Urban Tech Helsinki is a business incubator that supports innovative and growth-oriented companies that focus on solving the challenges of modern cities. The main objective of the incubator is to seek clean and sustainable urban solutions. Operations focus in particular on clean energy, mobility, sustainable construction and urban development, circular economy and urban food production.
With the help of the incubator, the City of Helsinki wants to attract experts and companies as well as support and accelerate the creation and early growth of new companies, especially research-driven ones. In addition, the digitalisation of the city’s own operations and solving sustainability challenges will benefit from new innovations and networks. The Urban Tech Helsinki incubator will open a new call for applications for startups on 30 June.
“The Urban Tech Helsinki incubation period lasts 1–3 years, depending on the needs of the company. Our goal is to provide early-stage companies with sufficient time to develop their business and test their solutions together with the City of Helsinki’s Testbed and partner network,” says Kaisa Ahonen, Project Manager of the incubator at Aalto Startup Center.
Urban Tech Helsinki will accept applications for the 3rd batch from 30 June to 28 August 2022. Approximately ten companies will be selected. The Urban Tech Helsinki application criteria are:
- the company must seek solutions for the challenges of sustainable urban development
- the company has been established less than three years ago
- the company has a product that can be tested and validated in real life.
There are no other restrictions relating to the company’s field of activity. Urban Tech Helsinki also welcomes international teams that want to settle in Helsinki to do business. Now that the COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted, the incubator operates on the premises of Maria 01 and the aim is to operate on the shared premises as much as possible.
Incubator programme consists of workshops, coaching and startup events
Urban Tech Helsinki starts with an 8-week intensive period of workshops and group coaching sessions. The workshops focus on team building, business modelling, the impact of sustainable development, communications and funding that are vital to startups. Another essential part of Urban Tech Helsinki is the individual coaching sessions with the advisers of the Aalto University team that runs the practical operations of the incubator. The coaching sessions continue throughout the incubation period. In addition, various networking, startup and smart city events are an important part of the incubator concept, allowing companies to learn from each other, share experiences and launch solutions out into the world.
The companies selected will also receive membership to Maria 01, the leading startup campus in the Nordic countries, and support from the City of Helsinki and the top universities in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. The partner network includes Aalto University, the Metropolia University of Applied Sciences and the University of Helsinki. The partners also support the selected startups in their marketing efforts and help them to convey their message to cities, investors and potential business partners.
“With our help, the companies selected will become part of the vibrant startup ecosystem in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. When you join Urban Tech Helsinki, you will not be alone!” says Ahonen.
Helsinki wants to be Europe’s leading platform for innovative businesses
The aim of Helsinki is to be Europe’s leading platform for experimentation and innovation in business by 2025. The city also wants to develop business environments, promote employment for the residents of Helsinki and enable sustainable and knowledge-based economic growth. The Urban Tech Helsinki incubator contributes to all of these objectives.