Start Up Energy Transition (SET) is a leading international platform supporting innovation in energy transition. SET is implemented with the conviction that sustainable energy solutions and mitigating climate change is directly linked to a bridge between inventive business models and political will.

Start Up Energy Transition is an initiative powered by the German Energy Agency (Deutsche EnergieAgentur, dena) in cooperation with the World Energy Council launched in November 2016. The initiativeis supported by the Government of Canada as a country partner.

The SET platform is comprised of the annual SET Award, SET Tech Festival and a global network of innovators. The SET Award is an international competition for start-ups and young companies worldwide who are working on ideas affecting global energy transition and climate change. There are six different categories applicants can present their projects in. The 2018 categories reflect the critical issues facing innovation needed for the energy transition globally.

The three most promising start-ups in each category will pitch their business ideas at the annual
summit – the SET Tech Festival – which brings this impressive network of innovators together next spring. This event takes place alongside the “Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue” (BETD), and welcomes participants from the private and public energy scene. The Award Ceremony will be held following the Tech Festival at a reception hosted by the BETD in the spring of 2018. 18 finalists were chosen to pitch at the Tech Festival. Six winners claimed the 70,000€ in prize money at our Award Ceremony with the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue, with 700 high-level attendees present.

At SET Award 2017, the top awards were given to the 18 most promising start-ups from over 500 applications from nearly 70 countries and territories, completing six sectors: The Urban Energy Transition, Cleantech against Climate Change, Industry 4.0 meets the Digital Energy World, Mobility meets Energy Transition, Platforms and Communities, and Sustainable Future for All: Start Up SDG 7 (Sustainable Development Goals)

SET Adward 2018 information:

Participation Criteria

  • Applicants may only apply to one category. All subsequent applications to other categories will be disqualified. This also applies to the Special Prize: SDG-7.
  • The startup or innovation project must not have been founded longer than ten years ago. In other words, the date of foundation cannot exceed 2007.
  • The application, including any attached documents and pitch decks, must be in English.
  • Attached pitch decks must be no longer than 20 slides.
  • The startup or innovation project must be able to present a functioning prototype. In addition, the applicant must be able to present a legal framework, proof of concept or a client, and/or an industrial/corporate/institutional partner.
  • The applicant must fill out the entire form. Partially completed applications will not be accepted.
  • High-resolution company logo (300 dpi) as a .jpg or .png file for publication on the SET website and in the competition documents.
  • Participants are highly encouraged to fill in the World Energy Issues Monitor survey at the end of the application process.

Perks & Prizes

  • For all Participants: join the global platform of innovation leaders; connect with the keys actors of the energy transition and find potential partners; see your views represented in the Energy Innovators Issues Monitor; Inform and influence policies that will boost Innovation.
  • For the Top 100 Start-Ups: be included in our “Global Energy Transition (GET) 100” list, a yearly publication disseminated to our corporate partners and investors. 
  • For all Finalists: Return-flights to Berlin, and accommodation for 2 representatives of the start-up or innovation project to attend the Tech-Festival; Pitch coaching by innogy Innovation Hub; Individual booth at Tech Festival; Live pitches at Tech Festival; Investor-matchmaking; Tickets to the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue (BETD); Branding in all communication material; opportunity to take part in the Innovation day of the World Energy Congress 2019 in Abu Dhabi.
  • Winners of each category: Maximum cash prize of 10,000; Participation on the winners’ panel at the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue (BETD), Profile of start-up celebrated across the World Energy Council’ s global energy network in 99 countries; opportunities to attend a World Energy Leaders‘ Summit.

Selection Process & Timeline

  • November 14th, 2017 – January 31st, 2018: Application phase
  • January 31st – February 15th: Reading jury evaluation (Top-100 startups selected)
  • February- March 1st: High-level jury evaluation (Top-18 startups selected)
  • First week of March: 18 Finalists notified
  • Mid-April: High-level jury meeting & finalist pitching in Berlin at Tech Festival. Announcement of winners at BETD-hosted Award Ceremony

For more information, visit:

In March 2017, VCIC officially became a member of SET's network partners. Since then, VCIC has been able to help Vietnamese businesses connect with networks of innovators, international partners, start-ups and big corporation in the field of climate change around the world.

Some start-ups in Top 18 finalists at SET Award 2017

Aurelia Turbines Oy (Finland): Aurelia produces the most efficient small gas turbines in the world, which includes Industry 4.0 features. Its combustion process has been developed to use renewable and other non-standard fuels. With efficiencies above the competition, they are transforming distributed energy generation.

Sicoya (Germany): Sicoya is to help create a faster and more versatile internet by providing Silicon Photonics transceiver chips for optical intra-data center interconnects at low cost and with scalability for high volume mass production. The Sicoya solution consumes 4 times less energy than the State-of-theart data centers.

Blue Inductive GmbH (Germany):: Blue Inductive develops wireless superchargers for electric cars and mobile robots. They solve the problem of charging batteries conveniently and fully automated - without the need of human interaction. Their wireless chargers offer exceptionally high efficiencies of up to 95% and outperform other systems in terms of size, efficiency and costs.

Citizengage (India): Citizengage is a platform that forms the foundation of recycling economies by connecting, managing, and improving a waste-to-resource network. The network connects waste producers, transporters, processors, and recyclers to manage their behaviour and impact through unprecedented data visibility and performance management tools.