The EU Horizon 2020 programme has a broad remit to help support European startups and scale-ups.
Now, their mission takes flight with SpaceUp, a comprehensive event series to assist the next generation of European companies in the space sector. To do this, SpaceUp is planning six Space Academies around Europe to connect European space tech startups with the latest commercial and technical expertise, as well as to build their networks with mentoring and support from business angels, investors, corporates and the European Space Agency (ESA).
The two-day events will "gather all relevant stakeholders" in the European space tech industry in different "Space Intensive" locations in Europe. The academies will focus on networking and skills development and include expert panels, workshops, coaching and keynote sessions. On the final day of the events, selected startups will have the opportunity to pitch their projects to receive "high-level feedback" from the audience.
Ten startups will be chosen for each iteration of Space Academy. However, all interested European companies will have the opportunity to attend SpaceUp's public events. The ten selected startups will have their attendance expenses paid, receive access to exclusive networking opportunities and services.
The SpaceUp project was formally launched in June 2018. A collection of business, research and regional organizations from five European countries have received EU funding to support the SpaceUp program, including SME4Space, the International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation, the European Business Angels Network, Aivaspace Bremen and Lazio Innova.
The European Union's Horizon 2020 programme has allocated €1.997.982,50 (let's call it €2 million) for the SpaceUp programme. Importantly, this new program is not to be confused with SpaceUp, a long-standing space industry community initiative that has been active in Europe since 2012.
Applications are invited for the first Space Academy to be held in Helsinki, Finland from June 3-4, 2019, to be held in collaboration with the European Business Angels Network's Annual Congress. The next Space Academy will be held in Bremen, Germany this fall.
Submissions for participation will close on March 1, 2019.