Why founders should start-up in Austria and what they actually work on.

Meet our Austrian Accelerator Manager Martin Schott.

Martin, you are the new Accelerator Manager in Austria, what is your background?

Born somewhere in the middle of Austria, in Bad Ischl, I went for my studies to Vienna. After finishing in 2014 my Master in Biotechnology, I worked as Technology Transfer Manager at my university and as Program Manager at WUs Entrepreneurship Center. Since November 2018, I am part of the DACH Accelerator team of Climate-KIC.

Martin Schott

Martin Schott, Climate-KIC Accelerator Manager in Austria.

As a technology fan, why do you work for Climate-KIC?

I love to work with passionate people, who are talking about opportunities, ideas and new solutions for the main challenges of our society. The combination of this attitude with the topic “climate change” is a perfect match to me. That is Climate-KIC!

Why is Austria, and especially Vienna, a good place for Startups?

The Austrian startup ecosystem developed in a massive way in the last five years. New startups and founders find a great network of supporting organizations and funding institutions. And on top of that, Austria is a great place to live. Vienna for example is one of the most livable cities in the world. Being present in Austria, our Climate-KIC Accelerator can support the local startup scene by providing early-stage support and coaching for cleantech teams.

Thanks Martin! Can you give us an example of a team you work with?

Sure, HYDROGRID is one of the teams that is currently participating in the Austrian Accelerator Programme. Please meet the founder and CEO Janice Goodenough.

Janice Goodenough

Janice Goodenough, CEO of HYDROGRID.

Hi Janice, what is your startup about?

HYDROGRID provides a fully automated IoT solution for the optimal daily operation of hydro power plants. Hydro power owners who want to fully digitalize their daily processes use the ‘INSIGHT’ software suite to cover everything from inflow forecasting to power market access integration and an automatic interface to the local plant control system. This not only increases revenues and streamlines their business along the entire value chain ‘from water to money’, but also unlocks the full flexibility potential of the plants to the grid — making small and medium hydro accessible as ‘green battery’ for Europe.

How did you come up with the idea?

Our team combines almost 50 years of experience in the energy industry — most of it in the large hydro sector — with scientific expertise and a background in the area of operations research. We found that the existing solutions tailored to large hydro of course provide a high planning quality but are too expensive and labor-intensive in daily use for small and medium size renewable operators, so we saw a big market opportunity there. We were able to develop a solution that is highly efficient (both numerically and operationally) and allows us to bring hydro power plants of all sizes to the digital age.

Sounds good, what is your business model?

We offer a pay-as-you-go model with minimal setup costs for our solution. Our fees are performance-based depending on the revenue increase that is generated through the automated, real-time intelligent dispatch (24/7) that our solution provides.

Why did you apply for Climate-KIC?

Our key goals for 2019 is to roll out our product in additional market areas and to negotiate cooperation agreements with key energy industry players. The network that Climate-KIC provides will be invaluable in helping us achieve those goals, so we are very excited to join the community!

Thanks Janice, best of impact for 2019!

Climate-KIC Accelerator teams in 2018.

 

 

 

 

Every early-stage cleantech team interested can apply until 27th January for the upcoming Summer Batch 2019.

Author: Lara Obst

 
Location
Osterreich
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