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Scotland's climate entrepreneurs aim for global success

A fresh cohort of climate entrepreneurs are launching their bid for global success today as ClimateLaunchpad - the world’s biggest green ideas competition - kicks off in Scotland at ECCI.

The talented batch of green innovators are taking part in a three day online Boot Camp where they’ll learn to develop their idea into a rock-solid business plan. ClimateLaunchpad is adapting to the COVID-19 crisis by switching all elements of the competition online.

The Scottish competitors' world-beating climate change ambitions range from ending the UK housing crisis to eradicating the need for disposable plastic razor blades and “healing broken hearts and broken ecosystems” with an innovative ecoburial service.

After taking part in the online Boot Camp and coaching sessions to fast track their idea into a business, overcome challenges and secure funding, participants will get the chance to pitch their idea in the National Final, hosted online by ECCI later this year.

The top three winners of each national competition will go on to compete in the worldwide Grand Final with prize money of up to €10,000 for the overall winner and over 50 countries taking part.

“We are excited and very honoured to be chosen to participate in the ClimateLaunchpad-Scotland. With its strong network of partners and tailored training, we believe this program can help sow our seeds of ideas into vectors for change.” Karen Rossell Mendez, Applied Negative Emissions Centre CEO
“With the ECCI’s experience in bringing green startups to market, we know the support we need to make an impact is in safe hands.” Hamish Geddes, co-founder of Lenz

Scottish success

In 2018 ECCI hosted the Global Grand Final of ClimateLaunchpad in Edinburgh for the first time, with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon giving the keynote address. ECCI-supported start-up Crover beat off stiff competition from hundreds of competitors to bag third place, becoming the top performing Scottish team in the competition ever.

ECCI’s Head of Innovation and Skills Jamie Brogan said: “The COVID-19 crisis has shown that innovation is more essential than ever so ECCI is delighted to be running ClimateLaunchpad in Scotland again this year and continue our support of budding green businesses.”

“The whole competition has been adapted so that it runs entirely online and it's great to see climate entrepreneurs from four counties across Scotland taking part."

ClimateLaunchpad-Scotland 2020 finalists

Applied Negative Emissions Centre

The Applied Negative Emissions Centre aims to help negative emissions technologies suppliers scale and deploy their technologies faster and more efficiently. The recent Carbon Management MSc graduate team (Karen Rossell Mendez, CEO & Deanna Han, COO) will bring together organisations, institutions, and local governments to realize their mitigation potential and achieve ambitious climate goals. @ANEC_global negativeemissionscentre.co.uk

HalfWild

HalfWild is a new venture dedicated to seeing 50% of Scotland’s land returned to natural woodland by 2050. HalfWild will help create much greater levels of native woodland as a 'carbon sink' through the development of new attractive low carbon business models for landowners. Dunblane-based duo Callum and Hande Blackburn, founders of HalfWild, said: “We are eally looking forward to introducing HalfWild to the ClimateLaunchpad and testing our ideas with the experts!

"We are very excited about the impact and transformation that HalfWild is going to have in Scotland and believe that business solutions that simultaneously address our climate crisis and our biodiversity crisis are essential in the next decade".

Lenz

Creators of a retrofitted sustainable solution for trains that reduces slippage and dangerous braking scenarios in winter months. The ’Traction Hub’ increases efficiency, saves money and reduces environmental impact. Co Founder & Director Hamish Geddes works out of Edinburgh. lenztech.uk

Mved

Mved is designing a fluid hire, lease and share service for ultralight car-like electric and e-assist vehicles. The start-up aims to reduce reliance on cars in urban areas and offer an alternative to electric cars. Founder Brendan Hill is based in Edinburgh. mved.me

NetZero

NetZero is a banking app that tracks and offsets the carbon emissions of your purchases, empowering individuals with the knowledge to make a personal reduction to their carbon footprint. Ashish Telang is the Edinburgh-based founder.

Business Development at Net Zero Bobur Ergashev said: “It’s an absolute honour to be accepted on ClimateLaunchpad and a major steps towards confirming NetZero appeals to the climate change-cautious community worldwide.

"Looking forward, we hope to win the entire competition. We believe we have both the scale and the product (currently in beta-testing) for this. The road won’t be easy but we truly believe we can make the world NetZero together.”

Pallet Blade

Pallet Blade repurpose disused wooden pallets to make disposable razor blade handles, reducing the quantity of pallets going to landfill while cutting the need for disposable plastic products.

Pallet Blade's founder, Edinburgh-based Joseph Taylor, said: “I’m thrilled to make it into ClimateLaunchpad, to get the chance to learn from experts in their fields and to turn an idea into something real is a rare opportunity.

"Like a lot of people, I'm depressed by the amount of non-recyclable plastic I have to throw away on a daily basis, I think consumers deserve a choice in this. I'm hopeful that my start-up can one day make a difference, to help reduce carbon emissions and cut the abundance of disposable plastics."

P-BLOCK

P-BLOCK have developed a new, easy to deploy product that collects tiny particles of metal waste in contaminated water. The zero waste PS-1 is made from waste material and can also be applied to contaminated soil. CEO and Founder Keith Brady is based in East Kilbride.

Quoin

Quoin are on a mission to end the housing crisis by offering first time buyers a new way to make homeownership both affordable and environmentally sustainable. Quoin's Edinburgh based team are: Federico Moro, co-founder and CMO; Richard Murphy, co-founder and CEO; Supraja Balasundaram, co-founder and CTO; Alexander Koveleski, co-founder and CFO; Alexandra Filimon, co-founder and CCO.

Federico Moro, co-founder of Quoin said: “This bootcamp provides a phenomenal opportunity to help us launch Quoin by supporting the business's mission to reduce the environmental impact from home construction and home ownership.”

Return To Nature

Return To Nature is a burial service for environmentally conscious people and families. Instead of a traditional two and a half by eight foot burial plot or high-carbon cremation, we aim to offer each customer up to one acre of degraded Scottish upland that will be naturally regenerated with their patronage. Founder Will Brown is based in Milnathort. @ReturnToNature_ wereturntonature.com

Sunheat photons

Sunheat photons aims to democratize and accelerate access to clean energy technologies, allowing users that don't have the purchasing power to buy solar thermal and solar PV systems access to low carbon hot water and electricity. Sebastian Del Cueto Placeres, Founder is based in Edinburgh.

Could you benefit from ECCI's start-up programmes?

ClimateLaunchpad is delivered by ECCI in partnership with EIT Climate-KIC, alongside ECCI’s three-stage programme for low carbon entrepreneurs and start-ups in the UK - the EIT Climate-KIC Accelerator. Since launching in 2017 ECCI's Accelerator businesses have secured more than £2.5m worth of investments and won more than 70 awards.