Oulu, September 8, 2014 – The Future Internet CHallenge eHealth (FICHe) accelerator announced today that it will launch its open call for applications on the fifteenth of September 2014. Participation is open to all European eHealth small and mid-sized enterprises and startups eager to develop innovative applications in the eHealth domain using FIWARE technology
Accelerator program Selected companies and startups will enter into an 18-months challenge, split in a three phase acceleration programme. Going through the three phases, they will translate their idea into a field lab tested prototype, while elaborating their business plan and go-to-market strategy. The most promising and innovative companies from each phase will be hand-picked to continue to the next phase. 80 teams will enter the first phase, 40 will continue, and 20 will succeed in entering the third and last phase.
FICHe is open for applications on September 15, 2014 and closes on October 31, 2014. The latest updates can be found on F6S or Twitter: @FICHe_EU.
Once entered the FICHe accelerator, the startups and SMEs will have access to:
• Support and coaching by more than 50 affiliated mentors; • Online and onsite boot-camps, technical training and business coaching; • Three dedicated living labs for co-creating and testing the applications; • Up to € 217K cash per team; • Over € 500K worth of partner services through ‘F6S deals’; • Pan-European exposure during events, on websites and social media and in magazines.
Initiator of the FICHe project and consortium Paul Pelsmaeker took the initiative for the FICHe accelerator program in 2013. Pelsmaeker: “When I heard for the first time about the ambition of the European Commission Future Internet PPP, I quickly realized the potential it holds for the eHealth domain. Both look for innovation that translate into successful businesses. And that is where FICHe comes in to play.”
Project coordinator Satu Väinämö will be leading the project. Väinämö: “I'm excited to lead the FICHe accelerator as it brings a truly great opportunity for European startups and SMEs with viable ideas to break through. I look forward to seeing unique ideas and 20 excellent businesses at the end of the project.”
Jesus Villasante, Head of Unit for Net Innovation, at the European Commission, DG CONNECT, leads the group of 16 Future Internet accelerators that challenge European SMEs and Startups to come up with smart business ideas. FICHe is one of these accelerators. Jesus Villasante: “This Future Internet-accelerator is a major opportunity that European SMEs and Web Entrepreneurs cannot miss. As part of the programme, 100 Million Euro will be invested across Europe in financial support, coaching and mentoring. This can be a great change in your professional life, get information and be prepared for the challenge!”
Why eHealth? With aging populations, European countries are spending an increasing percentage of their GDP on healthcare. The healthcare sector has been more resistant to the current crisis than other industries, continuing to attract investments. Innovation is now expected to have a big impact, making health access, management and delivery more efficient by the use of Information Technology. By empowering highly-innovative start-ups and small- and mid-sized enterprises, FICHe aims to make European healthcare more competitive.
FIWARE technology FIWARE is an innovative, open cloud-based infrastructure for cost-effective creation and delivery of Future Internet applications and services, at a scale not seen before. FIWARE API specifications are public and royalty-free, driven by the development of an open source reference implementation which accelerates the availability of commercial products and services based on FIWARE technologies. Stay tuned: @FIWare
Pan-European project FICHe is co-funded under the European Union’s Programme for research, technological development and demonstration.
Project partners are University of Oulu, Business Oulu, TIC BioMed, FFIS de la region de Murcia, TNO, Amsterdam Economic Board, Stichting zorgInc., Dutch eHealth Fund Management BV and Stichting Digitalezorg.nl.