SET Award

The 7th round of the SET Award is now running. Applications are being reviewed and the best 100 energy start-ups of 2023 will soon be released in our SET100 List. Stay tuned!

Jaza team on stage at the SET Award Ceremony 2022 while receiving the SET Award Prize in the category Clean Energy Access & SDG7

Win public recognition and lifetime opportunities

The Start Up Energy Transition Award (SET) is an international competition for start-ups worldwide who are working on ideas affecting the global energy transition and climate change. In the last seven years, the award has received more than 3,100 applications from over 100 countries.

Let this be a testament to the rise of innovation for the energy transition worldwide!

The SET100-List will be released in February. Stay tuned!

Award categories 2023

Clean Energy & Storage

Generating, storing and distributing renewable energy is central to the energy transition. This category focusses on start-ups decarbonising our most energy-intensive sectors and accelerating the adoption of new solutions.

Mobility & Transportation

Transportation and mobility continue to be one of the most essential but energy-intensive sectors. This category rewards creative solutions that span the large and the physical to the virtual and the digital.

Industry

Industry emits 33% of GHG emissions and uses 38% of global energy. Innovation here is one of the most important ways to decarbonise. A new category for 2023, could your start-up be the game-changer?

Buildings & Construction

The built environment accounts for 30% of global energy usage through construction, materials or just through temperature management. New for 2023, this rewards those creating comfortable, cost-effective, energy-efficient buildings of the future.

Quality Energy Access & SDG-7

This category rewards start-ups working with and empowering the communities that are most impacted by climate change. Innovations focused on positive social impact will score big here.

Clean Energy Generation Icon Orange
Smart mobility & transportation icon in orange
Industry categoryIndustry category orange
Buildings & Construction category
Quality energy access & SDG-7 icon in orange

Timeline 2023

1 November, 2022 – 16 January, 2023

SET23 application round running

The seventh round of the SET Award is launched and will run until the 16 January 2023. After this date, no application will be accepted. Apply now!

The seventh round of the SET Award is launched and will run until the 16 January 2023. After this date, no application will be accepted. Apply now!

17 January – 19 February, 2023 Now

Start-ups rating

Our evaluation partner rates the applications and determine the qualified applications that will be sent to the judges for final review. After that, the jury reviews the applications to select the best 100 start-ups of 2023 for the SET100 list 2023.

Our evaluation partner rates the applications and determine the qualified applications that will be sent to the judges for final review. After that, the jury reviews the applications to select the best 100 start-ups of 2023 for the SET100 list 2023.

22 February, 2023

SET100 & finalists revealed

The SET100 list with the best 100 energy start-ups of 2023 is released and the three finalists of each category are announced.

The SET100 list with the best 100 energy start-ups of 2023 is released and the three finalists of each category are announced.

28 March, 2023

Winners announcement

The finalists come to Berlin and meet the jury at the jury meeting to present their innovation. On the day after, the pitch their solution at the SET Tech Festival and Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue on 28 March 2023. In the evening, the winners of each category are announced at the SET Award Ceremony 2023.

The finalists come to Berlin and meet the jury at the jury meeting to present their innovation. On the day after, the pitch their solution at the SET Tech Festival and Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue on 28 March 2023. In the evening, the winners of each category are announced at the SET Award Ceremony 2023.

Prizes

Winner of category

  • €10 000 Prize money per winner

  • Profile of start-up celebrated across the World Energy Council’s global energy network in 99 countries

  • Opportunity to attend the World Energy Leaders’ Summit

  • Extra visibility and PR

  • Speaking slot at the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2023

Finalists

  • Round trip flights to and from Berlin, and accommodation for 2 representatives of the start-up to attend the SET Tech Festival and Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue

  • Connect with a C-level jury

  • Booth at the SET Tech Festival

  • Live pitches at the SET Tech Festival

  • Feature in the “Energy Frontrunners” series

  • Access to exclusive partner events globally

SET100

  • Feature in our annual SET100 list publication, which is circulated to investors, corporates, and political stakeholders across the globe

  • Free tickets to the SET Tech Festival 2023

  • Free tickets to the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue (BETD) 2023

  • Content creation: interviews & articles

  • Access to exclusive partner events globally

All participants

  • Inform and influence policies that will boost innovation

  • Have your voice heard and participate in the World Energy Survey

  • Winner of category

    • €10 000 Prize money per winner

    • Profile of start-up celebrated across the World Energy Council’s global energy network in 99 countries

    • Opportunity to attend the World Energy Leaders’ Summit

    • Extra visibility and PR

    • Speaking slot at the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2023

  • Finalists

    • Round trip flights to and from Berlin, and accommodation for 2 representatives of the start-up to attend the SET Tech Festival and Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue

    • Connect with a C-level jury

    • Booth at the SET Tech Festival

    • Live pitches at the SET Tech Festival

    • Feature in the “Energy Frontrunners” series

    • Access to exclusive partner events globally

  • SET100

    • Feature in our annual SET100 list publication, which is circulated to investors, corporates, and political stakeholders across the globe

    • Free tickets to the SET Tech Festival 2023

    • Free tickets to the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue (BETD) 2023

    • Content creation: interviews & articles

    • Access to exclusive partner events globally

  • All participants

    • Inform and influence policies that will boost innovation

    • Have your voice heard and participate in the World Energy Survey

Interested?

Learn about the criteria!

We welcome all energy and mobility start-ups falling under our criteria. Please note, applicants may only apply to one category and all subsequent applications to other categories will be disqualified. Previous applicants from other years are welcome to apply again!

  1. 1

    Founding year: The start-up must not have been founded longer than ten years ago. In other words, the date of foundation cannot exceed 2012

  2. 2

    Application language: As SET is a global competition with an international jury, the application, including any attached documents, must be in English

  3. 3

    Company registration: The start-up applying must be registered, or be in the process of becoming registered

  4. 4

    Technology readiness level: The start-up must be able to present a functioning prototype and a proof of concept or a client, and/or an industrial/corporate/institutional partner

  5. 5

    Completed form: The applicant must fill out the entire form. Partially completed applications will not be accepted

Terms & conditions

Download the official conditions and legal terms for taking part in the competition.

Terms & conditions (PDF)

‘’The SET Award gave us a significant boost of visibility and credibility. It was an exciting journey for us!’’

Enerbrain, SET Award 2020 Winner

A jury of global energy leaders

Start Up Energy Transition has set up an interdisciplinary and international jury of world-class experts in energy business, finance, and technology to select the best start-ups in each category.

SET Award 2022 jury at the jury meeting in Berlin
Source: dena / Silke Reents

Andreas Kuhlmann

CEO, German Energy Agency (dena)

Andreas Kuhlmann was appointed dena’s Chief Executive in July 2015. Among others, the graduate physicist has held positions at the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW), the German Embassy in Stockholm and the European Parliament, the German Parliament and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. He worked as a consultant and office manager at various political organisations and establishments, including the Environmental Committee of the European Parliament, followed by the SPD party, the SPD parliamentary group and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

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Angela Wilkinson

Dr. Angela Wilkinson

Secretary General and CEO, World Energy Council

Angela is one of the world’s leading global energy futures experts, an experienced energy executive, a distinguished Oxford scholar and a published author. She has 30 years of experience in leading national, international and global multi-stakeholder transformation initiatives on a wide range of economic, energy, climate and sustainable development related challenges. Angela has worked as a senior executive in the public-, private-, academic- and civic sectors. She joined the World Energy Council in 2017 to create a practical energy transition leaders toolkit and direct a new strategic insights programme. Prior to that Angela led an upgrade in strategic foresight at the OECD, based in Paris. Prior corporate experience includes decades in Royal Dutch Shell and British Gas plc. Angela is an Associate Fellow, Said Business School, Oxford and a Strategic Foresight Fellow of the GOA, USA. She sits on two international advisory boards (HSE, Russia; ECI, Oxford) and is a Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Science. She has published four books and numerous articles. Angela has a PhD in Physics.

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Dr. Antje Danielson

Dr. Antje Danielson

Research Director, MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI)

Antje Danielson joined MIT in April 2016 after 8 years at Tufts University where she directed the Institute of the Environment and was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Health. She was elected President of the Council of Environmental Deans and Directors in 2012, and holds a number of board positions. Antje received awards from Harvard University and an Exceptional Contribution Award from Durham University. In 1999/2000 she co-founded the car-sharing company Zipcar.

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Aneri Pradham

Aneri Pradhan

Chief Operating Officer Germany, New Energy Nexus

Aneri is an award-winning climate & clean energy ecosystem builder. She founded and built the largest energy access accelerator in Africa called ENVenture that was acquired by New Energy Nexus, and now serves as Nexus’s Chief Operating Officer. She also serves as Board Director for Rural Spark, a Dutch off-grid solar company, and as a Venture Partner for Prithvi Ventures, Alumni Ventures, and Republic.

Aneri has been recognized as Renewable Energy World’s Top 40 under 40 in solar, 2021 Ashden Awards winner for Energy Access Innovation, Nasdaq Milestone Maker, an American Express Emerging Innovator, Cordes Fellow, and member of the Forbes Nonprofit Council. She has a Masters in Environment & Development from the London School of Economics and a Bachelors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Hirad Horoufchin - Virgin Group

Hirad Horoufchin

Investment Director, Virgin Group

Hirad Horoufchin is an Investment Director at Virgin Group, the Growth and Venture Capital investment firm founded by Sir Richard Branson with a five-decade track record of driving positive change for consumers in several industries ranging from Music to Space.

At Virgin, Hirad oversees several early and late-stage investments, including in the mobility and climate tech verticals. Part of his role includes working with management teams on energy transition topics and investing in start-ups that are looking to drive the next wave of change.

Prior to joining Virgin, Hirad worked in Investment Banking at J.P. Morgan advising on M&A and capital market initiatives for companies in the industrial technology, chemicals, automotive, and aviation sectors. Hirad holds an MSc in International Finance from HEC Paris.

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Victoria McIvor, VC at World Fund

Victoria McIvor

VC Energy and Mobility, World Fund

McIvor specialises in early-stage energy and mobility start-up investment at the European climate tech VC, World Fund (and backed by Ecosia). With a background in entrepreneurship and the nuclear decommissioning, prior to World Fund McIvor worked at start-up Trende, an off-shoot of Japanese utility company Tepco, before joining Amsterdam-based, energy-focussed VC, SET Ventures for 3 years as an analyst and associate.

A recipient of the prestigious Daiwa Scholarship, McIvors holds a bachelor’s in physics and maths from the University of Glasgow.

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Julia Padberg

Julia Padberg

Investment Manager, SET Ventures

Julia Padberg is Partner at SET Ventures, the Amsterdam-based climate VC fund that has invested since 2007 in European technology companies that impact the future of energy. Julia joined the team six years ago after six years of working as a corporate finance advisor in the energy & green tech sectors. She serves on the supervisory boards of DEPsys, FlexiDAO, Trunkrs and Sensorfact.

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Taavi Madiberk, Skeleton Technologies

Taavi Madiberk

Co-founder & CEO, Skeleton Technologies

Taavi Madiberk is the co-founder and CEO at Skeleton Technologies (SET18 winner), the global technology leader for high power energy storage. Skeleton’s supercapacitors are succesfully in the field from trucks, buses, wind turbines, grid power back-up, medical equiment up to space. Skeleton has raised over €200M of capital and currently has a team of over 300 people in Germany and Estonia.

Taavi Madiberk brings knowledge and experience from the IT, locomotive and NGO sectors. Among other board positions, he is currently a board member of the European Innovation Council. He has also served as the youngest ever Chairman of the Supervisory Board in an European national railway company Estonian Railways Ltd (AS Eesti Raudtee) from 2012-2014, also as the Member of the Supervisory Board of RKAS, a Estonian state-owned real estate company with over €400M of assets.

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Sarah Röhm

Strategic Venture Capital Manager, Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners

DTCP is an investment management group with $1.7 billion in assets under management from corporate and institutional investors and provides venture capital and private equity to the technology, media, and telecommunication sectors. It operates and invests in Europe, North America, and Asia with offices in Hamburg, San Francisco, Tel Aviv, and Seoul.

Previously Sarah Röhm worked at the European early-stage VC Capnamic Ventures; in Tech Consulting focusing on digital transformation projects across Europe as well as in the Renewable Energy Industry during her time living in Shanghai. Sarah holds a M.Sc. in Strategy & Digital Business from ESCP Business School.

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Felix Krause

Felix Krause

Partner, Vireo Ventures GmbH

Felix is an active Business Angel as well as Start-up Advisor and Coach for Clean-tech, Mobility & Smart City companies. For the last four years, Felix worked as an Investment Partner at innogy Ventures, the venture capital arm of one of Europe’s largest utility companies. At innogy Ventures, he had the end-to-end investment responsibility for early to growth stage investments in North America, Europe and Israel for the investment fields Future Energy, Smart City and Mobility. Additionally, he led the “Future of Cities” investment segment (Mobility, Smart City and PropTech) for the expanded innogy Innovation Hub (60+ investments and €162m under management). Besides his various board roles, he regularly provided post-transaction support to innogy’s portfolio companies in the form of B2B sales and marketing training sessions as well as preparation for and support during follow-on financing rounds. Overall, he has been part of the start-up scene for more than 10 years, founding two companies himself, leading the European expansion of a US start-up as MD, and supporting founders as consultant, interim manager, trainer and mentor. He holds a MSc in International Business Studies from University of Maastricht.

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Robina von Stein, Contrarian Ventures

Robina von Stein

Investor, Contrarian Ventures

Robina is an Investor at Contrarian Ventures, the pan-European climate tech venture firm focusing on early-stage companies that work on innovations to decarbonize the energy sector, transportation industry, heavy industry, and urban space. Next to these industries, Contrarian looks at Carbon & Climate as markets separately. Robina has joined the team recently and manages the DACH market after founding and building the first circular economy software start-up in Germany for the last five years.

Robina holds an MSc in Politics, Economics, and Philosophy from the University of Zurich and ETH and recently joined the advisory board at dena.

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Solmaz Moshiri

Solmaz Moshiri

Head of Commercial for Digital Services, SSE Distributed Energy

Solmaz Moshiri is head of commercial for digital services at SSE Distributed Energy Solutions. She has been working in the UK low carbon electricity sector for over 10 years, in the areas of innovation, technology development & commercialization, and venture capital within utilities and start-ups.

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Jane Wu, Venture Cup

Jane Wu

Managing Director, Venture Cup

Jane is the Managing Director for Venture Cup China which is an international Innovation and Entrepreneurship Service Platform based in Shanghai. It specializes in global competition, talents attraction and STI transformation primarily in Green & Sustainable Technology. The current operating projects include University Startup World Cup and Nordic Innovation Centre (Shanghai).  She is also the Executive Secretary General for World Young Scientist Summit as an academic event held once a year for the world young talents. The summit is jointly sponsored by the China Association for Science and Technology (CAST) and the People’s Government of Zhejiang Province. It highlights the importance of integrating science with industries, venture capitals, arts and other societal endeavors as well as encourages multidisciplinary innovation among young scientist.

Before returning to her hometown, she has over ten years international management experiences in USA, Europe and Hong Kong.

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Dr. Christoph Wolff

Dr. Christoph Wolff

Director Green Hydrogen, ACME Cleantech Group and Professor, University of St. Gallen

A mechanical engineer by training Christoph was Senior Partner at McKinsey for 16 years, heading the global work in logistics and infrastructure. In the last 8 years as Member of the Executive Committee of the World Economic Forum and as Managing Director of European Climate Foundation, he engaged in net-zero transformation in energy and mobility. Before, as Board member of DB Schenker, he was responsible for the international growth and operations of the company´s rail division. He has been the CEO of companies in the renewable energy sector, namely Novatec/ABB GmbH and Solar Millennium AG. Christoph is on the board of several new energy start-ups and faculty at the University of St. Gallen, Institute of Mobility, and the Institute for Energy Economics at University of Cologne.

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Tina Schirr

Tina Schirr

Executive Director, BusinessNZ Energy Council

Tina Schirr is the Executive Director of the BusinessNZ Energy Council (the New Zealand representative of the World Energy Council). In her role she is shaping policy on matters relating to climate change, energy, transport, and innovation. She is a member of the Transpower Consumer Advisory Panel to help communities better understand energy. Tina a board member of the Young Energy Professional Network (YEPN) and part of the World Energy Council’s expert groups (for example on clean fuels and energy trilemma). She recently joint the start-up competition jury ‘Get in the Ring’. Due to her passion for entrepreneurism, she is always looking out for the next game-changer in the energy sector.

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Rusha Nanavatty - Third Derivative

Rushad Nanavatty

Managing Director Urban Transformation, Third Derivative at RMI

Rushad currently leads two programs at RMI: Urban Transformation and Third Derivative. Prior to D3, Rushad helped establish the Global Cooling Prize, a global innovation competition to develop a climate-friendly residential cooling solution. He also worked with the Energy Web Foundation, a partnership between RMI and Grid Singularity to develop promising applications for blockchain technology in the energy sector. Prior to RMI, Rushad was the founding COO of WeGen Energy — a DER start-up developing off-grid energy solutions and virtual power plants in the Philippines and Vietnam — and spent 6 years at McKinsey & Company in its sustainability, infrastructure, and private equity practices, leading projects in Africa, Asia, and the Americas.

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Stephan Franz, GIZ

Stephan Franz

Advisor Bilateral Energy Partnerships, GIZ

Stephan works is an energy innovation specialist with extensive experience in energy market innovation. Currently an advisor for the German Society for International Cooperation, he has worked across the energy market, from consulting on self-supply solar energy projects to conducting market studies on renewable energies, hydrogen and battery storage. He holds and MBa in energy management from Berlin’s Technical University.

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Alex Khripko - Third Derivative

Alex Khripko

Acceleration Manager, Third Derivative

Alex leads ecosystem programming at the Third Derivative accelerator, founded by the Rocky Mountain Institute & New Energy Nexus. Before Third Derivative, Alex herself worked on the SET platform. As a Senior Expert at dena, she managed over 2,300 start-up applications to the SET award across 5 years and supported the SET network in becoming a staple within the global climate community. Alex also supported external organizations like the GIZ and the Elia Group with their own energy innovation activities.

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