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No Graduation Ceremony For Fit 4 Start, Visio-Pitching Session Instead

Due to the risks linked to the spread of COVID-19, Luxinnovation has decided to cancel the Fit 4 Start Pitching & Graduation Day which should have been held on 26 March 2020 at Kinepolis in Luxembourg-Kirchberg.
by: Silicon Luxembourg
photo: Marie De Decker
featured: Fit 4 Start

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Some 500 people (selected startups, jury, investors and the public) were expected to attend this event, which would have both rewarded startups that had completed the 9th edition of the Fit 4 Start programme and marked the launch of the 10th edition.

The Fit 4 Start acceleration programme, launched by the Ministry of Economy and managed by Luxinnovation in collaboration with Technoport and the Luxembourg City Incubator, was initially dedicated to startups in the information and communication technology sector. It has since been opened to startups in the space and health technologies sectors.

“A significant number of participants should have come from all over the world, including from so-called ‘risk’ areas. It was unreasonable to keep this event as it is, for obvious public health reasons”, explains Sasha Baillie, CEO of Luxinnovation.

However, the cancellation of the public ceremony does not in any way mean the cancellation of this programme. “Nor was there any question of penalizing entrepreneurs and young companies who have already invested a lot of energy in the preparation for this presentation session”, says Sasha Baillie.

“For some of the selected startups, this pitch is really a crucial step in their development.”

77 pitches

The 77 startups selected among the 362 that submitted an application will be contacted individually and “visio-pitch” sessions will be organized in the presence of the jury members. “For some of the selected startups, this pitch is really a crucial step in their development. By offering them the opportunity to present themselves, we are looking after both their economic and human interests,” says Stefan Berend, Head of Startup Acceleration at Luxinnovation and coordinator of the Fit 4 Start programme.

At the end of the call for projects, which lasted five weeks between December 2019 and January 2020, no less than 362 startups from 56 countries had applied. An initial pre-selection process resulted in the selection of 59 ICT startups and 18 Space startups. They will now present themselves by videoconference before the members of the jury who will ultimately select 10 ICT and 5 Space technologies.

These 15 startups, incorporated in Luxembourg, will receive funding up to 150,000 euros and will follow, for four months, intensive and personalized coaching by being hosted in one of the two partner incubators, Technoport or the Luxembourg City Incubator.

The content of this press release reflects only the opinion of the author, Luxinnovation

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