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EIT Food TeamUp winners announced

Meet four innovative agrifood startups that won prizes in the first edition of the Startup Team Builder programme of EIT Food.

04 Nov 2021
EIT Food North-East

TeamUp is a programme in which technologists are matched with business professionals to create impactful agrifood companies.

On October 28-29, the EIT Food TeamUp programme concluded with the Pitching Days in which 14 teams competed for the prizes of €40,000, €25,000, €15,000, and €10,000.

The competition was judged by a panel comprised of top agrifood experts and investors: Carla Ibañez Robles (Investment Analyst, EIT Food), Gerd Buta (Innovation Advisor, UN World Food Programme Innovation Accelerator), and Thomas van den Boezem (Senior Associate, PeakBridge VC).

The jury had the difficult task of choosing four winners among 14 excellent teams. In the end, the jury awarded the prizes to startups with the most impactful agrifood solutions and the most promising teams.  

1st Prize – €40,000

KOA Biotech, Spain

Led by Sira Mogas Diez and Hugo Marques Dias, KOA Biotech’s aim is to reduce production losses in fish farms by offering real-time monitoring services to track infectious pathogens. KOA offers a whole innovative service to enable the proper management of disease occurrences in aquaculture. They fuse living technologies with microelectronics to have a better track and prevention of pathogen infections in fish tanks.

2nd Prize – €25,000

Ekofertile, Slovakia

Ekofertile develops a biofertilizer enriched with bacteria, nutrients and organic acids, produced from bioleaching diverse natural resources such as mineral waste. The startup led by Darina Štyriaková and Juan Noriega supports plants health and growth without pesticides while helping farmers achieve double yield.

3rd Prize – €15,000

FreeShakes, Spain

FreeShakes is the future generation of fructose free products. The aim of the team led by Antonio Fenoll, Álvaro Valdes, and Monta Ronzenburga is to improve the quality of life of fructose intolerant people by creating the most delicious fruit products without fructose.

4th Prize – €10,000

FresCon, Greece

Danial Fatchurrahman and Marios Efthymiou are developing a post-harvest solution extending the shelf life of fresh fish by 3-4 times compared to conventional methods. Apart from extending the shelf life of fresh fish, the technology also helps preserve its sensory quality (taste, firmness, colour and odour) as well as its nutritional quality.

In case of any questions or interest in the winning teams, please feel free to contact TeamUp Programme leads Yulia Bodnar (RIS Startup Support Manager, yulia.bodnar@eitfood.eu) and Juan Ignacio Zaffora (Regional Startup Manager, juan.zaffora@eitfood.eu).

About TeamUp

TeamUp is a 7-month programme that finds and matches up brilliant innovators with compatible and complementary profiles. TeamUp provides important tools and support to build an agrifood startup including expert guidance, world-class training, mentorship, networking and funding. The programme is designed for two types of innovators from Southern and Eastern Europe: technologists with innovative agrifood solutions and entrepreneurial business professionals who want to build an agrifood startup. 

Selected from over 280 applications, 63 innovators from 15 countries were invited to the Matchmaking phase of the 2021 TeamUp edition. During the Matchmaking month, participants were networking, getting to know each other, testing relationship through business scenarios, pitching and learning more about their own values and ambition. 

After the Matchmaking phase, 15 matches were made between tech innovators with agrifood solutions and business professionals. The 15 newly created teams continued into the Exploration phase during which they explored and tested their match. The teams were supported with business and team formation training, a monthly stipend, as well as business and team building coaching from 20 world-class experts. 

At the end of the programme, 14 teams presented their solutions and TeamUp journey during the Pitching Days.

The next edition of TeamUp will be launched in early 2022. More information about TeamUp can be found on the programme webpage.

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