Full house, inspired audience and happy winners

07.02.2024 GRESODI, Idea Call, News

On February 6th, the awards ceremony for the Social Business Hub Styria Idea Call took place for the third time at the UNICORN Startup & Innovation Hub. At the evening event, awards were given to three teams that were scored the highest among the 49 submissions by the independent jury of experts. New this year: A special prize went to a junior company from Stainach.

The Board Members Kirsten Tangemann and Rüdiger Wetzl-Piewald welcomed the audience, photo: Nadja Fuchs

Around 150 guests followed this year’s awards ceremony for the Social Business Hub Styria idea call at the Unicorn Startup & Innovation Hub in Graz on site and via live stream. The very positive and inspiring atmosphere showed that people with passion and vision come together here. At the beginning of the event, State Councilor for Economic Affairs Barbara Eibinger-Miedl addressed the guests via video message, followed by greetings from State Councilor Simone Schmiedtbauer and City Councilor Martin Brandstätter. Among the guests was chairwoman Sandra Krautwaschl (The Greens), who attended the event as a long-time supporter of sustainable business.

In the subsequent discussion round, Remo Taferner (Managing Director Center for Applied Technology Leoben (ZAT) ), Daniela Adler (Managing Director Regional Management Oststeiermark) and social entrepreneur Thomas Winkler (founder Apflbutzn , GECO Festival) discussed with the SBHS board members, Kirsten Tangemann and Rüdiger Wetzl-Piewald about the importance of social & green enterprises and how more people can be motivated to run a social & green Enterprise.

At the end of the discussion, Fabian Gems, managing director of the sustainable packaging material manufacturer SUPASO, presented the success story of his company from its beginnings to today. Afterwards, Christina Jäger, a participant in the Social Business Hub incubation program, presented her impact startup Sclio, which offers sustainable and gender-neutral experiment kits for children. On the occasion of this year’s introduction of a youth award, Ewald Hötzl  from the Steirische Wirtschaftliche Gesellschaft presented the topic “Junior Company”.

Another program element was the Open Call launch of the new EU project GRESODI. The project, co-financed by the EU, aims to promote social & green enterprises in Austria, Hungary and Spain and to develop green and digital innovations. With partner organizations in Hungary and Spain, the Social Business Hub Styria is working to develop a method that can be easily adapted to the needs and challenges of different local communities in different regions and countries. In addition, an incubation program was developed for 15 impact startups from all partner regions that create sustainable and digital business models.

The focus of the event was on the three winning teams, supplemented by a special mention of a junior company:

The winners of the Idea Call 2023/2024:

PflegeZeit – seeing the person

PflegeZeit is a digital platform that aims to improve the mental and emotional care of older people in retirement homes and at home. It offers various content such as songs, poems, puzzles and more tailored to the needs and preferences of residents. It also promotes networking and the working atmosphere of nursing staff through employee profiles. PflegeZeit is an innovative solution that aims to enrich the lives of those in need of care and carers.

Alexander Loidl

Development of software for model-predictive control of heating (power) plants

Rabensteiner Engineering GmbH is developing a software called “ENTROPIA” for model predictive control (MPC) of heating (power) plants. The software is intended to increase the energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the systems by calculating the optimal operating parameters based on forecasts and internal models. The software will be simulated and tested in cooperation with a heating network operator over the next two years. Market entry is planned for 2025. The software is aimed at the growing and complex Austrian local and district heating market, which is characterized by the integration of renewable energies and industrial waste heat. The software is to be marketed via a license fee model.

Markus Rabensteiner

DUA – The app for your teaching

DUA – The app for your teaching was developed by the environmental systems scientist Maximilian Kottnig. It is intended to help improve and make apprentice training in Austria more attractive. Furthermore, the app is intended to solve a problem for society as a whole by contributing to greater appreciation for teaching, skilled workers and “simple professions”. As part of his master’s thesis, Kottnig developed a concept for an apprentice app that is intended to provide organizational support for the training process and to increase the quality and image of apprenticeship training in general and in particular for SMEs in Austria. This concept was developed with the know-how and feedback of a vocational educator, a managing director and three managing directors of Styrian SMEs from the trade and craft sector.

Maximilian Kottnig
kottnig@gmail.co m

Special mention Youth Award U20: Die Treberei

30 million tonnes of spent grain are produced in breweries worldwide every year: most of this valuable resource is destroyed. The 14-strong team of students used their beer spent grain noodles to develop valuable foods from these brewery waste that are also rich in fiber and protein, thus making a valuable contribution to the circular economy. With the support of Mag. Georg Frauscher-Emler, the young entrepreneurs found the perfect coach for their junior company and, together with the food designer Marius Lamprecht and a local baker, Markus Trafella, as well as other experts, they perfected and competed with their spent grain noodles against food waste.

Julian Zefferer

The three winning teams received a social business goodie bag in addition to a prize check worth €500. The Treberei was also pleased to receive a social business goodie bag for its 14 team members.

Our social business goodie bags for the winning teams are gym bags from mapbagrag, filled with Zotter chocolate, energy balls from bettilicious  drinks from Marry Icetea, soap from Dr.Banfai Seifen and the book “Do good and earn money” by Tina Eckert.

We congratulate all the winners – but also all the submitters of the Idea Call – and wish them much success in implementing their ideas. We would also like to thank all partners, sponsors, jury members and guests who made the Idea Call and the big award ceremony possible.

We are already looking forward to the next edition of the Idea Call and hope that we can encourage many more people to think about how to solve social and ecological challenges in our society.

The catering was provided by the social enterprises Marry Icetea and Töpferliebe .
We would like to thank Tina Eckert from 
Karmalaya for donating four copies of her book “Do Good and Earn Money” to our event.

Alle Fotos: Nadja Fuchs

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