This week (37) we cover Agile Robots – the only Unicorn in robotics, Games Lift Incubator 2021 kicks off, emissions calculators for companies and Oktoberfest as a registered trademark.
- Innovations and developments in the startup scene
- Agile Robots – Unicorn in intelligent robotics
- Starting shot Games Lift Incubator 2021
- Emissions calculator for companies
- Insights and Info
- EU authority declares Oktoberfest a protected trademark
- Circular Valley – Startups wanted for decarbonization
The news is of course also available as a podcast for on the road
Innovations and developments in the startup scene
Agile Robots closes its Series C funding led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2
Munich/Beijing September 9,2021 – Agile Robots AG, a leader in Intelligent Robotics, recently announced the closing of a Series C financing round with a total investment of $220 million. The financing round was led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, followed by financial investors including Abu Dhabi Royal Group, Hillhouse Ventures, Sequoia Capital China and Linear Capital (in alphabetical order), as well as strategic investors Xiaomi Group, Foxconn Industrial Internet (“FII”) and Midas, founded by former Foxconn executives. Proceeds from this financing will be used primarily for product development in Munich and China, the establishment and expansion of series production in Germany and China, and the expansion of the company’s global sales activities.
Agile Robots had already succeeded in raising funding of over $130 million in two rounds in 2020, and it is now the company with the highest total funding amount for a smart robotics company. Agile Robots is currently the world’s only robotics unicorn with a valuation of more than $1 billion. With the closing of this financing round, Agile Robots is the first robotics company in which SoftBank Vision Fund 2 has invested in Europe and China.
Games Lift Incubator 2021 kicks off with five teams from Hamburg
Hamburg, September 10 – For five teams of game developers* from Hamburg, time starts in Gamecity Hamburg’s Games Lift Incubator. Supported by a comprehensive mentoring and workshop program with international industry experts, financial support and jobs in a co-working space, they will focus on the further development of their games projects until December. The three-month intensive phase of the Games Lift Incubator 2021 began on September 9 with a kick-off event for the teams and mentors. Games Lift is a program developed and organized by the Gamecity Hamburg location initiative to support founders in the games industry.
Margarete Schneider, project manager for the Games Lift Incubator at Gamecity Hamburg, explains what the participating teams can expect during the intensive phase: “Parallel to the intensive work on their games projects, the teams take part in a comprehensive workshop program and receive individual mentoring sessions. International experts from the games industry thus provide the teams with knowledge and tools to develop marketable games and position themselves successfully in the growing international games market.”
The content of the program is tailored to the participants and includes legal basics, product development using the Product Field Method, project management, pitch training and the development of PR and marketing strategies.
Just in time for the climate elections: German Sustainable Business Association and Plan A launch emissions calculator for companies
Berlin, September 14, 2021 – Climate change is man-made and will have devastating consequences for people and the environment if the main greenhouse gas emissions are not radically reduced immediately. Both the flood disaster in North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate this summer and the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change leave no doubt about this. One of the central tasks of the German government that emerges from the climate elections on September 26 must therefore be to sustainably transform the German economy as one of the key factors. How this can be achieved is demonstrated by the German Sustainable Business Association and Berlin-based Greentech Plan A, which are presenting a CO2 emissions calculator for companies that they have developed themselves and that is free of charge and accessible to the public.
The emissions calculator, which can be accessed at www.plana.earth/bnw-emissionsrechner, now offers companies the opportunity to obtain an initial realistic assessment of their emissions profile. To do this, the tool asks a series of questions about company activities – from employee commuting to spending on electricity, heating or other services – and thus collects the necessary data across all relevant emissions areas. Greenhouse gas emissions are then calculated and compared with industry values.
The methods on which the calculation is based comply with the internationally recognized Greenhouse Gas Protocol standard and are therefore scientifically sound – as officially certified by TÜV Rheinland Plan A at the beginning of September 2021.
Lubomila Jordanova, CEO of Plan A: “It takes decisive action and decisive measures to decarbonize our economy and make economic growth sustainable. And not someday, but now. Policymakers must create the framework conditions for this immediately. So it is up to the next federal government to pursue an ambitious sustainability agenda and drive the transformation process. The tools are already at our disposal. That’s why we’re delighted to go live today with our emissions calculator, developed in cooperation with BNW, to offer local companies a serious picture of their footprint as a first step on their sustainability journey.”
Dr. Katharina Reuter, Executive Director of the German Sustainable Business Association, said, “Many small businesses want to reduce their emissions in a sustainable way. A carbon footprint is the first step there. We are therefore very pleased to be able to offer a free emissions calculator in cooperation with Plan A, which provides an initial overview of the company’s emission levels. Together, we can still turn the tide and avert the climate catastrophe. This requires political guard rails and efforts from all of us.”
Insights and info
EU authority declares Oktoberfest a protected trademark
Munich’s Oktoberfest is world-famous. Many would like to profit from this and introduce Oktoberfests elsewhere as well. But the EU’s intellectual property authority has now declared Oktoberfest a protected trademark.
There must be hundreds of Oktoberfests around the globe. But the city of Munich does not agree. The case of a planned Oktoberfest in Dubai made the most headlines. Now the EU Intellectual Property Office has made the Oktoberfest a protected trademark.
For five years, the EU authority examined the application of the city of Munich. Now, at last, “Oktoberfest” actually appears as a trademark on the authority’s website with the status “registered.” In this way, the city administration wants to prevent uncontrolled growth and profiteering.
Trademark protection initially valid for five years
As of now, 22 different product classes are protected – from soap to credit cards to uniform rentals. The countless Oktoberfest copies that exist from Brazil to Dubai can continue to take place, but they now need permission to do so.
The worldwide less known term Wiesn and terms related to it, for example “oide Wiesn” or” Wiesn-Bier” have, by the way, been protected for much longer. The EU protection for the use of the term “Oktoberfest” is only valid until 2026.
You can get more information via this link: https://www.br.de/nachrichten/bayern/eu-behoerde-erklaert-oktoberfest-zur-geschuetzten-marke,Sj3M75o
Circular Valley: Start-ups for decarbonization wanted
After a successfully completed first round, the Circular Economy Accelerator in Circular Valley is currently looking for 15 new start-ups for its second cohort. Applicants should focus in particular on issues related to circular economy business concepts that have a significant positive impact on climate and decarbonization.
Circular Valley is the greater Rhine-Ruhr area from Bonn to Münster, the Rhineland, the Bergisches Land and the Ruhr region. Under the guiding principle “Grow the Economy – Protect the Environment”, economic growth and environmental protection are to be balanced in the future. In order to work together on a future that protects resources and minimizes or completely reduces harmful environmental impacts, creative start-ups are once again being sought that deal with innovations in the circular economy. With more than 70 industrial partners, the sought-after start-ups can benefit directly from the special structures of Circular Valley. In addition, there is the proximity to more than 300 industrial world market leaders, to leading companies in the recycling industry and the densest university and research network on the circular economy worldwide.
Through customized expert workshops and training modules as well as individual mentoring and coaching, innovative ideas and creative start-ups are supported in the targeted development of their ideas. The focus is on innovations in the circular economy, with an emphasis on the following topics: Resource conservation, product design for multiple use, manufacturing processes and technologies for circular solutions, recycling (car batteries related to e-mobility, metals and plastics), industrial application, consumer and consumer goods, and recycling technologies. Founders from these fields whose business models contribute to the circular economy are invited to apply.
The current application round for the second cohort of the Circular Valley Accelerator is open until October 15, 2021. The program starts with the kick-off meeting on November 22, 2021 and ends with the final DemoDay on March 3, 2022. Participation in the program is possible either in three on-site blocks or in presence during the entire term.