Eco-entrepreneurs encouraged to apply for Green Alley Award

29th June 2017
Alice Matthews

European startups with a green business idea still have until 25th July to apply for the 2017 Green Alley Award. Innovative ideas for the circular economy, resource conservation, recycling, and chemical handling are welcome. Interested startups and eco-entrepreneurs can submit their applications online. We cannot deny the relentless consumption in our society today, the result of which is more than two billion tons of waste generated worldwide each year.

That number is alarming and shows how urgently a rethink is needed. New solutions must be found and implemented in order to reduce the amount of waste generated and to recycle better. The enormous consumption of a wide range of materials presents the circular economy with unresolved challenges. That’s where the Green Alley Award comes into play, focusing on innovative ideas and the replacement of outdated methods.

The award offers young startups the opportunity to impress with their business model and assert themselves on the market with the help of experts. As it has every year, the 2017 award will focus on a European startup metropolis with circular economy potential: Dublin. The Irish capital is home to various pioneering tech companies, including Facebook, Google, and eBay. And for good reason, too, Ireland is the gateway to the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe, and the Middle East, serving as a springboard to other countries.

“Anyone familiar with the Irish business scene will quickly realise that Ireland is bubbling over with new ideas,” said Ron Immink, Patron of the 2017 Green Alley Awards, startup coach, and CEO of smallbusinesscan. “I see the Green Alley Award as a great platform for Irish pioneers to effect change in the circular economy. They’re breaking out of outdated structures and at the same time making profits with sustainable business ideas. The circular economy is a fundamental topic that we can’t get around in any life situation these days. And it’s far too important to be left to politics alone.”

With Immink, Green Alley was not only able to mobilise an experienced entrepreneur for the competition, but also an advocate and supporter of the circular economy in Ireland. Among other things, Immink serves as Entrepreneur in Residence for Sustainable Nation, which is part of the Irish government’s IFS 2020 strategy and plans to invest €250m in low-carbon business solutions by 2021.

Together with an international jury of circular economy experts and startups, he will evaluate the six most convincing ideas at the Green Alley Award finals in Berlin in early November. Before the finalists present their ideas live onstage, they will receive valuable advice on financing and business development in individual workshops with experts. At the end of the day, whoever wins over the jury in a live pitch will be named winner of the 2017 Green Alley Award and receive a package of cash and non-cash prizes worth up to €30,000.

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