After three years, the FED4SAE* programme has concluded. Since its launch, the programme has directly supported 32 companies from across Europe to create an array of prototypes and innovative products which increased the competitiveness of European innovators in the CPS and embedded system markets, as well as working to expand Digital Innovation Hubs across the continent.
FED4SAE has helped to create a competitive ecosystem where European startups and scaleups can thrive with access to leading technology sources, competencies and industrial platforms, as well as well-connected business infrastructure and existing regional innovation hubs.To celebrate the results from the programme, the FED4SAE website has been updated as a showcase of the work done so far and the many successes that the startups have achieved.
The open calls for this programme, through brokerage events, booths, FED4SAE information workshops, webinars and website communication, raised awareness of the FED4SAE initiative with over 3,000 companies, with proposals sent from 34 countries across Europe; 97% of all the submitted proposals included partners at least from two different countries. The broad range of industrial platforms, advanced technologies and testbeds offered by FED4SAE also translated into a wide range of targeted technical fields and application domains in both the received proposals and those that were granted: from computer vision, machine learning, virtual reality and artificial intelligence to smart sensors, and audio processing. In total over 30 different technology uses could be identified, with usually more than one field being featured in a proposal.
The companies that were selected had access to:
- Up to €58k funding
- End-to-end services
- Leading edge industrial platforms
- Research institutes advanced technology and testbeds
- Support through technical expertise and coaching
- Business and market analysis and guidance from concept through market release.
The management of innovation within the programme formed a coaching process that was implemented in three steps:
- The strategic elements are discussed in the early stages of the project
- The future execution of the product launch is then looked into
- The financial issues dealing with the ROI and access to funding.
These elements were investigated during a series of meetings with each company, tailored to that company’s perspectives and needs.
The success stories from the programme are numerous including:
- Safecility – the development of an IoT solution for testing emergency lighting, it has already gained four customers that adopted the company’s product and it has begun to structure its sales. Additionally, in October 2020, Safecility was shortlisted by LUX for the Lux Awards 2020 Emergency Lighting Product of the Year
- CheckBnB and EnergyCcM – Eco Smart Homeproject, initially aiming at reducing energy wastage in holiday homes, though the team was able to successfully pivot after COVID-19 impacted its business
- BETTAIR – met the needs of environmentally-aware cities in Europe, becoming one of the major players in its field through support from FED4SAE
- Surewash – developed hand hygiene solutions to reduce infections in hospitals, food preparation, sports or education, a topic that became even more pertinent after the outbreak of COVID-19
- ASINCO – produces radar-based measurement technology that is now being sold to customers with expected sales of up to €5 million in the next two years
- Energica Motor Company – worked with FED4SAE to support the development of a smart battery monitoring system for electrical motorcycles to insure safe battery changing operation and better managing battery cycles during MotoE competition races for which Energica has been chosen as the single manufacturer of the series
FED4SAE relied on its consortium of 14 partners spread across 10 different countries, to provide a unique marketplace providing access to technologies, technical expertise, business and financial services. With these partners’ help, this programme has helped provide new opportunities for European startups. Even though FED4SAE has come to an end, there are still ample opportunities for European startups to continue to improve and develop. In particular, DigiFED, that aims to support companies in their digitization routes and enhance the DIH offer and increase DIH collaboration across the continent, and Smart Anything Everywhere, which offers startups access to funding and expertise through other DIHs, are able to provide more of the support and value that FED4SAE has previously.
Despite the impact of COVID-19, FED4SAE has continued to help startups across the continent, by using funding and virtual assistance. The startups that took part were able to adapt and largely able to work during the pandemic. For example the Eco Smart Home project was able to pivot its plan to take into account COVID-19 and still complete the project. It is the spirit of cooperation and perseverance that will continue through the programmes that succeed it; the same spirit that will help the European startup infrastructure thrive in the face of the pandemic and its effects.
For more information on FED4SAE, to check the results of the programme, success stories and other funding opportunities, please visit the FED4SAE website.
* Federated CPS Digital Innovation Hubs for the Smart Anything Everywhere Initiative