Startups show future on first E.On :agile Demo Day

4. March 2015tupan0

From a Dutch smart thermostat called Anna, via an e-bike to help heart patients and a smartly designed arm to charge electric cars, to platforms for saving at the gas station and community energy systems: all this was packed in an intense pitching session at the first Demo Day of E.On :agile, and StartupDorf attended.

Welcome to :agile
Welcome to :agile

Measured by the diversity and number of interesting startups, this first Demo Day was a big success. The startups offered a wide range of hardware, software and platform solutions, all with an additional aim to reinvent E.On and strengthen its market position. No wonder that a large part of the audience consisted of E.On managers. It’s also part of the :agile approach, in which they aim to identify startups and help them develop their ideas into businesses that can bring innovation and growth to E.On business units. These units are asked to seek out the startups that fit with their business, and invest in them to get them off the ground and scale quickly.
A grand total of 13 startups presented themselves, with different approaches and levels of maturity. Worth mentioning is also that one of these startups actually had ‘failed’. Presenting the story of how customer discovery activities had invalidated the business idea, this was a great example of how one can take lessons from ‘failing’, and then start something new based on what is learned. We need more stories like this to be shared in Germany.
For the :agile team, the first Demo Day was a success. Targeted at an E.On audience, it attracted probably more people than expected: there were more people than seats in the event space. This is a great sign, proving that there’s great potential in using startup methodologies and external founder teams to accelerate innovation in a large corporation. Moreover, within just a few days, including a weekend, about half of the startups presenting at Demo Day, were in talks with E.On departments on developing their idea further, growing the startups and potential E.On business. Chances are, even more of the startups will get the support they are looking for.
The first E.On :agile Demo Day signalled the end of the initial round of this new accelerator program, but it doesn’t end there. The second round is already announced, and is open for applications now. So, dear startups, go to the E.On :agile website, and apply to be part of this exciting adventure. Application for round two closes at 15 April.
To close off, a full list of startups presenting on Demo Day:
Brightup – a new approach to home automation
– Digilohelp – IT service at home (the ‘failed’ startup) – charging points for electric cars
E-bike finder – find the e-bike for you
– Electrocook – efficiency and safety for home cooking in developing countries
– Heart bike – e-bike for heart patients
Micro Turbine Technology – Combined Heat and Power technology with microturbines
Plugwise – smart thermostat called Anna
– Power Hour – inspiring consumers to use energy outside peak times
Solar Inspection Services – optimising small solar installations (at home or small businesses)
– Drivango – tank card for private users, and sales platform for enterprises
SmartKlub – platform to facilitate community energy infrastructure
– E.On off-grid energy solutions – power generation in a container for remote areas in developing countries


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