Wednesday, July 23, 2014

IMPACT is born, an innovative model of start-ups accelerator: €6.4M for 64 start-ups

Milan, 23 July 2014 - A new startups accelerator is born. The European Consortium made up by ISDIb-ventures, the startup accelerator of Buongiorno, Seaya Ventures, Teknologiudviking ApS, and a network of entrepreneurs and well-know professionals of the digital European ecosystem is launching IMPACT which, as of today, is starting (Mobile Internet, Projects Accelerator), its activity as mobile Internet project accelerator with the ambitous aim to finance and accelerate 64 European startups in the coming two years. IMPACT is endowed with €6.4M to invest in start-ups wherein these funds, which amount to an average of €100k per project, will be non-recoverable without equity consideration.

IMPACT is one of the 16 consortiums chosen by the European Commission within the framework of Seventh Program Framework. IMPACT top scored among the 92 projects submitted, of which only 16 accelerators were chosen for the implementation of the FI-PPP initiative (Future Internet Public-Private-Parttnerhip). FI-PPP will provide the selected start-ups with the base technology with the purpose of creating an open environment wherein EU SMEs can take advantage of. The aim of IMPACT is to select and accelerate start-ups associated with mobile Internet which can adopt these European digital technologies (FI-Ware and FI-Content). The accelerator looks for entrepreneurs or start-ups projects that develop mobile apps or business models based on mobility in the communications areas, social, video, media & advertising; design, education, entertainment, e-commerce, peripheral devices, content, connected TV, infrastructure, security, productivity, finance, smart cities and social networks, among others.

Submissions may be sent to IMPACT (from October onwards) by filling out the form on the site
The European Community has guaranteed IMPACT with approximately €8M for the development of the project, 4 of which have already been paid. The 64 startups will receive up to 100,000 each for a total funding of €6.4M in 2 years. Financing will be disbursed in three installments over a period of six months and will be subject to compliance of business milestones specifically set for each start-up.

Mauro Del Rio, founder and creator of Buongiono's startup accelerator b-ventures says:
"We are proud of the launch of IMPACT, is an important project for the development of the European digital ecosystems and is a vital contribution to job creation.
We will support the selected
start-ups in the next two years, through our experience in the mobile internet, to help them achieve their business success."

 IMPACT looks for two kind of companies to accelerate:
  • Companies in the start-up phase: projects with an already available prototype, valued less than one million euro, with at least two founders who work full-time on the project and the expectation of market launch in less than six months.
  • Companies in growth phase: companies already on the market for less than seven years with a turnover of less than two million Euros, where the founders still own 51% of the capital, able to provide indicators that demonstrate the growth potential. The goal is globalization and/or consolidation of the business.  

The selected will begin a premium acceleration process during 6 months consisting of mentoring and training with key digital ecosystem experts and entrepreneurs. The mentoring process foresees, on one hand, follow-up mentors and, in parallel, mentors who are specialists in different strategic areas such as entrepreneurship, technology and financing. The training plan includes:

  • face to face program on entrepreneurial digital acceleration which will cover the development of start-ups, digital marketing, technology and financing, all of that focused on the mobile environment. 
  • e-learning courses about specific digital tools & capabilities necessary for the development of the company.
The last model phase will give access to an extended investment with business angels, venture capital and international global investment funds for the most promising start-ups who prove to be equipped with good development and drive indicators.

IMPACT will physically operate in the B-Ventures Headquarters in Parma and in Digital Acceleration Centers of ISDI in Madrid & Barcelona, although this does not include space for the start-ups. 

In the Extended Funding Phase, the start-ups selected by the Consortium needing globalization can count on the Buongiorno Headquarters in 14 countries, with a contact in Mexico DF through the ISDI agreement with StartupMexico, and connection with Silicon Valley through 500 Start-ups and RocketSpace, participated by Docomo Innovation Inc.

IMPACT also has an agreement to use nursery and accelerators centers in Madrid through Madrid Emprende.

The main movers of Impact are: ISDI (Instituto Superior para el Desarrollo de Internet), is the first business school specialized in the digital fiend in Spain and Mexico, created by renowned directors of the main internet companies and known for having the most complete and distinguished training in digital business (MIB, PADIB, DiBex, InternetAcademi, International Digital Business Seminar at RCC at Harvard, MAD).

Its mission is to develop and promote the digital ecosystem through training and advice from professionals, entrepreneurs and companies to accelerate the shift to a new and more competitive and efficient economic model. 

Buongiorno: Founded in 1998, Buongiorno is known in the worldwide m-commerce ecosystem for developing and managing paid apps and content that help consumers get greater enjoyment from mobile devices. On July 2012, after the settlement of a successful public tender offer, Buongiorno became a wholly-owned subsidiary of NTT DOCOMO, a global leader in mobile telecommunications and technologies and services. With direct connections to more than 130 telecom operators in 25 countries, over 10 years' experience and a team of 600 professionals, Buongiorno makes the mobile Internet experience happen for consumers globally. 

b-ventures is the startup accelerator of Buongiorno, born one year ago, and counts a portfolio of 10 start-ups.

Seaya Ventures. Seaya Ventures is a venture capital firm founded in Madrid in 2013. Seaya invests in early and growth stage Internet and technology-enabled businesses in Spain and Mexico. Seaya Ventures seeks to invest in innovative companies that require growth or expansion capital to become category leaders. Beatriz González and Michael Kleindl are the Founding Partners of Seaya Ventures. 

Teknologiudviking ApS. Danish Consulting firm specialized in identifying public funding for the research and development of advanced technology projects and to facilitate potential partners of the start-ups as well as research centers so that they can undertake its global expansion. Well-experienced in online management and monitoring of open call public processes.