The Guardian describes them as the Archimedes of this Millennium: startups, makers, innovative businesses sometimes with a very limited staff. But with the right intuition, that can revolutionise small and large market segments by proposing services that cause Big Companies, individual consumers or entire communities to cry out "Eureka!".
"Companies are now looking outside for solutions that can grant them a competitive advantage on the market", explained Enel's Head of New Ventures Initiatives Luciano Tomasi in the article "Green shoots: the irresistible rise of the clean tech startups" that was published on
The Guardian online within its editorial partnership with Enel.
Open innovation is the path to be followed by Enel to achieve an eco system where different players, internal and external to the Group, work together to identify and develop the ideas that best respond to the new energy model, characterised by renewable sources, distributed generation and smart technologies, and to customers' needs regarding the sustainable use of energy by reducing consumption, costs and environmental impact, which have become increasingly specific.
Working with startups is a consolidated experience for Enel, which has embedded it into its business model. As shown by the 2.0 companies that over the last years have developed cutting-edge ideas with the Group in the field of smart lighting – like the Smart-I startup – or of renewable predicting analyses using Big Data – a project carried out with i-EM (Intelligence in Energy Management).
Programmes involving startups have become a common practice for Enel. September 30 was the deadline for the second call of INCENSe (INternet Cleantech ENablers Spark), a programme targeting green tech startups coordinated by Enel and Endesa in a partnership with two incubators, the Danish Accelerance and the Spanish Funding Box, and supported by the European Union that granted €8 million to fund the most interesting projects to be proposed by young businesses. On the other hand, October 31 will be the deadline for Enel Green Power's public contest that is granting a €10,000 prize to startups and companies that will propose solutions to operational challenges by using drones at renewable plants or automated assembling systems at solar PV fields.