Aigües de Barcelona, CaixaBank, Naturgy, SEAT and Telefónica choose 6 startups to launch new innovation projects

  • The winners of the second wave are Validated ID, Mobbeel, Innovae, Solum, Urban Air Purifier and Climate Trade.
  • The winning startups will perform pilot projects with the companies promoting Start4big, which together have 380 million customers and account for over 2% of GDP.
  • Start4big is the first multisector open digital initiative promoted by 5 major companies in Europe that is seeking mature international startups to perform disruptive pilot trials with a view to improving consumer experience.
Winning startups

Start4big, the first multisector open innovation initiative promoted by Aigües de Barcelona, CaixaBank, Naturgy, SEAT and Telefónica, has chosen the winning startups of its second Wave of Innovation. In total, six of the 192 proposals submitted reached this final phase, which could involve starting different pilot projects with one of the major companies promoting the initiative. The winners are Validated ID, Mobbeel, Innovae, Solum, Urban Air Purifier and Climate Trade.

Start4big’s second Wave of Innovation began with the launch of the partners’ four challenges for developing disruptive solutions to improve consumers’ experience and to ease people’s daily lives in areas such as biometric authentication, X Reality, Smart Cities and the circular economy. A total of 192 projects were submitted, 43% more than in the first wave.

A jury including international experts in different areas of technology and innovation, and representatives from each of the companies involved in Start4big, evaluated the projects submitted (61% of which were international) and chose the six winners.

Winning startups

  • Validated ID is a Barcelona-based technology startup that offers companies secure remote and onsite eSignature and digital identity services. They combine cryptographic security, biometrics and usability.
  • Mobbeel offers biometric identity verification solutions. It uses technology with flexibility for different types of biometric recognition (facial, voice, biometric signature, fingerprint, vital signs detection, etc.) that allows for quick and simple verification of user online identity.
  • Innovae develops virtual and augmented reality-based solutions for improving efficiency in industrial processes. They are designed to provide security and cost savings in critical areas such as processes of maintenance, training and control. It has run projects in different sectors such as the automobile industry, energy, machine tools, food and beverage and water treatment.
  • Solum designs and develops smart charging stations powered with renewable energies for electric micro-mobility vehicles (electric bicycles, motorized scooters, electric motorcycles, etc.). The station’s added value is based on Solum’s solar floor, which produces electrical power from solar radiation (7m2 can charge fifteen e-scooters).
  • UPA (Urban Air Purifier) is a startup that has designed a purifier for improving air quality and reducing contamination both in open and in closed spaces. Urban Air Purifier machines take in and renew air continuously. They detain and capture contaminant particles to guarantee zones that are totally sanitized and free from viruses and even from COVID-19. The purifiers have also been adapted for use as an information point and advertising display using a LED screen, and as a charging point for electric vehicles or a Wi-Fi signal booster.
  • Climate Trade is a blockchain technology platform that streamlines and simplifies carbon offset transactions by establishing contact between generators of emission rights and companies and organizations that need to reduce their carbon footprint. It therefore solves the carbon footprint offsetting needs of corporations and individuals while simply, safely and transparently supporting sustainable projects worldwide.

Pilot projects with major corporations

The winning startups will run projects and test prototypes in real environments at one of Start4big’s major corporations. These will focus on matters such as digital identity, biometric identification, the use of virtual reality in maintenance tasks or technical assistance, the promotion of renewable energies and reducing environmental impact.

The five partner companies of Start4big are present in over 80 countries and together have a total of 200,000 employees. The startups may therefore access a significant customer portfolio of over 380 million people worldwide, distribution channels, positioning and visibility internationally.

Start4big’s first Wave of Innovation led to the performance of a total of five pilot trails among the startups and the companies, the coordination of the industrial supply chain through connection by drones and the development of Smart Home solutions that interact with users.

About Start4big

Start4big is the open, multi-sectorial innovation initiative promoted by Aigües de Barcelona, CaixaBank, Naturgy, SEAT and Telefónica. It provides startups from around the world with the chance to work with these major corporations on developing and testing prototypes in real environments and access the market more quickly. Its goal is to scout for national and international talent to strengthen the Spanish entrepreneurial fabric and offer valuable solutions to its customers and to society. It is the first time in Europe that five major companies belonging to strategic sectors have combined forces to take open innovation to another level: a multi-sectorial collaborative model in which to develop technological solutions that have an impact on all the areas in which these companies work