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News & Success Stories

Get inspired by how past participants have succeeded in bringing their business ideas to life.

Over the last decade, the ESNC has seen through thousands of business cases, many of which have already been successfully brought to market. Browse through a growing number of abstracts and check out the related links and documents for additional information. Got your own ESNC success story to share? Tell us about it here!

14.01.2016 | ESNC and 2014 Flanders/ ESA Winner


What is the purpose of innovation? Certainly to make our lives easier using new technologies. And this seems to be the main motto of Sensolus - the Flanders and ESA winner of the ESNC 2014. For more than a year the company has been working on a vision with the "Internet of Things", which is about connecting sensors and devices straight to the internet. Our winner has developed a new generation of GPS tracking system with 40 times the energy efficiency needed for optimising or improving a certain process in an industry in real time. The Stick n' Track device is as small as a pack of cigarettes, wireless, does not need to be charged and will send its location to the cloud every hour for three years. And even though this technology is very up to date, there seems to be no limit to the innovational thinking of the company's great minds. Soon they will be able to implement the same technology on stickers. This means no need for configuration, no wires, no charging - just stick to any device and it will send data or its location straight to the cloud. Sensolus is being supported by ESA BIC Flanders, as they have signed up for the incubation program of the European Space Agency (ESA). In addition also Deloitte adds value for them in many different domains. By now Sensolus has contracted its first customers and is proposing its devices to prospects in five countries. more

11.01.2016 | ESNC and 2015 UK Winner


Realsafe Technologies is not only the winner of the UK Challenge 2015, but made also the second place in the overall evaluation of the ESNC 2015. Spending a day with the Satellite Catapult team in Harwell afterwards, they had a chance to prove their skills - and they definitely did - as they've got a project right up their street. The multi award winning company which is a former BQ Emerging Entrepreneur focuses mainly upon developing unique safety - based technology services that directly connects users to the emergency services in their time of need. Finally, after three years of research and development with the focus on scaling the business and pushing the core product "REALRIDER" to the market, the company was able to secure a mixture of private investment, venture capital support and social enterprise loan amounting to £1m. This new round of investment will allow the technology innovators to make the company grow in terms of staffing as well as insure they have made "REALRIDER" the best it can possibly be. more

28.07.2015 | ESNC and 2012 UK Winner


In each episode, Business Planet talks to a thriving European entrepreneur and finds out about their keys to success. Watch the latest video and learn how to succeed in the satellite navigation sector with the help of the European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC)! To encourage SMEs to develop commercial applications using Galileo and EGNOS, the European Commission in partnership with the ESNC established the Galileo-EGNOS Prize Award Scheme (GEPAS). The current episode introduces the competition as well as the start-up iGeolise that won the UK prize in 2012. It served as their breakthrough and opened new business opportunities for them. more

21.05.2015 | 2013 Special Prize Winner :: Metaio

Stevenson Astrosat in SME focus interview by the Herald Scotland

With their WinterVision application for improved road safety and emergency location through Augmented Reality and GPS they had won the Metaio special prize in 2013. Recently, managing director and space enthusiast Steve Lee was interviewed by the Herald Scotland. Read about his company Stevenson Astrosat and how winning prizes in the European Satellite Navigation Competition and the Copernicus Masters has helped him launch his business. more

04.05.2015 | 2014 ESA Winner

News from 2014 ESA Special Prize winner Sensolus

The last months Sensolus, the 2014 winner of the ESA Special Prize and the Flanders Regional Challenge, worked intensively on the outdoor positioning service StickNTrack. Parallel to the market developments, the start-up signed up with ESA BIC Flanders, the incubation program of ESA (European Space Agency), which is serviced through ESNC partner Innotek in the Flemish region. Sensolus is very pleased to cooperate with Innotek on the particular technical and business challenges, tied to the continued developments of StickNTrack more

17.04.2015 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Austria


The start-up BikeCityGuide from Graz, our first Austria challenge winners from 2012, recently expanded to Berlin and offer their navigation app now in all German cities larger than 100.000 inhabitants. Since winning a prize in the ESNC, the start-up founded by Daniel Kofler and Andreas Stückl, grew to more than 20 employees now. BikeCityGuide will soon launch their new website Bike Citizens www.bikecitizens.net. BikeCityGuide is the first smartphone navigation app especially developed for cycling in cities. All of BikeCityGuide's navigation features rely solely on GPS to offer off line routing and navigation. Besides that the start-up also invented a smartphone holder named Finn. more

10.04.2015 | 2005 Overall Winner

VULOG delivers free-floating car-share service to Canada

The Overall Winner from 2005 has recently launched a car-sharing solution in Vancouver together with Evo Car Share, the city's only car-sharing service to offer a full fleet of 250 four-door, hybrid vehicles. VULOG, a true pioneer in the free-floating car-share industry, supplies the complete technology solution to operate the service composed of in-car technology, the operator fleet management interface, and smartphone interface. In 2005, VULOG had won the Sophia-Antipolis challenge and has since developed its solution and expertise, and operated the first prototype service at a time when no such offering was even available. more

01.04.2015 | 2014 Winners Flanders, Hesse, and UK


Over the last decade, the ESNC has seen through thousands of business cases, many of which have already been successfully brought to market. Plenty with support of the ESA Business Incubation Center (BIC) Programme.

Following their successful participation in ESNC 2014, already three winners have been approved for incubation at one of the 15 ESA BICs across Europe. This refers to the winners of the ESA / Flanders Challenge Sensolus, of the Hesse Challenge Uko Wapi? as well as the winner of the UK Challenge IPF.

The European-wide network of the ESA BICs is coordinated by the Technology Transfer Programme Office (TTPO) of the European Space Agency. They support selected entrepreneurs with comprehensive commercial and technical assistance to help them start-up businesses in the downstream markets of the space systems applications and in the exploitation of space technologies. ESA BICs help to create viable businesses and new jobs by providing support to 80 companies every year in Europe. More than 250 start-ups have been supported to date.

20.02.2015 | 2013 Overall Winner :: Bavaria / Germany


Impressions of the panel discussion on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the joint German Trainee Programme of the European Space Agency (ESA) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) at Deutscher Bundestag. KINEXON representative Dr Alexander Hüttenbrink together with top-class speakers such as Prof Dr Johann-Dietrich Wörner, Chairman of the Executive Board of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and designated Director General of ESA as well as Brigitte Zypries, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and Federal Government Coordinator of German Aerospace Policy. more

09.12.2014 | 2013 Overall Winner :: Bavaria / Germany


On 11 November, KINEXON - the overall winner of the European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC) 2013 - received the Smart Digital Award 2014 from Bavarian State Minister Ilse Aigner. Since winning ESNC 2013, KINEXON has continued on the path to success and made a huge technological breakthrough in the Internet of Things: Its centimetre-accurate (<10 cm) 3D localisation solution can now be used not only outdoors, but indoors as well! Having been launched at the world's biggest industrial fair, Hannover Messe 2014, the solution is currently being used by renowned customers from various industries. This includes professional sport clubs (athlete monitoring), retailers (business intelligence), hospitals and care homes (asset and patient tracking, fall detection), and manufacturers (smart factories, automation). The success of the technology has also led to significant growth within the KINEXON team. more

18.11.2014 | 2013 GSA Winner

GSA Winner takes off : company founded, Prototype Released, first clients acquired

After being named the "Most Promising EGNOS Application Idea" of the ESNC 2013, JOHAN started developing its prototype system in February 2014. In addition to implementing prototype tracking devices and online analysis software, the team has commenced a testing effort with three professional soccer clubs, three hockey clubs, and the Dutch national rugby team to improve the software's user interface. In August, JOHAN also became an official incubatee of the ESA Business Incubation Centre in Noordwijk. The company has already hired its first employees and is now looking to go to market in summer 2015. more

23.10.2014 | 2013 Winners

ESA BIC programme As main Driver to establish companies

Following their successful participation in ESNC 2013, six winners and finalists have founded companies with the support of an ESA Business Incubation Center (BIC). In addition to the GSA Special Prize winner, both the winners - Jan Walter Schroder and his team from Sensovo Navipal (ESA BIC Darmstadt) - as well as the runners-up for the ESA Special Prize Koen Beyers and his team (ESA BIC Flanders), have meanwhile entered the incubation programme. Other new incubatees include Willem Folkers, winner of the Netherlands' regional prize, at ESA BIC Noordwijk; Frank Englert and his team from Hesse's winner, Notificatio UG, at ESA BIC Darmstadt; and Mirko Antonini and his team from SpaceEXE Srl, winners of the Lombardy prize, at ESA BIC Lazio.

01.08.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Austria

BikeCityGuide runs successful crowdfunding campaign

With their mobile app specially designed to provide real-time navigation to cyclists in urban areas, BikeCityGuide recently convinced 160 micro-investors. Via the crowdfunding platform Green Rocket a total of EUR 136.550 was gathered within two months, which was way beyond anyone's expectations. BikeCityGuise is going to use the collected money to further expand to international markets and inspire more and more people to use the bicycle in their everyday lives. more

01.07.2014 | 2013 Overall Winner :: Bavaria / Germany

KINEXON wins another EUR 25,000 in EIT ICT Labs Idea Challenge

Nine teams from all over Europe had the great opportunity to pitch at the final round of the Idea Challenge for Cyber-Physical Systems in Munich. The high class jury included industry experts, investors, and entrepreneurs. The ESNC Overall Winner from 2013 presented its award-winning seamless location and motion sensing solution Kinexon ONE and its benefits for applications like asset and tool tracking or worker safety. Kinexon ONE provides centimeter accurate 3D position information both in outdoor and indoor environments. Congratulations on winning EUR 25,000! more

05.05.2014 | 2010 Regional Winner :: Nice-Sophia Antipolis / France


"Robocortex has developed strongly since winning at the ESNC, we received a lot of media coverage and were soon able to make strong ties with other businesses. We also developed and launched two more updates of our product Rox Odometry SDK 3.0." more

05.05.2014 | 2007 Regional Winner :: United Kingdom & Ireland

MobiAssist - Supporting Independent Lifestyles Through Mobile Telecare

It has been seven years since we won the UK & Ireland regional prize for MobiAssist, a device offering older and vulnerable people independence and support in leaving their homes. Assisted by the UK's Technology Strategy Board, this £1.6 million development - in partnership with the Co-Operative Group, Intamac, AirTrak, and Sure Technology - has now delivered an integrated care platform. Large-scale trials are now being developed, and the concepts have been used as part of our engagement. more

04.04.2014 | 2012 Special Prize Winner :: GNSS Living Lab Prize


"Looking at how Vamos! developed since winning at the ESNC it's safe to say quite a bit has changed. Vamos! now lists over 250 000 events, can be used 16 different languages and is helping people find events in 50 markets worldwide. Also Vamos! is getting ready to celebrate its 1 millionth user. " more

04.04.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Austria

BikeCityGuide 2.0

"Since winning in the ESNC, BikeCityGuide has really continued to develop into something fantastic, we've completely updated our app adding new cities, countries and languages. Also we launched a completely new app called BikeNatureGuide along with designing "FINN" our very own smart phone mount for bikes" more

19.03.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Hesse / Germany

ebuggy discovering new markets - a year after the ESNC

"After winning in the ESNC and being taken into an ESA BIC we were able to establish successful new partnerships and were selected to participate in a company exchange program that allowed us to get to know the US market and gave us the oppertunity to really test ebuggy on an exclusive course between San Fransisco and Los Angeles " more

19.03.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Ireland

Vicinity Systems - Electric Vehicle Journey Range Extension

"Our success after winning at the ESNC in 2012 just seemed to keep on going throughout 2013, in which we won three more awards for our next generation navigation technology. Currently we are within the final stages of development and hope to continue on as successfully in 2014." more

24.02.2014 | 2009 Regional Winner :: Bavaria

Avalanche Rescue Navigator - ARN

"During the four years since we won at the ESNC we really worked hard to turn our idea into a reality. Through continuous research, extensive development and strong partnerships including the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy we are getting ready to launch our product this year - the Galileo-AvalancheFon." more

14.02.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: Øresund / Denmark & Sweden

Roadroid expands to new regions

"We have greatly benefited from the ESNC's extensive network for satellite navigation applications. Along with the pleasant networking, the ESNC was instrumental in arranging a trip to meet the winning team from Catalonia. They initially aided our pilot activities and have been working with customers in Spain on integrating data into their specific contexts. We are also helping them plan a pilot here in Sweden." more

14.02.2014 | 2012 Special Prize Winner :: GSA

3SOUND concept to be further developed under FP7 project ARGUS

"For our idea, the ESNC was a stepping stone that helped us reach the next level. In addition to a support package valued at EUR 20,000 we also won the chance to complete a six-month incubation programme, which helped us gain credibility. We are now proud to say that the 3SOUND navigation concept is being developed and validated under the FP7 project ARGUS (Assisting personal Guidance System for people with visual impairment)." more

27.01.2014 | 2013 Special Prize Runner-up :: EPO

Intelligence on Wheels runner-up for EPO Special Prize

The ESA BIC Bavaria start-up Intelligence on Wheels was awarded an economic study on the market potential of its system, which protects railway workers by means of virtual dynamic balises (VDB) and railway collision avoidance systems (RCAS). "European technology companies are vital to the economy, attracting investment, and creating jobs," stated Oswald Schröder, spokesperson for the European Patent Office. "We encourage innovation by supporting European inventors in protecting their ideas. Intelligence on Wheels' innovation combines huge benefits for our society with a strong technological impact. The economic study prepared by experts from BGW will now provide them with valuable insights into the market potential of their innovation, as well as management advice in the field of IP." more

27.01.2014 | 2010 Special Prize Winner :: DLR

VADASE to aid in disaster management - after winning in the ESNC

"Winning the DLR special prize in 2010 was a great experience and opened a lot of doors for our start-up. The prize helped us develop our project VADASE (Variometric Approach for Displacements Analysis Stand-alone Engine) further and led to a strong collaborative relationship with DLR, which has given us access to tremendous technical advice and insights into DLR's technical infrastructure. Thanks to the improvements we have achieved, Leica Geosystems AG contacted us about integrating the VADASE algorithm into their reference station's GNSS receiver. This could lead to the production of independent, portable devices capable of providing tsunami warnings in real time." more

08.01.2014 | 2012 Regional Winner :: United Kingdom

iGeolise to hire six new team members - thanks to the ESNC

"Winning the ESNC introduced us to lots of people within the space community and led to considerable media coverage. I'd been trying to see a big potential client - without success. But when we won the UK leg in 2012, we were written up in the Guardian newspaper and within one hour they called us and asked to see Travel Time. They're now our largest customer - thanks to the ESNC. With the valuable support through the ESA BIC, we have recently also been able to hire six new team members." more

08.01.2014 | 2010 Regional Winner :: Hesse / Germany

flinc cooperate with BMW, Sixt and NAVIGON

"The incubation programme we entered after winning in the ESNC really helped us take off. We obtained access to experts and received valuable business support to bring our idea to market. Our resulting cooperations with BMW, Sixt, and NAVIGON represent a further step for us." more

08.01.2014 | 2012 Overall Winner :: Galileo Master

Media interest creates business opportunities for Galileo Master

"Thanks to the strong media coverage after our success in the ESNC, we started to notice a serious rise in awareness of our indoor navigation project. Through this new keen interest in our idea, we were able to generate multiple new contacts and even concrete business opportunities." more

Got your own ESNC success story that you want to share with us?

Simply write up a short overview about how your business took off after participating in the ESNC. Make sure to include the year and category in which you participated and provide an illustrative picture as well as an external link, e.g. to your homepage. Thanks. Please send your personal success story to: support@galileo-masters.eu



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