More than 30 founders and CEOs of European tech companies have been invited by Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Education, Culture and Media, to share their experiences, visions and ideas for the rise of a European innovation ecosystem. The EU Commissioner stated: “We need European unicorns to pave the way towards Europe’s sustainable and resilient recovery, accelerate the green and digital transitions, and ensure Europe’s technological sovereignty.”
As a founding member of this EU Unicorns group, Skeleton Technologies’ co-founder and CEO Taavi Madiberk spoke at the kick-off meeting and introduced one of the key priorities highlighted by the founders to EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel: Europe’s deep tech leadership.
According to Taavi Madiberk, Europe is strong in R&D and deep tech in academia, the public sector can have a strong role as the early, supportive customer for frontier technology, mobilizing procurement to eliminate market risk before a new technology is commercially ready.
“Innovation must be in the DNA of public procurement policy. We cannot be always paying for the past, we need to invest in the future,” Madiberk noted. “With deep tech and the green transition combined, we are experiencing the largest industrial revolution. There will undoubtedly be winners and losers, which is why we feel the need for speed. The public sector can act as a catalyst, but solutions will come from the private sector.” He also suggested to launch a European flagship fund to act as a cornerstone in high quality IPOs for deeptech startups.
This newly-created EU Unicorns Group will provide thought leadership and contribute to creating a new generation of global champions coming from Europe.
Green transformation, tech sovereignty, deep tech leadership and innovation cohesion are the main directions proposed by the group. By ensuring innovation, Europe can contribute to its green transition and achieve strategic tech autonomy. The EU Unicorns Group dedicates to ensure Europe’s leadership in the next wave of innovation fuelled by new technological breakthroughs and science. Furthermore, ensuring innovation becomes essential to territorial cohesion and growth in the EU.
In addition, the group urged to reform public procurement and implement a new innovation-oriented public procurement policy able to buy early-stage innovations with low bureaucracy and a clear mandate to take risks.
The European Battery Alliance – of which Skeleton Technologies is a member – has been mentioned as a great model to duplicate in other deep tech sectors such as hydrogen, quantum computing, and 6G.
The EU Unicorns Group is comprised of more than 30 European Companies. The selection was based on the assessment of technology, capital raised, current and prospective company valuation (focusing on market potential), patents and other assets, or existing market leadership. In addition to Skeleton Technologies and Bolt, other members are: Adyen, Almotive, Bitpanda, Blablacar, Booking.com, Brainly, Cabify, Collibra, FacilityLive, Geneplanet, GTMHub, Hellasdirect, HMD Global, HotJar, Immedis, Indigo diabetes,Innovafeed, IO Biotech, Klarna, Lilium, Mintos, Neuron SW, Northvolt, Photoneo, Rimac automobile, Spotawheel, Supercell, TWINO, UiPath, Unbabel, Vinted, Zalando.
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