European consortium will develop a replicable model for implementing circular economy projects in cities and regions by improving collaboration between entrepreneurs, investors and policy makers

17 November, Klagenfurt am Wörthersee – The Horizon Europe project InvestCEC held its kick-off meeting today, launching its ambitious mission to increase investor confidence in circular economy projects, and boost the regional adoption of circular solutions.

The circular economy is one of the core principles of the European Union’s Green Deal. One of the main factors holding back the deployment of circular solutions and technologies is that circular business cases are often perceived as risky by investors. InvestCEC will bring entrepreneurs, investors and policy makers together in order to find a better way to collaborate, developing a replicable model for the initiation of circular economy projects in cities and regions across Europe,” explained project coordinator Dana Chudy from Enspire Science.

InvestCEC partners will develop a model for the initiation of circular economy projects based on four stages:

  1. Understanding the local conditions in a city or region and defining priority industries or areas for the implementation of circular economy projects
  2. Selection of entrepreneurs that can deliver effective solutions to address the needs identified in stage one
  3. Coaching of the selected entrepreneurs to increase their investment readiness 
  4. Launch of an investment programme including the establishment of a venture capital alternative investment fund.

A tailored stakeholder platform will be developed to streamline communication and collaboration between all the involved parties.

The effectiveness of the model will be tested in Klagenfurt am Wörthersee. The largest city in southern Austria, Klagenfurt is constantly seeking new ways to make the city more sustainable. It is represented in the project by Stadtwerke Klagenfurt, the municipal service provider.

As well as fostering the circular economy in Klagenfurt, InvestCEC aims to have a Europe-wide impact. A number of activities – including the creation of openly accessible guidelines, tools and materials – will be implemented to foster replication of the InvestCEC model in other cities and regions.

InvestCEC is associated with the Circular Cities and Regions Initiative, a collaboration and support scheme of the European Commission, launched as part of the European Circular Economy Action Plan of 2020. The Circular Cities and Regions Initiative aims to increase synergies among projects, disseminate relevant knowledge, and give greater visibility to best practices. Combining this knowledge sharing with technical and financial support, it offers comprehensive support to stakeholders across Europe’s cities and regions.

Project information:

  • Full name:Supporting the transition towards circular economy in European cities and regions: Development of a replicable model for local circular economy projects
  • Budget: €1,961,575
  • Duration: 36 months
  • Partners: Enspire Science Ltd (Israel), Venionaire Capital Gmbh (Austria), Fundacion Cartif (Spain), Greenovate! Europe (Belgium), InvestorNet-Gate2Growth Aps (Denmark), Materalia (France), Stadtwerke Klagenfurt Aktiengesellschaft (Austria)
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