Europe’s leading digital innovation organisation today announced its highly ambitious strategic plan 2017-2019; delivering by the end of 2019:
200 innovative products and services to be created in addition to the 100 already created so far
€150 million in VC investments to be secured for scaleups in the Accelerator
3,500 students to be enrolled in our MSc and PhD programmes and 100,000 in our online programmes – up from 1,300 MSc and PhD students and 20,000 MOOC participants so far.
Willem Jonker, CEO of EIT Digital, today announced the details of the organisation’s strategic innovation agenda 2017-2019.This will drive digital innovation and entrepreneurial talent needed to secure/ catalyse Europe’s digital transformation. As set out in its Strategic Innovation Agenda, EIT Digital will focus on the core areas that present opportunities for Europe to lead internationally and address pressing social and economic issues.
The Strategic Innovation Agenda 2017-19 consists of two main pillars of activities: generating significant innovations from top European research results through incubation, acceleration, entrepreneurship, market uptake and rapid growth of these innovations and developing European human capital by sourcing and training entrepreneurial digital talents.
“Europe’s digital transformation could boost GDP by €2.5 trillion over the next decade and EIT Digital is at the forefront of this transformation,” explained Willem Jonker, “The Strategic Innovation Agenda outlines the organisation’s planned investments over 2017-2019 aimed at helping bring digital products from the lab to the market, creating and accelerating digital scaleups, strengthening digital intellectual capital, and growing Europe’s digitally skilled workforce by enrolling students in EIT Digital’s Master, Doctoral and Professional Schools and continuing to innovate across these education programmes.”
Ready for the new Strategic Innovation Agenda with proven track-record
Since the launch of its operations in 2010, EIT Digital innovation and education activities have successfully driven Europe’s Digital transformation creating a total of nine new companies and launching 50 products commercially in 2016. Over 200 startups have been coached by the EIT Digital Accelerator and more than €77 million in capital has been raised for EIT Digital startups. EIT Digital has a network of 130 educational and industrial partners with EIT Digital, 19 of 20 added in 2016 were industrial partners.
In Entrepreneurial Education, 1500 students have studied in one of the eight Master programmes, 160 have enrolled in the Doctoral School in seven countries. Over 20 courses were launched for professional students to enhance their digital competencies, and at the same time, their job market value. Twenty top European universities partner with EIT Digital to provide EIT-labelled programmes. Over 20,000 students have taken EIT Digital’s 25 Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC).
“These figures are impressive and without them Europe’s digital industry would not be as strong as it is today. The years to date were time for EIT Digital to establish operations and infrastructure. I would like to thank all our partners, students and employees for making this happen. Now we have a solid ground for executing our next three years’ Strategic Innovation Agenda and raise our operations into a totally new level as can be seen in our ambitious targets set for 2017-2019”, Mr. Jonker said.
Breaking new ground with disruptive innovation and Entrepreneurship 2017-2019
EIT Digital seeks to generate significant innovations from top European research results by delivering incubation, market uptake and rapid growth of these innovations. It focuses its investments on a limited number of innovation areas that have been selected with respect to European relevance and leadership potential. The areas of focus are:
- Digital Industry: The disruption of the European industrial sector, driving to a seamless process from production to retail and the related supporting functions such as logistics and consumer engagement
- Digital Cities: The digital transformation of cities through centralised, participative and collaborative interactions between city actors like government, city service providers, industry, and citizens
- Digital Wellbeing: Slowing down the growth of healthcare expenses while maintaining quality of life during working years and at advanced age
- Digital Infrastructure: Addressing the core enabler of the digital transformation by providing secure, robust, responsive and intelligent communications and computation facilities.
Each innovation area comprises a portfolio of open innovation activities carried out by EIT Digital partners as well as fast-growing technology startups that are ready to scale commercially. These entrepreneurial projects are grounded in game-changing research , high-profile technologies and disruptive business strategies.
Scaleup Acceleration 2017-2019
Acceleration is a key aspect of EIT Digital’s innovation strategy, and the organisation focuses on scaleups—startups after the product/market fit stage that are ready to scale commercially in Europe and beyond. The main value proposition of the EIT Digital Accelerator is Access-to-Market and Access-to-Finance, which translates into fast-growing average revenues and average funds realised by the supported startups. This positioning is within EIT Digital’s pan-European mission and complementary to national incubators.
An example of a scaleup in the EIT Digital Accelerator portfolio is Distribusion (Germany). The company has developed a global distribution system (GDS) for booking intercity and shuttle bus rides and connects bus operators and travel resellers worldwide. Distribusion raised €6m in March 2016 with the help of EIT Digital and announced collaboration with EIT Digital industrial partner Amadeus in July. EIT Digital has also supported the company with introductions to customers, primarily in Bulgaria, Croatia, France, Italy and the UK.
EIT Digital has set ambitious annual innovation and entrepreneurship targets for the 2017-2019 period. In 2017, new products target is set to go up by 65% (84) and startups created target is set to increase by 44% (13), 60 new scaleups are expected to join the EIT Digitial Accelerator in 2017, with on average, revenues of €3.5 million, 24 employees, and valuations of €16.5 million.
Developing Europe’s human capital through entrepreneurial education 2017–2019
EIT Digital focuses on Human Capital Development and continues to build the brand of EIT-labelled education by training innovation and entrepreneurial talent in its three schools as well as its online programmes.
EIT Digital will ramp up innovation and investment in and impact of its education programmes in the coming years. Three thousand students are expected to have been educated in face-to-face EIT Digital programmes by 2017 rising to 7500 by 2019; the number of students pursuing EIT Digital online courses is expected to reach 100,000 annually by 2019. Additional annual targets for the 2017-2019 period include:
|Master School (new students admitted)||475||600||700|
|Doctoral School (total students enrolled in programme)||180||210||240|
|Professional School (# courses offered)||40||80||120|
|Professional School (# learners)||1000||2000||5000|
|MOOCs (# learners)||20,000||50,000||100,000|
Willem Jonker continued, “We have an extraordinary wealth of talent, expertise and ambition across a range of sectors, which we need to bring together to ensure Europe remains competitive internationally in this growing market.Our digital success is directly relevant to all of us – it will stimulate economic activity, create jobs, grow business and improve quality of life, while developing an expert and entrepreneurial workforce ready for the digital future.”
About EIT Digital
EIT Digital is the leading European open innovation organisation. Our mission is to foster digital technology innovation and entrepreneurial talent for economic growth and quality of life in Europe. We bring together entrepreneurs from a partnership of over 130 top European corporations, SMEs, start-ups, universities and research institutes.
EIT Digital invests in strategic areas to accelerate the market uptake of research-based digital technologies and to bring entrepreneurial talent and leadership to Europe. Our innovation and education activities are organised in and around our co-location centres, where students, researchers, engineers, business developers and entrepreneurs come together to drive the digitalisation of society.
EIT Digital is a Knowledge and Innovation Community of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). Since 2010, EIT Digital is consistently mobilising talents, ideas, technologies, investments and business across Europe and beyond to stimulate disruptive digital innovation. The headquarter is in Brussels with co-location centres in Berlin, Budapest, London, Helsinki, Madrid, Paris, Stockholm, Trento, as well as a hub in Silicon Valley.
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Contact: Maria Diviney
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