ESA competition to springboard SMEs into international markets
Today, ESA together with the operational and technical support of EURISY, launched its Global Space Markets Challenge. This competition is intended to be a springboard into international markets for small promising space-based companies in Europe, specialised in upstream and downstream activities.
Developments within small European companies continue to advance Europe’s expertise in technologies, create jobs, stimulate the space economy and benefit daily life through applications such as telecommunication, science data, Earth observation and navigation. This competition serves to extend their reach into international markets.
Six SMEs (including start-up companies) with excellent internationalisation plans will win prizes and promotion opportunities, including the chance to showcase their business at the 72nd International Astronautical Congress (IAC), expected to take place in Dubai from 25–29 October 2021 and to connect with the investor community and with financial institutions.
European space revenue in the upstream domain accounts for €9 billion – 35% of the global market. Revenue generated from downstream applications accounts for €70 billion which is just 25% of the global market.
ESA, in line with its Agenda 2025, has set up this competition to grow and support European space-based businesses by improving their visibility and worldwide competitiveness to help them be part of opportunities in the global space market.
Applicants can win by presenting the most promising and convincing plans to take their products and/or services to their target international markets.
Winners of the upstream category will also be offered the opportunity to attend an ESA event, such as the Industry Space Days. At this event winners of this category will be offered a company booth for a chance to network, create partnerships and introduce their business to a wider community of space-based companies and potential customers.
In the downstream category, Eurisy, a European non-profit association of more than 15 national space agencies and other organisations involved in space activities, which is partnered with ESA in this competition, will offer the top six downstream companies, the opportunity to have their products or services showcased in a virtual reality environment. This environment will be available online as well as through a virtual reality headset which will be used by Eurisy and ESA at international events and fairs.
On 10 September, ESA will announce 12 finalists. On 28 September, the delegates of the Industrial Policy Evolution Working Group (IPE-WG) will select the six best-placed applicants who will be proposed for nomination as winners to ESA’s Director General Josef Aschbacher who will grant the awards: three for the upstream category, and three for the downstream category.