Finnova Foundation

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ESCALAR: new European financing tool for SCALEUPS

The Escalar programme of the European Commission will double the investment already given to the most promising European Scaleups/Start-ups.

· A financing tool to support the growth of innovative companies that develop their activity in Europe.

· The 25% of European funds are guaranteed.

The main challenge of many companies nowadays that try to scale up in Europe, is not having enough money to grow. This problem could disappear with the call ESCALAR of the European Commission. Its main objective is that companies can continue growing and creating jobs in Europe. This programme will double the funds already given to European Scaleups/Start-ups with a financing budget of 100,000€ minimum, as well as specialised management. 50% of investment is backed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) of the European Investment Bank (EIB) with a guarantee of 25% DG-GROWTH through ESCALAR. Therefore, ESCALAR will enable the risk capital funding to increase a lot their investment capacity by financing the quasi-debt with EIB funding, guaranteed by the EFSI.

From Finnova Foundation, we invite all companies that are interested in scaling up (“ESCALAR” in Spanish) their business to continue growing and creating jobs. For more information, this afternoon the WEBINAR ESCALAR will take place: “EUROPEAN FUNDING FOR SCALEUPS” in the MIPIM webinar about Proptech House with professor Rudy Aernoudt, Chief economist of the European Commission, and Dirk Paelinck, co-founder of Proptech House. The call is today afternoon, 28th April at 4pm. To sign up: HTTP://

Finnova Foundation, Proptech House partners and boosters of Proptech Startup Europe Awards


For any other enquiry:

In Brussels: 0032 475 97 4277

– Press officer:

Lola Bordás, Phone: +34 619 11 02

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OKRA, the artificial intelligence company that can save lives

OKRA Technologies was named the best Female-Led startup in 2019

The company aims to transform healthcare by developing solutions that help bring the right treatment to the right patient quickly

15/04/2020 Brussels. Technology has become one of the best allies for scientists to continue research and for health care providers to save lives. Loubna Bouarfa, is the founder and CEO of OKRA Technologies , the startup of artificial intelligence that empowers life science professionals with AI driven insights anywhere and at any time. The company, located in Cambridge (UK) and in Leiden (Netherlands), is leading the implementation of AI in life sciences at the European level.

Dr. Loubna Bouarfa has fought tirelessly to move her project forward and has won several awards, including the Best Female-Led in 2019 at the special edition of the European Startup Awards. The Finnova Foundation helped her a lot, and thanks to this award the company has achieved visibility across Europe.

We spoke with Loubna Bouarfa to find out what OKRA Technologies is all about. A company that, without a doubt, can contribute its grain of sand to help healthcare professionals in the fight against coronavirus.

Q- What prize have you won, on which date and through by what means or institution?

A-My company was named Best Female-led Startup in 2019, at the StartUp Europe Awards Special Edition.

Q-What has Finnova helped you with or is helping you with?

A– StartUp Europe Awards is a fantastic initiative of both the European Commission and Finnova Foundation. This award has given us visibility across Europe, which is absolutely essential to boost small innovative companies like us and help us scale globally.

“The Eurovision for Startups” has built a powerful ecosystem, and has connected us with relevant stakeholders across Europe.

Q- How did you meet Finnova?

A- I met Finnova Foundation thanks to this initiative. I am very impressed by how Finnova is promoting a culture of innovation across the EU and beyond.

Q-Are awards for entrepreneurs or startups important?

A-Absolutely. As an entrepreneur, to me an award is an absolute honour, as it means a clear recognition of the value that my company is bringing to the world.

Q- What is your project about and how do you differ from the rest?

A- At OKRA, our mission is to support and transform healthcare, developing AI solutions that help bring the right treatment to the right patient at speed. We are here to unleash the potential of AI and use it to save and improve human lives.

We collaborate with the life science industry to create AI systems that accelerate thegrowth and create real value for healthcare, with the aim of having a direct impact on every step of the pipeline – from drug to patient.

The big breakthrough for OKRA’s technology lies not only in our capability to integrate huge amounts of data and extract relevant insights to drive actions, but also in the delivery of this information in a very user-centric way. Our AI systems are not black boxes: they are powered by explainability. This means that our predictions and suggestions are coupled with explanations, so that users understand the situation and are empowered to make the right decisions consistently.

What makes us different is that we develop trustworthy AI. I am a member of the European High Level Expert Group (HLEG) on AI, so at OKRA we implement the European AI strategy and guidelines, making sure that AI is lawful, ethical and robust.

Q- Do you think it’s hard to invest in a startup?

A-Investing in startups may be generally considered to be risky, but I believe that it is really necessary. Investing in a startup means putting money into a revolutionary idea that has the potential to change reality. For me, innovation is where money should be spent.

If a great idea turns out to be unprofitable, you can confidently say that at least you madean effort to challenge the status quo . But if a great idea comes to life, the consequences are unimaginable.

Q- How has your company evolved since you won the acceleration ticket?

A– Over the last year, OKRA has experienced great growth. Our team has doubled in size and we have a team of brilliant professionals who go the extra mile every single day to develop the best AI solutions for life sciences.

At OKRA, we develop AI products that are easily scalable. We believe that strong foundations and agile methodologies are the key to success in the technology industry.

This acceleration ticket has brought us really far.

Q- Do you consider that Startups are the future on a global level?

A– Definitely. Startups are the future because they can literally change the world. We need revolutionary ideas on a global scale, so that we can solve current problems and thrive with innovation.

Q- Do you think there should be more Startup Europe Awards? And what would you say to those entrepreneurs who are thinking of approaching European projects?

A- Of course there should be more Startup Europe Awards! There are many exceptional people in Europe and worldwide, and their game-changing projects need to be valued and recognised.

I would encourage all entrepreneurs to actively approach European projects, because they offer fantastic support and help boost companies to the next level.

In this video Loubna Bouarfa, Founder & CEO of OKRA Technologies, explains her journey in AI, the company mission and the amazing OKRA team.

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  • Send your proposals to participate in the Hachathon before Saturday 11 April at 10:00
  • Finnova, official partner of the European Commission, calls to participate in the Pan European Hackathon #EUvsVirus from 24 to 26 April.

10/04/2020 Brussels. The Finnova Foundation invites civil society, entrepreneurs, companies and universities from all over Europe to participate in ‘EU vs Virus’, the Pan-European Hackathon organised by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Innovation, in close collaboration with the EU Member States, on 24, 25 and 26 April.

The objective is to develop possible multidisciplinary solutions to fight against COVID-19 and other viruses such as SARS, Ecoli, Dengue or Malaria in order to offer practical, affordable initiatives.

The Finnova Foundation and its Startups Europe Awards program are official partners of the European Union and those interested in making suggestions or proposing challenges related to the coronavirus or others can send them to us at the following form: before Saturday 11 April.

From the registered challenges, between 150 and 200 will be selected at international level and then they will be worked on in the Hackathon #EUvsVIRUS.

Receive information and personalized mentoring on EU tools through the startup Accelerator

What is Pan-Eu Hackathon EuvsVirus?

It is a Hackathon with international and multidisciplinary teams whose primary objective is to respond with innovation to the crisis of the COVID-19 epidemic. In this first phase, a European call is made for the proposal of challenges to be discussed in the Hackathon. This event is an opportunity to align efforts with the European Commission and subsequently access European funds with different financial tools such as the LIFE or Horizon 2020 programme.

In this call the European Commission expects challenges defined by sectors affected by the coronavirus, which affects most sectors, economic activities and therefore it is necessary to identify them to find multidisciplinary solutions to provide practical initiatives, affordable and low cost.


Specific challenges can be proposed through the following link

Challenges will be received until Saturday, April 11th at 10:00 am Brussels time.


This Hackathon is open to innovators, companies, startups, universities from all over Europe, and partners at municipal, provincial, regional or national level.


The aim of Finnova and the Startup Europe Accelerator is to inform the winners about the challenges of EU financial opportunities and the different programmes to subsidise and implement new solutions, new jobs, remove legal barriers and help attract private investment and internationalisation.

Video #EUvsVirus:


The winners will be eligible as finalists for the COVID-19 Startup Europe Awards, a new category aimed at finding solutions to combat the coronavirus or other viruses such as malaria or legionella. This 2020 edition is aimed at innovative ideas from startups, universities and companies in all categories and that are focused on fighting the virus. The Finnova Foundation, through the Startup Europe Awards Accelerator, will mentor the winners in the categories of health, water, agri-food and environment with regard to European grants, calls, European legislation, networking and internationalization. The winners will participate in calls for proposals from the European Union, opting for up to 2.5 million euros in grants and 15 million euros in capital investment from the EU.

Open Covid-19 Startup Europe Awards Partner Search

To be able to carry out Startup Europe COVID-19 we call for the support of European, regional and national partners so that they can implement the awards in their field of action.

What is Startup Europe Awards?

It is an initiative of the European Commission, DG Connect implemented by the Finnova Foundation, supported by the European Parliament, members of the Committee of the Regions and the Economic and Social Committee.

  What is Startup Europe Accelerator?

It is a second level European Accelerator specialized in supporting regional and national entrepreneurship incubation programmes so that their best startups can access the resources offered by the European Union to internationalize their project and access the market through European projects, mentoring, networking, lobbying, legal advice and international communication.


-For any other question:

Juan Manuel Revuelta, General Director of the Finnova Foundation: 0032 475 97 4277

-Press officer:

Lola Bordás, Contact telephone: +34 619 11 02 66

Chamadas Notícias pt

Día Mundial de la Salud: Convocatoria Startup Europe contra COVID-19

La Fundación Europea de Financiación para la Innovación (FINNOVA) ha lanzado la convocatoria para entidades con ingenios disruptivos en la prevención, lucha contra virus y recuperación del COVID-19.

Los ganadores participaran en convocatorias de la UE optando hasta 2.5 millones de euros de subvención y; 15 millones de euros de inversión en capital por parte de la Comisión Europea.

Finnova, partner oficial de la Comisión Europea, convoca a participar en el Hackathon Pan Europeo EUvsVirus del 24 al 26 de abril.

07/04/2020 Bruselas.  Con motivo del Día Mundial de la Salud y ante la pandemia global del coronavirus, la Fundación Finnova lanza la convocatoria ‘COVID19 Startup Europe Awards para apoyar las innovaciones en la prevención, lucha contra la enfermedad y recuperación ante COVID-19 y otros virus y bacterias como SARS, ECOLI, LEGIONELA, MALARIA, DENGUE, y otros virus futuros, que, a consecuencia del cambio climático, sean un riesgo para la salud humana.

COVID-19 Startup Europe Awards

La convocatoria de 2020 va dirigida a ideas innovadoras de startups, universidades y empresas en todas las categorías y que estén focalizadas en la lucha contra el virus. La fundación Finnova través de Startup Europe Awards Accelerator, mentorizará en los verticales salud, agua, agrialimentario y medioambiente a los ganadores respecto a subvenciones europeas, convocatorias, legislación europea, networking e internacionalización. Los ganadores participaran en convocatorias de la Unión Europea optando hasta 2.5 millones de euros de subvención y 15 millones de euros de inversión en capital por parte de la UE.

“Este 2020 los esfuerzos de Startups Europe Awards y la Fundación Finnova se enfocarán de manera prioritaria en buscar financiación e innovaciones para luchar contra el Covid-19”, ha indicado Juan Manuel Revuelta, director General de la Fundación Finnova.

Los interesados en participar en la IV edición de Startup Europe Awards para luchar contra el coronavirus u otras bacterias pueden hacernos llegar sus propuestas a través del siguiente formulario:

A continuación, pueden leer las convocatorias que actualmente están abiertas y pueden adaptarse a sus proyectos:

EUvsCrisis: 24,25 y 26 de abril

La dirección general de innovación de la Comisión Europea, en estrecha colaboración con los Estados miembros de la UE, organizará una Hackathon Paneuropea los días 24,25 y 26 de abril. El objetivo es conectar la sociedad civil, los emprendedores, empresas y universidades de toda Europa con el fin de desarrollar soluciones innovadoras contra el COVID-19. La Fundación Finnova y su programa Startups Europe Awards son partners oficiales de la Unión Europea y los interesados en hacer sugerencias o proponer retos pueden hacérnoslas llegar al siguiente formulario: para superar los retos relacionados con el coronavirus.

La Fundación Finnova y su programa Startups Europe Awards son partners oficiales de la Unión Europea y los interesados en hacer sugerencias o proponer retos pueden hacérnoslas llegar al siguiente correo:

Life contra COVID-19: proyectos de hasta 2 millones de euros subvencionados al 55 %

Los retos del COVID-19 y ODS de las Naciones Unidas destacan los proyectos innovadores en materia de gestión de aguas y la gestión de residuos que permitan higienizar y prevenir la contaminación de virus y bacterias.

La convocatoria Life abierta financia proyectos innovadores ambientales que ayuden a prevenir virus y bacterias. Se esperan propuestas multidisciplinares.

El plazo para los proyectos de medio ambiente finalizará el próximo 16 de julio.

Salud EIC Accelerator contra COVID-19: Proyectos de pymes innovadoras hasta 2,5 millones de euros a fondo perdido al 70 %.

La convocatoria EIC Accelerator forma parte del proyecto piloto del Consejo Europeo de Innovación (EIC) que apoya a los innovadores de primer orden, a los empresarios y a las pequeñas empresas con oportunidades de financiación y servicios de aceleración. El objetivo de este programa es que las pymes innovadoras y pymes con innovaciones en la lucha contra COVID-19. formen parte de los mercados europeos. Los proyectos piloto de salud serán financiados al 70 % a fondo perdido con hasta 2 millones de euros.  

ESCALAR contra COVID-19. Nueva herramienta de la Unión Europa para invertir en fondos de capital riesgo de Scale-ups europeas. Proyectos entre 50 y 100 millones de euros.

Esta convocatoria es una iniciativa de la DG-GROWTH dela Comisión Europea que busca financiar fondos de inversión o entidades financieras cuyo compromiso sea invertir en SCALE-UP europeas o empresas innovadoras que facturen a partir de 1 millón de euros o que hayan tenido una ronda de inversión por esa cantidad. El plazo de presentación de candidaturas terminará en junio.  

Serán especialmente candidaturas de fondos de inversión especialistas en salud, y en materia de prevención y lucha contra los virus.


-Para cualquier otra consulta:

Juan Manuel Revuelta, director General de la Fundación Finnova

Teléfono de contacto : 0032 475 97 4277

-Responsable de prensa:

Lola Bordás , Teléfono de contacto: +34 619 11 02 66



Startup Europe Awards contra COVID- 19


EIT Climate-KIC #Accelerator in Spain opens call for entrepreneurship aid

If you have a great idea. If you have the courage to do it. If you have the will to go for it. This is the time.

The EIT Climate-KIC #Accelerator in Spain opens a new call for proposals for entrepreneurship, seeking to support the rapid growth of startups and their consolidation by overcoming the so-called ”Valley of Death”. It seeks to support the potential of business while sustainable innovation, both environmentally and economically.

It offers an 18-month program where you will be tutored and mentored at all times and with all the resources, offering the knowledge and tools to get the most out of your business and success.

For more information visit their website:


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Finnova will mentor the projects in their presentation before the European Commission.

The European Commission, add efforts, resources, and make a call to those SMEs and new companies with technologies and innovations that can help in “treatment, testing, monitoring or other aspects” to combat the COVID-19. In this exceptional call, projects can be less than 500,000 euros. Open emergency call for SMEs to submit a tender to combat the side effects of the coronavirus. .

Details of the call.

Urgent applications can be made next round of funding of the European Conseil of Innovations, to the EIC Accelerator, which remain open until next Wednesday March 18th at 5 p.m., Brussels time.  The budget of the call is a total of 164 million euros.

Juan Manuel Revuelta, CEO of the Finnova Foundation encourages companies to submit their projects, ‘Usually these projects are between 500,000 and 2,5 million euros, and in this case as an exception, they may be under 500,000 euros. In addition, projects that are of interest may be financed by other EC and external financial ways such as additional funding from regional and national governments or private foundations.’

In the light of the situation, the Commission is speeding the granting of these EIC subsidies and blended finance (together with capital investment) for innovations that support this cause. Access will also be provided to other sources of funding and investment.

Examples of innovations to combat the COVID-19 that are already being supported.

Some examples of innovations that have already been supported by the EIT that contribute to the fight against Coronavirus are EpiShuttle (specialized isolation units), M-TAP project ( filtration to remove viral material), MBENT Project (human mobility tracking during a pandemic).

Finnova supports in the application for these grants.

Finnova is the European Foundation for Innovation Funding, Lola Bordás, responsible for communication of the Foundation, reported that Finnova will establish open innovative strategies that contribute to provide disruptive solutions against this pandemic, and that facilitate public-private partnerships such as Helth Startup Europe Accelerator, project in which Finnova will focus its work

In the same way we also appeal to spread this call between all those companies and SMEs that can bring a solution or innovative idea. We can all provide solutions.

You can send us your proposals to

For further information, contact

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