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Pitching in front of real investors – FET2RIN training and EBN Congress

Contributed by: EBN - European Business and Innovation Centre Network

May - June 2018: Final test for FET project representatives - 5 FET projects pitching in front of investors and business angels at the final FET2RIN workshop and EBN Congress
Pitching in front of real investors – FET2RIN training and EBN Congress
In the framework of the FET2RIN project, FET project representatives had the chance to demonstrate the knowledge they acquired during the first two FET2RIN workshops this year (see https://cordis.europa.eu/news/rcn/129184_en.html and https://cordis.europa.eu/news/rcn/129359_en.html), and got to pitch in front of business angels and investors at the final workshop at EBN-European Business and Innovation Centre Network (ebn.eu), culminating with the pitching competition at the EBN Congress in Luxembourg (ebncongress.eu).

After working with mentors on their projects’ value propositions and business models, the five FET project representatives coming from BREAKBEN, CF-Web, ICARUS, Cell Viewer and GreenFlash pitched at the FET2RIN final workshop. The projects had to face some tough questions from investors, pushing them even additionally to revise their projects’ business models.

A month later, the FET projects had an additional chance to polish their pitching skills and get insight into R&D financing trends at the “Access to finance: Tips for successful investments in RDI projects” session (https://ebn.eu/ebn-congress-workshop-on-access-to-finances) at the EBN Congress in Luxembourg (ebncongress.eu).

Five projects participated in the pitching competition, presenting their innovative projects to almost 50 participants, among them investors, business angels, corporates, business support organisations and EU officials:

1. BREAKBEN: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/199029_en.html
2. CF-Web: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/208432_en.html
3. GreenFlash: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/197543_en.html
4. VISORSURF: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/207244_en.html
5. WHITE Rabbit: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/208744_en.html

The projects pitched their ideas to a high-level jury, among them Ignacio Puente González, Policy Officer at European Commission in charge of developing policy actions supporting companies to roll-out their R&I strategy, Larissa Best, President of Luxembourg Business Angel Network, Eileen Moloney, Senior Adviser at EBN Member CorkBIC, and Zhigang Qian, Director of Belt Fa, an investment company.

VISORSURF, a FET-funded project and former FET2RIN training participant, won the pitching competition while BREAKBEN ended up second. Marko Havu, a researcher coming from the BREAKBEN project, found pitching as one of the best parts of FET2RIN training:

“The most fruitful part of FET2RIN training was pitching, but not as much as the pitching itself, but the preparation. You really go 360 around your project and think about all different aspects related to commercialisation. I recommend FET2RIN to all FET projects.”

Helen Kompan, Deputy Head of Unit Startups & Innovation at ‎European Commission closed the session, praising the researchers’ entrepreneurial spirit and mature project results:

"You know what is FET? Future Emerging Technologies, and these FET projects are already mature,” said Helen while closing the session at the EBN Congress.

After the EBN Congress in June, FET2RIN keeps spreading success stories of FET project researchers and the importance of bridging the gap between research and business, this time in collaboration with the FETFX/EFFECT project (https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/207076_en.html). Join us at the “Business and entrepreneurship in disruptive science” session at “EuroScience Open Forum” (ESOF) taking place 9-14th July 2018 in Toulouse, France. http://www.fetfx.eu/event/effect-esof-2018/

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    EBN - European Business and Innovation Centre Network
    Belgium
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Keywords

FET, mentors, pitching, researchers, ebncongress, commercialisation
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