The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) has announced this year’s winners of the prestigious EIT Awards. Michael Dittel, LeafTech (Germany), Marc Julien, Diabeloop (France), Matthew Dickson, CorPower Ocean (Sweden/United Kingdom), Sara Guimarães Gonçalves, Trigger.Systems (Portugal), and David Pistoni Perez, Zeleros (Spain), were awarded for innovations in the fields of climate, energy and health.
Celebrating outstanding innovations, the EIT Awards winners were chosen by an international jury and featured 19 nominees from across Europe, competing in categories recognizing excellence in innovation in the fields of climate, energy, digitization, food, health, and raw materials.
More than 400 leading entrepreneurs, cutting-edge innovators and policymakers gathered at the EIT Awards ceremony in Budapest. The awards were presented by Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, László Palkovics, Hungarian Minister for Innovation and Technology, Sanja Damjanović, Montenegrin Minister of Science, Laima Kaušpadiene, Member of the EIT Governing Board and Prof. Werner Weidenfeld, Rector of the Alma Mater Europaea.
Tibor Navracsics, noted that this year's EIT Award winners and the nominees are "an inspiration to innovators across Europe, and proof that the EIT - Europe’s largest innovation network - increasingly succeeds in supporting ambitious entrepreneurs, job creation and solutions to the challenges facing our societies. I look forward to seeing this innovation community continue to go from strength to strength in the coming years."
Dirk Jan van den Berg, Chair of the EIT Governing Board also congratulated the winners for their ground-breaking innovations. "Impressively, ventures supported by the EIT Community have already raised EUR 1.5 billion in external investment. Powering entrepreneurs to turn their best ideas into solutions for a greener, healthier and more sustainable planet is at the heart of the EIT, Europe’s most experienced innovation engine,” he pointed out.
THE 2019 EIT AWARDS WINNERS
The EIT Awards celebrate the best of Europe’s talented entrepreneurs who power solutions to pressing challenges facing Europe in climate, energy, digitization, food, health, and raw materials. The Awards encourage entrepreneurs and promote innovation made in Europe.
Michael Dittel, LeafTech (Germany) - supported by EIT Climate-KIC - won the EIT CHANGE Award. The prize recognizes top graduates from EIT education programs and the winner is awarded EUR 20 000. ‘As a creative person with a passion for engineering and innovation, I never knew where to put my ideas and energy. The EIT Climate-KIC Master label degree showed me the right path,” Michael Dittel said.
Marc Julien, Diabeloop (France) - supported by EIT Health - won the EIT Innovators Award. The award recognizes teams with high impact products and services and comes with a EUR 50,000 prize. According to Marc Julien, “partners are essential as nobody has the skills to face all the challenges of building innovative products and entering the market on their own. The EIT Community has helped us foster cross-border cooperation in a major way.”
Matthew Dickson, CorPower Ocean (Sweden) - supported by EIT InnoEnergy - won the EIT Venture Award. This award recognizes successful entrepreneurial start-ups and scale-ups and the winner is awarded EUR 50,000. Matthew Dickson said that “EIT InnoEnergy were the ones who first believed in our product and were ready to actually put money into it, thus attracting other investors.”
Sara Guimarães Gonçalves, Trigger.Systems (Portugal) - supported by EIT InnoEnergy - won the EIT Woman Award. This award recognizes outstanding women innovators with EUR 20,000. “There is a lot of gender bias in our sector but EIT InnoEnergy provided me with the necessary empowerment tools to make it,” according to Sara Guimarães Gonçalves.
David Pistoni Perez, Zeleros (Spain) - supported by EIT Climate-KIC - won the EIT Public Award. This award recognizes the public’s choice for top innovation with thousands of votes cast across Europe. ‘The EIT is the perfect bridge to scale our disruptive innovation project at a European level,” David Pistoni Perez said.