List of  Success Stories

Govinda Upadhyay 
Graduate of EIT InnoEnergy Master's programme in Sustainable Engineering  

After undertaking his EIT labelled Master’s degree with EIT InnoEnergy, Govinda went on to found the award winning start-up LEDSafari. Govinda started with a vision of every child around the world having light to study – and he created a simple to make, cheap solar lamp and a programme for trainers who are now teaching children all over the world to make their own lamps.

Govinda is a great example of the EIT Alumni in action. He has benefitted from not one but two of the EIT’s Innovation Communities, having been accepted into the EIT Climate KIC Accelerator programme after his InnoEnergy master’s degree.
In 2015 Govinda was named on Forbes’ 30 under 30 list for best young entrepreneurs. He was also winner of the EIT Change award at INNOVEIT 2015 and winner of the MIT Enterprise Forum's Innovate for Refugees competition in 2016.


Julia Römer and Arno Zimmerman
Graduates of EIT Climate-KIC Summer School and Climate-KIC Phd Programme in Sustainable Product development

Julia Römer, graduate of the EIT Climate-KIC Summer School, founded Coolar with fellow EIT Alumni Community member Arno Zimmerman, who recently finished his PhD with EIT Climate-KIC. Coolar have developed an innovative and efficient solar powered refrigerator which has great potential in developing countries, particularly in regards to the refrigeration of vaccinations.

They have won numerous business concept awards such as the Berlin-Brandenburg business plan competition, and were named top 3 in the Handelsblatt Energy Awards in 2016. In 2015 Arno Zimmerman was named on Forbes’s 30 under 30 list for best young entrepreneurs and was nominated for the EIT CHANGE award.

Since creating the idea for Coolar in the Climate-KIC Summer School, Coolar have also been included in the EIT Climate-KIC Greenhouse Incubation programme and the Climate-KIC Accelerator programme, meaning that the EIT community has been with them every step of the way.


Kate Hofman
Graduate of the EIT Climate-KIC Summer School – The Journey

Kate Hofman, a graduate of the EIT Climate-KIC Summer School, is the CEO and co-founder of GrowUp Urban Farms. During her time with EIT Climate-KIC, Kate got the entrepreneurship bug. She quit her job, joined Climate-KIC’s business incubation programme and started running her start-up that produces sustainable fresh fish, salads and herbs in London using a combination of aquaponic and vertical growing technologies.

Kate was the winner of the EIT Change Award in 2013, and was elected a London leader in 2015, a position reserved for the capital’s most exciting and innovative new leaders in sustainable business.


Karens Grigorjancs
Graduate of EIT Digital Master's School

Karens Grigorjancs, EIT Alumni and graduate of EIT Digital Master’s school, has had an affinity with IT since he was a kid and he also developed an interest in making music, having played piano for more than six years. How to combine these two passions? Entrepreneurship was Karens' key. 

During the EIT Digital Master School in ICT Innovation, Karens had the opportunity to explore the entrepreneurial field and once graduated in 2015, he started his first job as a co-founder of a brand new startup that has the potential to rock the music scene, thanks to Plugify. As Karens says of his degree; 'I had a technical education and learned innovative and entrepreneurial skills that made me the perfect co-founder.' 
Plugify is the online marketplace for booking live music performances. Bands, DJs, ensembles, soloists: without you knowing it, the most talented artists may live around the corner. 

In 2016, Karens started a crowdfunding campaign that has raised more than €745.690 and he was a nominee for EIT Change Award in 2016.


Clémentine Chambon
PhD Student in partnership with EIT Climate-KIC

Clementine Chambon uses her wealth of knowledge in chemical engineering to fuel her entrepreneurial spirit. After graduating with a Master's from the University of Cambridge, she went on to do a PhD in partnership with EIT Climate-KIC at Imperial College London. 

In August 2014, Clementine took part in the Journey, The EIT Climate-KIC Summer School programme. That same month she founded her hugely successful startup Oorja: Empowering Rural Communities, a company which is developing innovative ways for rural communities to produce clean renewable energy and biochar from agricultural waste. This idea is not only fantastic for the environment, but it also has the potential to provide sustainable energy to hundreds of millions of people.

Clementine's success has been widely recognised internationally. She was included in the Forbes 30-under-30 list in 2016, and the MIT Tech Review's Social innovators of the year lists.


Yue Sun & Tianchi Li
Former EIT Digital Master's students

Just three months before finishing their EIT Digital Master School, Yue and Tianchi dropped out. No double degree. No EIT certificate. No Graduation Ceremony. Regrets? No, says Yue Sun, co-founder of CodeMao. Instead he and his partner Tianchi Li raised almost seven million euros in funding and are now founders of a company that employs 135 and is preparing to expand globally. "We were trained well," he says. 

Inspired by their love of cats, (Of which there are many in their office!) Yue and Tianchi's company CodeMao (CodeCat) provides a learning platform which teaches programming to children.
Despite leaving their degree early, the pair have become very successful. All it took was an idea and the skills they "brought from their EIT Digital Master's degree"

In 2017, Tianchi Li was named on the Forbes 30 under 30 list of best young entreprenurs in China 


Nils Rodday
Graduate of EIT Digital Master's School

Since graduating from the EIT Digital Master's School, Nils has become a worldwide expert on drone security. He recently spoke at a number of conferences and his story got global media coverage!

Nils stirred up the global drone scene in his EIT Digital thesis with his discussion on 'Exploring security vulnerabilities of unmanned aerial vehicles’. In this he showed how drones "can be easily hacked with a $40 kit". He is now widely regarded as an expert on the topic.

Nils has since moved on from his passion for drones and now looks to do greater things in space, the final frontier!
He currently works as a security consultant for IBM in the field of space and defense insurance. 

Read his Master's thesis here.


Simon Becker
Graduate of EIT Climate-KIC Summer School The Journey

After taking part in the EIT Climate-KIC Summer School, Simon co-founded Cabin Spacey in 2015. (No, its not a house of cards, its a wooden rooftop cabin!)

Berlin based Cabin Spacey have created a new genre in urban space by attaching smart modular cabins to cities’ existing infrastructure - Rooftops, Parking Decks, Gable Walls, Temporary Lots. They were awarded 15 000 EUR for winning second prize in the  'Smart Urban Pioneers' competition in August 2016

Simon's innovative young business builds smart modular cabins that can host up to two people.
These cabins could be the homes of the future: crafted from sustainable materials and designed to match the actual needs of those looking for a new home. Environmentally friendly, contemporary, intelligent, modular, flexible. No matter where you plan to live: Cabin Spacey exploits previously untapped potential.

Who wouln't want to live in a beautiful wooden rooftop cabin with views of a city skyline?!


Chris Monaghan
Graduate of EIT Climate-KIC Summer School The Journey

Chris grew up near New York City with a passion for innovation and education. He has an academic background in international politics and environmental policy. He joined Metabolic as co-founder, alongside the award winning Eva Gladek, shortly after its inception in 2012.

Chris built on his passion for innovation at the EIT Climate-KIC summer school. This helped him to stengthen and reinforce his position as Innovation Director at Metabolic.

Metabolic is a consulting and venture building company that uses systems thinking to tackle global sustainability challenges. They provide institutions and companies with the knowledge, tools and ideas to support improved decision making and implementation when it comes to addressing sustainability issues

Their core values 
Think in Systems         Do epic shit          Collaborate         Make it fly!        Empower others


Alicia Raftery
Graduate of EIT InnoEnergy Master's Programme

Alicia is an InnoEnergy Master's graduate in Nuclear Energy (MSc EMINE). In 2016 she was one of the proud winners receiving the Sigvard Eklund award at the SKC (Swedish Centre for Nuclear Technology) annual symposium in September 2016 in Hindås.

Driven by her passion for the field of nuclear energy, and through close cooperation with her KTH PhD student supervisor, Kyle Johnson, she created a composite nuclear fuel of uranium silicide and uranium nitride using a relatively new sintering method called “spark plasma sintering” (SPS). She even uncovered a new "unknown" ternery phase. 

Alicia has recently started her PhD and will spend the next 2 years in the USA, followed by two more in Belgium.
We can only imagine what she will achieve next!

Read more here


Allen Ali Mohammadi
Graduate of EIT InnoEnergy Master's School

During his InnoEnergy master's degree Allen unfortunately lost his grandmother to a heart attack. Wondering why the disease wasnt detected earlier, Allen was inspired to found Hippogriff AB with his brother. 

Their company has created a Complex Disease Detector (CDD), an accurate, non-invasive and inexpensive tool for the screening and early diagnosis of heart disease. This should be particularly comended for the fact that it allows patients to discover if they suffer from heart disease, even if they show no symptoms.

Allen was awarded the EIT Change award at INNOVEIT 2016 - The EIT's Innovation Forum. In 2017 he was included, alongside his brother, in the Forbes 30 under 30 list.

Watch his post award speech here


Elias de Keyser
EIT InnoEnergy Student

Elias is still in the process of finishing his dual EIT InnoEnergy Master's degree in 'Energy for Smart Cities' at the Universities of Leuven and Catalonia. 

In November 2016, Elias took part in 'The Young Talent Programme', part of European Utility Week 2016.
Participants were asked to respond to the question: "What's required to reach a new energy future and the 2030 renewable targets?" 

Elias was victorious in his response! He was announced as the winner of the Young Talent Award in early 2017.

Watch his post-award interview here


Francesco Bonadiman
EIT Alumni Community Manager & President of EIT Digital Alumni

Our very own Community Manager, Francesco Bonadiman, was recently awarded the EU Transport Innovator Challenge Prize, for his chatbot, designed to provide smart, immediate and sustainable transportation for everyone.
Francesco's idea collates geographical data into a chatbot which allows users (such as tourists or locals, mostly young people without a car) to reach in a "smart" and ecological way the very end of the road and, from there, walk on mountain paths to the huts.

Francesco is a great example of the EIT Alumni Community in action! His commitment to the EIT Alumni Board, his role as President of the EIT Digital Alumni Foundation, and his dedication to sustainable innovation embody the spirit of our community! 

You can read more about the competion here.
For more information you can visit Francesco's website 


Team from EIT Start-up Days Paris 2016

In December 2016, App'ero were chosen as the winners of the Paris edition of the EIT Alumni Start-up days. The team, composed entirely of EIT Digital students, conceptualised an app for bar-goers across the world. Their app allows users to find local bars, place orders through their phone (removing queue time!) and split the bill between friends.

Since December, App'ero have made their idea a reality. In June 2017, they were announced winners of the EPA national Start-up Awards in Paris. They then agreed with Meridien to have a 'proof of concept' in all their bars in Europe.
Finally, in late June they competeted in the JA Europe Enterprise Challenge 2017 in Helsinki. They were successful once again, and were proclaimed 2nd runners up in this prestigious competition!


Florence Gschwend
EIT Climate-KIC PhD Student and founder of Chrysalix

Florence is currently completing her EIT Climate-KIC supported PhD on the remediation of CCA-treated waste wood using iconic liquids at the Chemical Engineering department of Imperial College London.

Her start-up Chrysalix, which is based on a process developed during her PhD, aims to replace the entire petrochemical industry with a bioeconomy by using a carefully developed process which separates the components of wood so that they can be used to produce fuels.

The clever concept was awarded 3rd prize in the Climate Launchpad finals 2016. This year she was included in the Forbes 30 under 30 list of best young entrepreneurs for 2017.




Julia Wache
Graduate of EIT Digital Doctoral School 

Julia has always had the feeling that she wanted to implement something herself and improve people's lives with it. 

In attending the EIT Digital Doctoral School, Julia learnt to be an entrepreneur and after graduation she designed a business model centred on a startup selling tactile navigation belts that will help blind people navigate and orientate better.

After winning the VT Knowledge Works Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge in Virginia in the US, where her team won a $25,000 prize, she was also a nominee in the EIT Award 2017.


Eline Leising
Graduate of MSc. Industrial Ecology at Delft University of Technology and Leiden University

After winning the Pitch Competition of Climate-KIC in 2014, Eline is currently working in an international team of 4 young professionals on CaffeInk, of which she is the CEO.

CaffeInk is a start-up project aiming at extracting pigments out of coffee waste to support in sustainable ink production. 

In 2017, Eline Leising was an EIT Change Award nominee thanks to this project which wants both to find a sustainable solution to the amount of coffee waste that we daily produce and which is equal to the weight of three Eiffel towers (around 30 000 tonnes).

If you want to find out more, read the article on Horizon Magazine!


Julia Tasse
MSc. in Universal, Environmental and Ecological Sciences at the Universite Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI)

Julia is a passionate supporter of environmental sustainability and collected several awards: she was in the winning team of the UN Think Eat Save Challenge 2014. Following, she was awarded Best Business Idea and Public Prize and in 2017 was selected for the EIT Change Award. Together with Eline Leising, she is the co-founder of CaffeInk, trying to transform coffee waste in ink.

Julia is also co-founder of What The Food, a smartphone app that wants to reduce food waste in canteens. Read more here.

Currently, she is working as Marketing and Communication Coordinator at World Ocean Council. Let’s see what else the future has in store for her!


Laura Soucek
Co-founder of Peptomyc and EIT Health Alumna

In 2017, Laura was granted with a 5000€ prize and the possibility to participate in an international course in business growth – Ignite Fast Track – at the University of Cambridge. On the International Women’s Day, this entrepreneur and cancer research scientist has been awarded the Entrepreneur PrizeXXI by CaixaBank, co-funded by the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness.

Laura has a PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology from the University La Sapienza in Rome, and did her postdoc at the UCSF in the USA.

In 2016, her start up Peptomyc was chosen as the prize winning team of the annual EIT Health Summit, then it won the Health Catapult 2017 Biotech prize and was one of the winners of Headstart 2017. In September 2017, thanks to a highly successful Series A funding FCR to the tune of €4.2 million and led by Alta Life Sciences Spain, Peptomyc will have the opportunity to start industrial production and clinical trials with patients.


Philipp Hollberg 
Graduate of EIT InnoEnergy’s SELECT Master programme and Co-Founder of CAALA

Philipp graduated from his InnoEnergy degree in 2015 and later also participated in EIT Climate-KIC’s Accelerator programme. Thanks to that, he had the opportunity to combine his passion for the environment with the construction industry, making it more environmentally friendly.

His start-up, Caala, offers lifecycle assessment for greener buildings to enable building planners to optimise designs from an environmental, energetic and economical perspective. According to Philipp, the EIT InnoEnergy SELECT Master programme empowered him with the necessary skills to become a tech entrepreneur.

In 2017, Philipp was nominated for the EIT Change Award.


Wilfried Dron
Graduate of EIT Digital’s Doctoral School and Co-Founder of Wisebatt

In 2014, Wilfried Dron graduated in Paris at the EIT Digital Doctoral School. For his PhD he was supposed to work on devices with lifetime constraints, but instead he ended up to co-found run a B2B startup, Wisebatt.

The start-up span out of the EIT Digital Innovation Project ‘CPS Lifetime Awareness' to improve, analyse, and estimate the life of batteries in 2016, with the aim to commercialise results. Today, Wisebatt offers two products: ESTIMATE, which is a CAD tool that helps software and hardware engineers estimate and optimise the battery life of the device they are designing; and AWARENESS, which is an artificial intelligence programme that can predict with 92% accuracy when a device will fail because of a lack of energy remaining in its battery. 

In 2017, Wilfried was nominated for the EIT Awards Innovators.


Swati Pandey
EIT Climate-KIC Alumna and 2013 EIT Change Award nominee 

Swati took part in the EIT Climate-KIC Journey in 2011. She is the co-founder of Arboreal Innovations  an award winning plant biotechnology and bionutrition venture. Her company, which combines advanced R&D with sustainable and scalable supply chains of natural products, is currently focused on building an integrated value chain for Stevia leaf, extracts and formulations.

In 2005 her team was awarded the 'Public' award from Imperial College London. In 2013 she was nominated for the EIT Change award at INNOVEIT, and this year she was recently announced as the winner of the Cartier Women's Initiative A for Asia! 


Lynette Kucsma
RisingFoodStar participants and Co-Founder of NaturalMachines

Lynette is the co-founder of NaturalMachine, partner of RisingFoodStars Association (EIT Food) which elevates high potential agrifood startups to the next level in becoming the gamechangers of the future in an international playground.

The launch product of the start-up is a 3D food printer, Foodini, which prints all types of foods. It is the first smart kitchen appliances speeding up the process of making food with fresh ingredients: encouraging more people to eat healthier and rely much less on processed foods. All via next generation Internet of Things/IoT 3D food printers with Artificial Intelligence/AI. 

After being named by CNN as one of the seven tech superheroes to watch, by TNW as one of the Top 100+ Tech & Business Women Speakers you Need at Your Next Event, and speaker at events worldwide including Web Summit and TEDx, Lynette was selected as top-class innovator for funding under the European Innovation Council pilot, which aims to support entrepreneurs in their innovations.