This week, 27 startups from all over Switzerland will travel to Zürich for the launch of the three-month programme Circular Economy Incubator 2020.
They all have circular business models – meaning solutions that are based on circular economy principles and activities like reuse, repair, resell, and refurbish – and they stand for a future where doing business is both economically and environmentally sustainable.
The concept of the Circular Economy is not new and when it comes to minimizing negative effects on the climate, it is widely considered very promising as an alternative approach to the linear economy, the incubator said in a statement.
Already last year, 26 Swiss startups went through the CE Incubator program and benefited from one-to-one coaching, workshops, networking sessions, coworking at the Impact Hubs, and access to the Swiss circular startup ecosystem and an expert pool.
For the 2020 edition, the program organizers focus on early-stage projects, as Jose Silva, Incubator program lead at Circular Economy Transition, says: “Based on last year’s experiences, this time we focus on enabling startups that are taking their first ‘entrepreneurial steps’ because there’s still a need for more bottom-up solutions in order to close the circularity gap. With a validated business model, a strong team, the right contacts, and entrepreneurial skills in their backpack, the CE Incubator startups will be able to thrive and grow their business sustainably after the program.”
The 27 selected startups will be incubated at the Impact Hubs of their respective city – in Bern, Geneva, Lausanne or Zürich. Although many of them are working in different industry sectors, their solutions are all based on circular activities. Sharing platforms such as TEIL.Style, Loopi, and Exnaton are fostering the reuse of clothes, strollers, and energy. Startups like LesCouchesRebelles, ID Watch, and Neustark are closing technical and biological loops and introducing circularity their products’ lifecycles, whereas digital platforms Whering, Swishy, and iCEEP uncover the circular potential of goods of daily use and encourage individuals to extend product life cycles. More information about the selected startups for the CE Incubator 2020 can be found here.
Apart from the Incubator program, Circular Economy Transition organizes monthly community events on the topic of Circular Economy and operates the Business Lab, a platform for corporates and SMEs that supports them in identifying circular business potential, optimizing their value chains and prototyping new solutions and products.