleTHENGlobal  is the most promising urban mobility startups with innovative solutions tackling city challenges. It supports startups in scaling-up their business in Europe, driving growth and going international. It also supports startups from outside Europe willing to expand their business in the European ecosystem related to urban mobility.

The selected startups will get promoted at the Business Creation webpage with their profile, and through the EIT Urban Mobility communication channels.

The EIT Urban Mobility ScaleTHENGlobal programme for 2021 includes:

  • The selection of 20 mature urban mobility startups that will constitute the pool of ScaleTHENGlobal participants.
  • €25k worth of support services provided by programme partners.
  • An internal selection process will be offered to the best 3 European start – ups for receiving up to €50,000 for performing a pilot with a partner city.
  • Participants will have access to EIT Urban Mobility networks and cities’ innovation projects.
  • For global outreach, the program organizes trips for ScaleTHENGlobal members looking to expand their activities beyond Europe.
  • Access to external events such as Smart City Expo World Congress (SCEWC2021) and ITS World Congress 2021 in Hamburg.
  • 5 non – european start – ups from the 20 participants will have a dedicated internalization package as part of the event.

☛   Application open until May 5:  https://www.eiturbanmobility.eu/business-creation/scalethenglobal/

 

4.   EIT Urban Mobility Accelerator programme – is an EU funded project in five European regional hubs.

Malta is the member of the Innovation Hub South with the headquarter in Barcelona.

All five regions will start their acceleration programme in July 2021.

The project is implemented through partners to take early-stage startups with business ideas that reduce congestion and increase efficiency in the transport system to the next level.

The selected startups receive 5k EUR grant for each participating startup and 30k EUR worth of supporting services, such as individual business coaching and training, mentoring by industry experts and experiences founders, finding the product – market fit, scaling business, driving growth and targeting the international market.

To participate in the EIT Urban Mobility Accelerator programme the applicant needs to have a clear, scalable business idea and fit with business plan 2021 as at:

—   Shift to active modes of transport.

—   Avoid negative health, safety and environment impacts of urban mobility.

—   Improve urban logistics.

—   Improve public transport.

—   Improve the quality of public space.

—   Improve traffic flow management.

—   Avoid transition barriers.

—   The applicant can be a team with at least 2 people, where minimum 1 team member pursuing the start – up fulltime.

The additional requirements for the startups are:

  • The received revenue accumulated over start – up lifetime should not be less than 1m EUR;
  • No more than max. 5% of your shares are held outside of the eligible countries;
  • Founders and employees should own more than 70% of shares.

☛   Application open until May 9:  https://www.eiturbanmobility.eu/business-creation/accelerator/

Do not worry some opportunities is expired already – we are just in the beginning of the Strategic Innovation Agenda 2021-2027 of the Horizon Europe programme.
We keep you updated on the new opportunities provided by EIT Urban Mobility and other EU funded projects in Malta!
Follow us and you always catch the opportunity for the good start and further promotion of your innovative ideas!

Apply for the startup and SMEs opportunities and set up your business in Malta with Griffiths + Associates:

Anton Magro - Government Grants and Business Funding Expert
Anton Magro - Government Grants and Business Funding Expert

Griffiths + Associates provides a number of services, which help startups, SMEs to establish or expand their business in Malta targeting the respective markets of the new delivered products and services:

  • We navigate you through the legal and banking system in Malta and help to benefit from the tax incentives;
  • We assist you in drafting of the pre-business & post-business plan;
  • We advise you in scaling business and targeting the international market;
  • We assist you in Malta company registration process.

    Our company’s mission – to provide quality financial services to our esteemed local and international clients, keeping their needs at the centre of our ethos; going the extra mile to efficiently and effectively assist them in growing and fulfilling their business and personal needs.

    Peter Griffiths – Managing and Tax Director
    Peter Griffiths
    Managing and Tax Director, Griffiths + Associates
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