MILAN, Italy, Sept. 06, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The second call for proposals of the new edition of ‘Up2Stars' – the programme for the promotion of innovative start-ups in Italy, developed by Intesa Sanpaolo in collaboration with the Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Centre – is dedicated to Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. The energy sector is one of the most involved in the process of technological transformation. There are many entrepreneurial realities that seek to develop innovative solutions aimed at making better use of the energy that comes from nature and improving the efficiency of the tools that harness it. Preserving the environment, reducing energy consumption, and producing and distributing energy from renewable sources in order to protect the planet are increasingly urgent actions that require the use of advanced technologies. In this context, start-ups play a strategic role as key players in the transfer of digital skills to more structured companies, within the framework of the digital and ecological transition outlined in the NRRP.
Now in its second edition, 'Up2Stars' was launched with the aim of identifying the most promising young innovative companies operating in strategic sectors for the country's economy, in order to stimulate and support their growth and prepare them to approach potential investors and more mature companies. After the first call dedicated to the Water Tech sector, which closed with 50 applications, the second call of the programme is aimed at start-ups specialising in: New energy sources – advanced technologies for the production, transport, storage and distribution of energy from renewable sources and new environmentally friendly fuels; Smart solutions for energy efficiency – solutions to minimise energy consumption applied in particular to the Manufacturing Sector, Smart Grids and Energy Communities; and Smart solutions for energy recovery and reuse and for carbon capture. Interested start-ups can submit their applications by October 15, 2023, via the dedicated page: https://www.intesasanpaolo.com/it/business/landing/info/programma-up2starsper-startup-innovative.html.
In line with the previous edition, 4 calls will be launched as part of this year’s edition of 'Up2Stars', dedicated to the following themes: Water Tech, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, Artificial Intelligence for Business Transformation, IoT - Infrastructure and Mobility. A maximum of 10 start-ups will be selected for each of these calls, which will access the customised acceleration path, delivered by the partner Gellify, as well as the networking programme. At the end of the programme, a Demo Day will be held to present the accelerated start-ups to an audience of investors and companies.
What is new in this year's edition is the expansion of partnerships and the network of collaborations which, in addition to Microsoft, Elite and Cisco, includes the National Research Centres in which Intesa Sanpaolo participates as a founding partner of the individual Foundations of reference, as well as the extended partnerships and the 9 European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIH). Also new is the collaboration with Digit'Ed, a company specialising in higher education and digital learning. Another new aspect of the second edition of 'Up2Stars' is the internationalisation perspective for start-ups thanks to Intesa Sanpaolo's internationalisation structure and the collaboration with the Italian Innovation Centre in San Francisco, set up at INNOVIT - Italian Innovation and Culture Hub.
Virginia Borla, Executive Director Business Governance at the Banca dei Territori division of Intesa Sanpaolo, commented: "The energy transition is one of the most important and pressing challenges for our country. With the second 'Up2Stars' call, we intend to identify the best innovative start-ups operating in the renewable energy sector, so that they can accelerate this process. Intesa Sanpaolo also encourages green investments by SMEs through the 'Motore Italia Transizione Energetica' programme, which provides €76 billion for sustainable growth, and, by promoting the development of Renewable Energy Communities, contributes to increasing the competitiveness of small and very small businesses, as well as the economic, environmental and social benefits for the community."
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