For the second consecutive year, Raiffeisen Bank in Romania supports Black Sea ClimAccelerator, the regional accelerator for green startups. The accelerator is in its second edition and is dedicated to the green startups eager to innovate for a more sustainable future. Being part of the largest green accelerator in Europe, ClimAccelerator, the regional edition offers total funding of EUR 300,000, mentoring programs, specialized consulting, and training to attract investment. Thus, the local startups are invited to apply between May 24 and July 24 with their eco-innovation solution on the blackseaclimaccelerator.eu website.
Black Sea ClimAccelerator intervenes in the process of climate change by developing the Cleantech field, identifying startups that through innovation and technology can implement viable and scalable solutions. It is organized with the support of EIT Climate-KIC of Impact Hub Bucharest and the main partners Raiffeisen Bank and OMV Petrom, The Climate Vertical and the main partner Volta, and Innovation Accelerator in Bulgaria.
The types of solutions eligible in the Black Sea ClimAccelerator can address topics such as: streamlining waste management, smart agriculture (AI) solutions, those that support the circular economy through technology, solutions to reduce carbon emissions from various industries, those that use green energy or green technologies for a cleaner environment, those that propose the development of sustainable materials as well as any startup that contributes to reducing emissions or capturing greenhouse gases.
Depending on the stage of development of the registered businesses, they will be included in one of the three categories:
- The Early Stage.
- The MVP.
- The Growth.
The registration process is open between May 24 and July 24, for the first category (The Early Stage) which is addressed to startups at the beginning of the road and to teams that want to make a startup materialize an idea.
“The impact of the current economic model on the environment is an important and constant concern. It has become clear that we must think of growth strategies only in harmony with the environment if we want to ensure the sustainability of our business, society, and the future. In this context, we have only one option left: to accelerate towards a sustainable economy! That is why Raiffeisen Bank has a program dedicated to business at the beginning of the road https://www.raiffeisenfactory.ro/ and collaborates with Impact Hub, at this Green Business Accelerator. Any such initiative counts and can make a difference in the quality of life of each of us,” – said Raluca Nicolescu, SME Director at Raiffeisen Bank.
“The first edition of Black Sea ClimAccelerator showed us that there is a huge potential in the green startup market that is at the beginning of the road. We have realized that the subject is not only debated publicly but also in the private space, we are looking for eco-innovation solutions that need tools and resources to take their mission to the next level. Thus, in 2022 we are looking for a new generation of entrepreneurs who can respond to the major challenge of the century: climate change. Thus, we encourage green entrepreneurship through innovation, creativity, and technology together with an ecosystem of partners, mentors, jurors, and investors,” – said Adina Cretu, Director of Programs & Entrepreneurial Growth Impact Hub Bucharest.
Any startup that addresses the most debated topic on the public agenda through innovative solutions – climate change – can apply in the Black Sea ClimAccelerator, where it has the opportunity to verify its idea and attract investment. The most promising startups in Romania and Bulgaria will enter a complex program that includes, among others: the business modeling workshops, the marketing, the sales, the financial management, the business consulting and the investment preparation, the individual mentoring, the pitching sessions, the peer sharing, the international events, and, the last but not the least, the financing to grow customers` businesses.
What are the three categories?
The Early Stage: The startups that have an idea and are in their infancy. The sixteen such startups in Romania will receive a grant worth EUR 5,000 and support invalidating the business idea.
The MVP: The startups that have a validated prototype with customers. For this category, there are six places available in the program and they will be able to receive a grant of EUR 20,000, support in attracting customers, and specialized consulting according to their specific needs.
The Growth: The startups that already have scalable solutions. The six such startups in Romania will benefit from specialized consulting sessions on their specific needs, including the understanding of investment terms sheets, the activities to identify grant opportunities both locally and internationally, and facilitation and support activities to prepare them for attracting investments and financing.
All selected startups will also participate in the individual mentoring sessions, and the peer sharing sessions nationally and internationally and will connect with key players in the ecosystem. In addition, the startups in the MVP and the Growth categories will participate in national and international events and fairs and Demo Day, a national event in which they will present their solution to key market players and participate in networking sessions.
The selection process for participating in the accelerator will be performed by a jury composed of members with diverse expertise from both the entrepreneurial environment and the corporate and investment environment. In this edition, the accelerator jury includes Adina Cretu – Director of Programs & Entrepreneurial Growth Impact Hub Bucharest, Andrei Dudoiu – Managing Partner & Chairman of the Board of Directors SeedBlink, Catalin Velescu – General Manager and Founder of Volta Grup, Hanny Bratu – Marketing & Fundraising Manager WWF Romania, Ionut-Cristian Ciubotaru – Vice President Business Development Gas & Power Division OMV Petrom, Loredana Ianus – Communication Director Graffiti PR, Raluca Nicolescu – SME Director Raiffeisen Bank, Vlad Gliga – CEO Rubik Hub & Co-founder The Climate Vertical.
Source: the Bank`s press release dated May 24, 2022