As of today IMPACT activity is starting (Mobile Internet, Projects Accelerator), a mobile Internet project accelerator created byISDI, Buongiorno (b-ventures), Seaya Ventures and Teknologiudviking ApS, one of the 16 consortiums chosen by the European Commission within the framework of Seventh Program Framework.
IMPACT was on the top scorers of the 92 projects submitted, of which only 16 accelerators were chosen for the implementation of its FI-PPP initiative (Future Internet Public-Private-Parttnerhip). FI-PPP will provide the start-ups with core 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 y 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, ecommerce, peripheral devices, content, connected TV, infrastructure, security, productivity, finance, smart cities and social networks, among others.
IMPACT looks for two profiles of project to accelerate:
- Start-up Phase: Projects with a working prototype available, valued at less than a million Euros and at least two founders working full time for the startup. Target market launch date is less than six months.
- Growth Phase: Companies already present in the market for less than seven years with turnover below two million Euros, where the founders still own 51% of Shareholders’ Equity, and provide indicators proving an exponential growth potential. The objective is its globalization or the consolidation of a change of business focus.
With this in mind, IMPACT has designed a disruptive acceleration model consisting of 4 steps:
- Calling and selection of European start-ups focused on mobile Internet. The process of selection is based on candidate applications on an online platform, screened by a committee of independent experts, who will summon the entrepreneurs to an elevator pitch and personal interviews to pick the projects who gain access to the acceleration process.
- IMPACT will subsidize at least 64 Start-ups up to 100.000 euros financing for each one without equity consideration, investing a total of 6.4 million euros in 2 years. Financing will be disbursed in 3 installments throughout 6 months subject to the compliance of business milestones set specifically to each start-up.
- The selected companies will start a premium acceleration process during 6 months consisting of mentoring and training with key digital ecosystem experts and entrepreneurs. Mentoring process employ, on one hand, follow-up mentors and, in parallel, mentors who are specialists in different strategic areas such as entrepreneurship, technology, marketing and financing. The training plan includes:
- a 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 companies.
- 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.
Nacho de Pinedo, CEO of ISDI, explains that “IMPACT has been created with the purpose of contributing to the development of the European entrepreneurial ecosystem, with special emphasis on countries like our that specifically need to promote digital entrepreneurship. We have therefore designed an ambitious model of acceleration which will allow start-ups to take full advantage of the business opportunities existing in the mobile field leading them to achieve global scale and dimension.”
Fernando González-Mesones, CEO of Buongiorno, comments: "We are delighted with the launch of IMPACT, its emphasis on the development of European digital ecosystems and contribution to employment generation. We will support 64 startups chosen in the next two years, through our experience in mobile internet, to achieve their business goals. "
Michael Kleindl, founder & director partner at Seaya Ventures: “To Seaya Ventures is an ideal opportunity to be close to the next digital stars in the mobile environment both in Spain and abroad. We can support, from initial stages, promising projects and accompany the best throughout his business life. "
Differences of IMPACT with respect to other acceleration models
The IMPACT model offers significant differences with respect to other acceleration programs in various aspects:
- Financing Model: The subsidy of up to 100,000 Euros is non-recoverable; the start-ups are not obliged to exchange equity shares. Moreover, financing will be disbursed in three installments depending on the attainment of the business milestones.
- Profile of the start-ups: IMPACT is focused on mobile internet projects, with European scope, both in the start-up as well as in growth phase.
- Multi-level process of selection: With an online platform, a panel of independent experts, and different assessment methods of the project.
- Process of integral acceleration: including a training and mentoring programlead by a global network of mentors and trainers paid by the accelerator.
- Network of venues and premises: premises from ISDI in Madrid, Barcelona and from b-ventures in Milan and accesses in 14 countries starting with the second investment phase.