greenlab 2020: The winning projects are known!
The 9th edition of the greenlab programme came to a conclusion yesterday evening, following a 100% digital awards ceremony. Despite the health crisis, the accelerator for sustainable start-ups was once again a resounding success this year, with more than 120 applications registered, 69 projects presented before a jury and 15 selected for a 6-month coaching period. Faced with COVID-19, there is only one keyword: resilience. Discover the projects of the three 2020 finalists!
Created in 2012, the greenlab.brussels programme had to adapt to the circumstances related to COVID-19, in order to continue to accompany and support entrepreneurs in the creation of their sustainable start-up. The coaching sessions have become digital and the schedules have been adapted to best serve the candidates. Like so many entrepreneurs faced with the crisis, they too had to adapt in order to play their part.
Virginie Smans, in charge of the greenlab programme at hub.brussels, explains:
Our candidates have shown great resilience, some of them even turning confinement into an opportunity to invest in a new market segment.
3 awards, 3 ways of thinking sustainable
The greenlab.brussels Prize was awarded this year to Beanlife, a project that produces vegetarian tempeh. The project is being offered three months of hosting in the Greenbizz incubator, one year of tailor-made support by hub.brussels as part of the Mybusinesspass (French) program and free participation in a Be Angels investment forum.
For the Triodos Sustainable Impact Award, the choice fell on Natura Mater, a project which offers an alternative to conventional construction techniques by selling environmentally-responsible building materials. This prize of 2,500 euros was awarded by Triodos Bank for the idea and its direct sustainable impact.
Finally, the Public Prize was awarded to JANINE, a local bakery-brewery which offers a feast of simple, high-quality products, 100% circular. The project is offered a stand at Bucolic Brussels on Car Free Day in September. Almost 3,000 people took part in the voting.
A diverse panel of sustainable projects
This year, the greenlab projects stood out both in their outcome and in their diversity. They include food processing (for Beanlife, Brussels Craft Sake, BUNCH, Janine and Freddy Met Curry), permaculture (for Market Gardeners), sustainable cosmetics and wellness (for Bubble Oil, MIKLO Bodycare and Koti Sauna), sustainable construction (for Natura Mater) and second-hand (for Many Lives).
For the second consecutive year, the prototyping module has been adapted to encourage entrepreneurs to test their products/services quickly and confront them with the market.
This year, the programme was also enriched by a workshop on the legal and statutory aspects of setting up a business, in order to boost the rate of start-ups supported by greenlab. A useful addition, in that several candidates were able to create a legal structure for their start-up during the confinement period.
Greenlab in a few key figures
Since 2012, the greenlab programme has supported 93 projects through to the finals.
The business creation rate from the start of the programme until 2019 is 47.5%, i.e. 39 projects launched out of 82. This year, 54% of the visitors to the greenlab were women and the majority were in their thirties.
Would you like to take part in the next edition?
The next edition of the greenlab is scheduled for January 2021; applications will be open from 15 September to 15 November 2020. The programme will celebrate its 10th anniversary and promises several new developments… To be informed, subscribe to our newsletter!