The common thread linking these six projects is cascade funding, a European Commission mechanism to distribute public funding to assist beneficiaries, such as start-ups, scale-ups, SME and/or mid-caps, in the uptake or development of digital innovation. This fact underscores Sploro’s unwavering commitment to enhancing SMEs and fostering innovation within the startup landscape across a spectrum of sectors, including female entrepreneurship in deeptech, quantum cryptography, agrifood, and ICT. The funding allocation allocation for this mechanism amounts to an impressive 20 million euros to be distributed over several years, highlighting the substantial financial investment in driving these ventures forward.
With our dedicated platform for managing open calls, we played a pivotal role in overseeing a total of five calls during this year. Notably, two calls were dedicated to select evaluators, one aimed at Next Generation Internet (NGI) beneficiaries, another one focused on collaboration between Europe and Canada in the NGI framework, and the final one was centered around finding deeptech solutions addressing pressing challenges in various areas. These open calls served as catalysts for bringing together bright minds and innovative solutions.
The response to these calls was overwhelming, with a total of 607 applications open on our platform. After a thorough evaluation, we sum up a total of 22 project proposals accepted for funding and we engaged with more than 30 highly qualified experts as evaluators and mentors.
In tandem with our project activities, we proactively advanced our commitment to foster cascade funding through a series of strategic initiatives. Notably, we organized seven Cascade Funding webinars, each delving into distinct themes aligned with the dynamic intersection of technology and industry. These sessions garnered substantial engagement, with over 270 professionals registering to participate. The diverse array of webinar themes encompassed ICT, Robotics and Automation, Agrifood (x2), Transport and Mobility, Immersive Technologies, and Advanced Manufacturing.
These webinars served as more than informational sessions; they became dynamic platforms for knowledge-sharing. Participants gained insights into the intricacies of cascade funding opportunities specific to each thematic area. Moreover, to amplify the reach and impact of these activities, we undertook calls promotion, ensuring that relevant stakeholders were informed and encouraged to participate.
Additionally, recognizing the importance of accessibility and streamlined information dissemination, we took a proactive step in creating a comprehensive and public database of funding opportunities. This resource facilitates easy access to valuable information, enabling potential beneficiaries such as start-ups, scale-ups, SMEs, and mid-caps to explore, engage and subscribe to cascade funding avenues effectively.
In charting our course for 2024, we embrace an optimistic and ambitious outlook, positioning ourselves as catalysts for innovation. With a commitment to empowering the innovation ecosystem, we are gearing up for an impactful year featuring 20 open calls. These calls, strategically spaced throughout the year, encompass both project proposals and opportunities for evaluators, creating a dynamic space for collaboration and idea exchange. The allocated budget for third parties in 2024 stands at over 9 million EUR, symbolizing not only a financial investment but a dedication to strategically fueling transformative projects that shape the future of technology and industry. At the core of our approach is the recognition that innovation thrives in a collaborative environment. Beyond the substantial financial commitment, these open calls represent our ongoing effort to cultivate a culture of excellence.
As we bid farewell to a remarkable year, 2023 stands testament to Sploro’s dedication, innovation, and collaborative spirit. The milestones achieved and the growth witnessed have set a solid foundation for an even more promising 2024. With an unwavering commitment to excellence, we eagerly anticipate the opportunities and challenges that the new year will bring. As we step into 2024, our collective enthusiasm, coupled with a strategic vision, positions us for continued success and groundbreaking accomplishments. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has been part of our journey thus far, and we look forward to shaping a future filled with innovation, collaboration, and impactful ventures. Cheers to a fantastic 2023 and the even greater heights we aspire to reach in 2024!