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The EU to allocate €20 million to support Ukrainian start-ups


Photo: KOBU Agency /Unsplash

€20 million European Innovation Council (EIC) action supporting Ukraine’s innovation community. 

At least 200 Ukrainian deep tech start-ups will receive funding in the amount up to €60,000 each to further develop their innovation and business activities. The European Council has announced the partners in a pan-European network who will implement a €20 million European Innovation Council (EIC) action supporting Ukraine’s innovation community, according to a publication on the EIC website. In addition, the companies will also receive non-financial support, such as business advisory services, coaching, mentoring and matchmaking. 

Deep tech is a category of companies, or, as a rule, start-ups with a clear mission to provide technology solutions for significant scientific or engineering problems.

This ambitious action aims to provide a much-needed lifeline to Ukrainian start-ups and help them grow and integrate within the European innovation ecosystem, so that they can become key economic drivers behind Ukraine’s economic recovery,” reads the publication on the EIC website.

The initiative also aims to better prepare Ukrainian start-ups to compete for future EIC and other EU funding opportunities. Specific focus is given to support for innovative solutions for rebuilding Ukraine.

The action will be implemented over two years, with the first start-ups getting financing in 2023.

The €20 million support will be provided through a pan-European network of start-up associations, enterprise support centres, incubators and accelerators. The network, selected following a competitive call, is coordinated by Accelerator FundingBox in Warsaw, Poland. The consortium is made up of 22 organisations and start-up associations, including 6 Ukrainian partners, as well as partners in 13 other countries.

Relations between the EU and Ukraine in the field of research and innovation date back to 2002 when the European Community and Ukraine signed an Agreement on cooperation in Science and Technology. In 2016, Ukraine and the EU also concluded an agreement on the association of the country to the Euratom Research and Training Programme. The Euratom Research and Training Programme aims at improving the levels of nuclear safety and radiation protection. Noteworthy, Ukrainian start-ups get stuck at the Pre-Seed round and are forced to invest their own money in development or shut down altogether – 99% of them experienced this in the first years after the launch.


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