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NEPTUNE Blue Growth Accelerator Showcase Event celebrates the innovative projects led by SMEs

Press release #6, October 2018

On October 17th 2018, the NEPTUNE project organized its Showcase Event in Brussels. The final event of the Blue Growth Accelerator aimed to present the excellent results obtained and gave the opportunity to its beneficiaries to showcase their innovative projects through pitches, booths and networking sessions. 

The event gathered in total 117 participants, of which:

  • 74 SMEs;
  • 4 large companies;
  • 10 clusters;
  • 7 associations;
  • 14 governmental or public authority.

11 European countries were represented, showing the high interest for companies to search for new collaborations and ideas abroad.

After an opening speech from the lead partner Aerospace Valley represented by Ms. Fabienne Daveran – European Desk Manager, to provide an overview about NEPTUNE, Mr. Felix Leinemann – Head of Unit Blue Economy sectors at DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, European Commission and Mr. Gunnar MATTHIESEN – Senior Project Officer at the Executive Agency for SMEs (EASME), were invited to share information about existing and forthcoming European funds available for SMEs and the potential of Blue Growth in the EU.

The following four thematic pitching sessions: Environment & Marine Renewable Energies, Port Logistics & Maritime Transport, Environment and Water Management in Rural and Urban Areas followed this introduction involving the presentation of 24 projects funded through NEPTUNE. The SMEs showcased the activities performed so far and the impacts of NEPTUNE on their organisations from improved sales to jobs creation.

Each session was introduced by key stakeholders in the topic, large companies’ representatives and experts, who provided a panorama of the subsector and exposed their own strategy upon the domain as well as their interest for the innovations developed by SMEs and startups:

  • SBM Offshore, the market-leader in providing floating solutions over the full product life-cycle for the energy industry, represented by Ms. Stéphanie St Hill – Business Development Manager, presented the Marine Renewable Energies sector needs;
  • ADUR, a software developer company for Transport and logistics, represented by Mr. Lander Tolosa – Service Manager, introduced the Ports Logistics and Maritime Transport overall vision;
  • Veolia group, the global leader in optimized resource management, which designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions contributing to the sustainable development of communities and industries and represented by Ms. Marie-Christine Huau, Market Business Development Director, highlighted the actual and future issues addressed to coastal and maritime Environment;
  • FARAL Consult, a water infrastructure and management company, represented by Mr. Florin Iliescu – Water Management Expert, presented the challenges in Water Management in Rural and Urban Areas.

Ms. Anna Sobczak – Policy Officer for Clusters and Emerging Industries at DG GROW, European Commission, concluded the event by stressing out the importance and the added-value of clusters in the innovative SME support, notably through the cascade funding scheme carried by INNOSUP-1 projects.

Two B2B sessions and a networking lunch gave the opportunity to participants to exchange with each other. At the end of the day, 81 formal meetings took place in order to envision new opportunities and create new business partnerships, not including the spontaneous ones occurring all day long.

NEPTUNE partners are staying at the disposal of the awarded SMEs in order to support them further in the next steps of their development.

The complete catalogue of solutions developed by SMEs supported by NEPTUNE is available here.


Coordinated by Aerospace Valley, NEPTUNE which stands for New Cross Sectoral Value Chains Creation across Europe Facilitated By Clusters for SMEs’ Innovation in Blue Growth is a European Union funded innovation action financed by the INNOSUP component of the HORIZON 2020 programme.

NEPTUNE targeted the support of 100 European SMEs (individual or in groups) and the creation of 10 new companies in 15-20 new or reconfigured cross-sectoral/-cluster/-border value chains for the development of around 40 impactful and innovative solutions to improve existing or develop new technologies, services or products, improve production processes replacing or reducing the use of critical resources and deploy large scale demonstrators. It was driven by the integration of new technologies and know-how, facilitated by clusters in Water, Maritime, Aerospace, ICT, Microelectronics, Agrifood, Logistics, Creative Industries, Energy, and Mobility to foster the development of Blue Growth industries in Europe.

Main achievements

  • € 2.8 million of direct financial support;
  • 41 innovative projects;
  • 72 SMEs and 3 would be entrepreneurs beneficiaries;
  • 15 Large scale demonstrators;
  • 100+ coaching and mentoring services provided by the clusters partners.


Mrs. Pauline THEOPHANE, Coordinator, +33 (0)5 56 84 54 41,
Mr. Colin RUEL, Communication contact, +33 (0)4 94 03 89 03,
NEPTUNE Website:
Twitter: Neptune B_Growth
LinkedIn: Neptune Blue Growth Accelerator group

Neptune consortium

NEPTUNE project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 691554

Skåne-based company that works with water treatment solutions?

Skåne-based company that works with water treatment solutions?

A message from our friends at Invest in Skåne

A UK utilities company is looking for SMEs who have an innovative solution in order to incubate them and then purchase their product/service through a services agreement. The UK utilities company manages water treatment and delivery of drinking water over 1.2 million customers across a 2,600 km2 area. They currently supply approx. 266 million litres of drinking water daily.

To receive more information please fill out the following form: (English) (Swedish)

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Here are all the WIN Water meetings of 2019 – save the dates!

Here are all the WIN Water meetings of 2019 – save the dates!

Mark your calender for the coming WIN Water meetings during 2019!

  • February 7th
  • May 9th
  • September 12th (WIN-WIN Meeting)
  • November 7th

Invitation with location, venue and agenda will be sent out by email as usual to the WIN Water network. See you there!

If you are not a member and curious about our events, please contact our Event Manager Selina Voss:

Reflections from IWA 2018 in Tokyo

Reflections from IWA 2018 in Tokyo

Photo: Viktor Pelin and Susanne Steen Kronborg, VA SYD, in the Nordic exhibition booth and Sweden’s exhibition wall.

From 16 to 21 September 2018, the International Water Association (IWA) was hosted by the World Water Congress and Exhibition in Tokyo, Japan. It was very international and gathered almost 10 000 participants from around a hundred countries. In Congress, half of the visitors participated in the lives and pleasures of questions, discussions and presentations in 68 workshops and training sessions, 88 technical sessions with approximately 350 presentations and over 600 postings. These also visited the exhibition which attracted another 5,000 fair participants, mainly from Japan.

WIN Water attended the exhibition in IWA Sweden’s part of the Nordic stand. Kenneth M Persson gave a brief account of WIN’s work during Monday’s lunch for about 60 listeners. Several WIN companies exhibited in the exhibition area, and it is interesting to note that the Innovation Company AquaQ was awarded a gold medal by IWA in the competition for market-changing water technology and infrastructure at the IWA Project Innovation Award.

The actual Congress took its starting point in Agenda 2030, or the UN’s sustainability goals. All keynote presentations and many of the seminars had Agenda 2030 as the basic theme. It was about the cities of the future, with blue-green solutions to reduce heat waves, droughts and floods, and to increase the formation of groundwater in the city center. It was about ways of engaging citizens in society so that they became truly involved in processes and decisions that touched them.

Drinking water production in a changing climate showed that the problems facing water supply in Sweden had many parallels in the rest of the world. It was interesting to see that molecular biology methods come strong to measure and understand the microbial composition in raw water, waterworks and wiring. Several presentations showed that the fastest sequencing methods available commercially today can deliver bacterial data within two to four hours. Disinfection with UV LED technology as an alternative to fluorescent lamps was reported in some presentations. Increasing levels of organic matter due to leaching from soil and increased aquatic growth in lakes and streams was a problem that must be handled by waterworks in China, Japan, France and Sweden, among other things, by means of membrane technology and better control of the flocking in the waterworks.

The circular economy and recycling of water and nutrition from sewage treatment plants to agriculture was another main theme. However, ways to pack products from the treatment plant to clarify the value of water and nutrition are needed, since most of the resources for the present are donated, if anyone requests them. Japan has chosen to burn sewage sludge and, in some cases, extracts phosphorus from the ash from the combustion plants.

On several occasions, the need for more innovation in the water sector was reported. Good examples of innovation procurement were reported by Washington D.C. and Singapore, among other things. There were fewer examples of how open innovation was facilitated by market players. Rather, the speakers found that it was difficult to build such a network. Next time, the IWA World Congress in Copenhagen will be held in October 2020. WIN Water should take the opportunity to take even more space in the program. The water sector’s needs for innovation are far from saturated.

Reflections made by Kenneth M Persson, Founder of WIN Water and Professor at the Division of Water Resources Engineering at Lund University.

Photo 1: Kenneth M Persson, as part of the Swedish lunch lecture in the Nordic exhibition booth.
Photo 2: The Mayor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, holds the opening speech.

WIN announces that five water innovation projects have been awarded EU funding through Neptune

WIN announces that five water innovation projects have been awarded EU funding through Neptune

The WIN Water Innovation Network, through the EU project Neptune, distributes millions in grants to support innovations that develop technical solutions within water, agriculture and space. Six innovative companies have just recieved funding through Neptune. Companies that all can help in solving some of the world’s biggest challenges connected to water.

104 European SMEs and Entrepreneurs submitted applications under the NEPTUNE Blue Growth Accelerator Call in 2017. In total, close to 200 European companies have applied for Neptune in 2017.

The projects could be granted both financial support and business development support from e g WIN. We had several high-quality applications and eventually the following projects were selected for Neptune funding:

  • DiaPure AB – CyloP-Smart filters for recover phosphorus from wastewater.
  • 4ITAB and Vultus AB – Integrated coastal monitoring.
  • FloCell AB – Large-scale optimisation of chemical precipitation in water and sewage plants on the international market.
  • EPFF AB – Prevention of biofouling in marine and coastal heat exchangers.
  • Watersprint AB – The future water recycling product for households combining two patented technologies.

The projects are granted totally 250 000 Euro divided between the five projects.

– Neptune has given us opportunities to develop our concept to an international market and a shorter time-to-market, says Björn Olsson, MD at FloCell AB

– Win-Win for Watersprint, Sofi Filtration, WIN and the world with the Neptune sponsored water cleaner for households. Without the Neptune contribution, our combined water filtration and water disinfection product would have become a reality significantly later. Now, we have a good opportunity, together with our American partner, to immediately investigate if our product is good enough for US households, says Linda Kokkola, COO at Watersprint.

Moreover, the projects could also apply for coaching and mentoring services from WIN and other cluster members. In total, ten WIN project have been granted coaching from WIN.

The financing as well as the coaching and mentoring support will be one significant step to help these innovative companies to succeed – to everyone´s benefit.

– We are proud to give these companies additional support and resourses on their way to success. The financial support and coaching in combination with international contacts from the Neptune project create great opportunities for the companies, says Maria Sätherström Lantz, Manager at WIN.

The Neptune project has been a huge success in terms of number of applications and cross-border cooperations. There were certain key elements that made Neptune attractive for the entrepreneurs:

  • The accelerator approach with a simplified process to submit, shortened application and a time to grant of less than 3 months;
  • The cross-sectoral and cross-national dimensions, which allow SMEs from different sectors and countries to find complementarities in a joint project to develop innovative technologies, services and products;
  • The great potential for innovation and economic growth of the Blue Economy;
  • The possibility to finance prototype and demonstration which are, by far, the most requested types of support.


Jeanette Andersson
Project manager Neptune
+ 46 733 18 19 82

Maria Sätherström Lantz
Manager, WIN Water
+46 709 999 774

Next event

Sweden Water Research Day 2018

November 29
Studio Meetingpoint
Nordenskiöldsgatan 24
Malmö, Sweden
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