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Enhancing synergies between the EIC and Startup Europe


To support scaling up of companies in Europe, the EIC is seeking to build synergies with the wider European startup ecosystem via a new wave of actions under the Commission’s existing Startup Europe initiative. The actions will act as a catalyst to fulfil the potential of European startups, in delivering market-ready applications and technology solutions that can contribute to the competitiveness and strategic autonomy of EU industry in key technology areas and value chains.

Actions will reinforce the activities of the European Innovation Council by targeting digital and deep tech startups that have received support from EIC to support their scale up in Europe. The actions can support also deep tech startups not yet been supported by the EIC, including startups that have already received private investment or EU funding (e.g. under Horizon Europe or the Digital Europe Programme), and raise their awareness of the opportunities on offer from the EIC. It is foreseen that the targeted startup communities will contribute to development of applications that foster climate-neutrality, digital and circular economy, clean industry and user-centric technology development, while also encouraging inclusiveness, and incorporating European social and ethical values.

Connecting local digital and deep tech startup ecosystems and supporting crossborder acceleration activities for startups. Among the startups ecosystems to be connected, specific attention will be given to including of ecosystems in Widening countries.

Actions should also ensure the integration of startups with the Digital Europe Programme (for example from European Digital Innovation Hubs), the non-EIC parts of Horizon Europe (for example detected using Innovation Radar intelligence) and national programmes targeting startups. Actions should be published on the Startup Europe one-stop-shop and where relevant in the EIC Community, raise broad awareness of support for startups, while knowledge generated by the project(s) should contribute to EIC Business Acceleration Services and the general activities of the EIC Forum. Special attention will be given to support digital and deep tech startups and scaleups, wherever they are situated in Europe, to access innovation procurement opportunities (public or corporate procurers).

For more details, including the expected outcome and impact, see the EIC Work Programme 2021.