Cleantech Scots start-ups pitch to win €10,000 at ClimateLaunchpad

Bio-Alkanol Gel founder and chief executive Jiveri Boniface collects ClimateLaunchpad 2017's grand final prize. Picture: contributed
Bio-Alkanol Gel founder and chief executive Jiveri Boniface collects ClimateLaunchpad 2017's grand final prize. Picture: contributed
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Three Scottish climate-focused start-ups are in the running to win €10,000 when they pitch tomorrow at one of the world’s biggest cleantech competitions.

The trio of top “green ideas” start-ups will battle it out with competitors from 45 countries for the chance to win the five-figure prize at the global grand final of ClimateLaunchpad in Edinburgh.

The victor will also secure a place on the prestigious Climate-KIC Accelerator, Europe’s largest public-private innovation partnership focused on climate change, which is supported by EU body the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

Climate Launchpad, which is being held in Scotland for the first time, provides a stage for companies working to “unlock the world’s cleantech potential that addresses climate change”.

The event takes place on Thursday 1 and Friday 2 November at Edinburgh’s McEwan Hall and is hosted by the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation (ECCI).

Scotland’s entrants will be Planet Heat’s Russell Gibb, an ex-military engineer based on the west coast who is working on a thermal energy collector to source heat from rivers; Jacqueline Bruce of Undisturbed, a Dumbarton-based creator of a luxury hemp shower curtain as an alternative to plastic; and University of Edinburgh PhD student Lorenzo Conti of Crover, which has created a robotic device to measure conditions in bulk grain storage and reduce waste.

Speaking ahead of the event, Bruce said: “Scotland has a fantastic contribution to make to sustainability and the circular economy, and a world-class entrepreneurial ecosystem.

“Being part of ClimateLaunchpad gives us the opportunity to be a part of something that’s much bigger than us.”

Gibb said Scotland “leads the way” with regards to support available for entrepreneurs, while Conti added that “the amount of expertise and training available in Scotland is incredible”.

The two-day event will welcome an audience of some 600 international visitors with a programme featuring more than 130 cleantech start-up pitches, master classes and talks from a range of high-profile speakers.

Ed Craig, ECCI deputy director and national Climate-KIC lead for Scotland, said: “From start-ups to investors and cleantech experts, ClimateLaunchpad brings the global crème de la crème together to unlock great ideas and make a positive climate impact.

“It’s a huge privilege for ECCI to be hosting the world’s biggest green ideas competition here in Edinburgh.

“We can’t wait to roll out the red carpet for the world’s best cleantech start-ups and see Scotland’s top ClimateLaunchpad recruits battle it out for the ultimate prize.”