European Space Agency Estonian Business Incubation Center is looking for awesome space related start-ups

European Space Agency Estonian Business Incubator (ESA BIC Estonia) which was opened in autumn last year, is waiting for novel space related startups to apply for 50 000 € grant.

Head of Startup Incubator in Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol, Martin Goroško, said that every company whose product or service relates to space is welcomed to apply. “Many companies don’t realize today that their product is related to space or it could be related with little effort. Applications using Satellite Navigation or earth observation data, novel materials or technologies – these are only few examples of services and applications that we are looking for,” explained Goroško

ESA BIC Estonia Manager Andrus Kurvits said that 50 000 € grant helps teams to take the next step in product development. “Our first call showed that Estonia is indeed an amazing space country and we have people and companies that develop novel space related applications. Last year we gave out first grants which were co-financed by our consortium partners, cities of Tartu and Tallinn, and were meant for product and IPR development. We are hoping for great achievements in international market from companies that got development grant. We plan to take two more companies in to our Incubation programme in spring call that is already open, “said Kurvits optimistically.

Application deadline for next call is 8th of March 2018!  For further information about applying look at

Incubation Programme helps to develop space related business ideas by offering technical support and business advice via mentoring and consulting. European wide ESA incubation network supports 140 start-ups every year at its 18 centres in 15 countries

ESA BIC Estonia is first of its kind in Baltic States. Its goal is to help 20 companies reach international market during five year period by providing them 50 000 € seed money and industry specific mentorship.

ESA BIC Estonia offers incubation services in Tartu and in Tallinn respectively in Tartu Science Park and in Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol.

ESA BIC Estonia Consortium has eight partners: Tartu Science Park (lead partner), Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol, City of Tartu, City of Tallinn, University of Tartu, Tallinn University of Technology, Tartu Observatory, and Kredex.

First three start-ups joined ESA BIC Estonia.

First open call of ESA BIC Estonia had five applications to join the incubation programme – four of them were from Estonia and one from abroad. Four teams had a chance to present their space related ideas to a jury of ESA and Local partners, who chose three ideas to join programme

Andrus Kurvits, manager of ESA BIC Estonia said that incubator’s main priority is to motivate and support companies to create and develop novel space related products and services that can be use both on ground and in Newspace. “In that notion our first open call was a success since two incubatees are related to Newspace and one with ground applications, “explained Kurvits.

Crystalspace is a spin-off company of University of Tartu and ESTcube-1, which main area is developing hardware for satellites. During the incubation period they will fully develop and market miniature portable vacuum chamber camera, that handles gasless environment and has low energy consumption

Spaceit main area is developing software for satellites. During the incubation period they develop universal cloud based Mission Control System for satellites, that runs as a service and uses worldwide network of ground stations. Spaceit competitive advantage is its security, quality and better cost-efficiency

Golbriak Space is a start-up company that develops optical communication for satellites and have cloes ties to FSSCat team, who won Copernicus Masters ESA main award. During the incubation period the hope to perfect their technology and product to get step closer market-readiness.
ESA BIC Estonia launched on 7th of November during the European Space Week. It’s a European wide space network that has 18 business incubators. ESA BIC Estonia’s goal is to help 20 companies during five years to reach international market, providing them 50 000 € start-up money and area specific mentorship. ESA BIC Estonia Consortium consists of eight partners: Tartu Science Park, Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol, City of Tartu, City of Tallinn, University of Tartu, Tallinn University of Technology, Tartu Observatory, and Kredex.

Communication between local government and citizen is going to be easier

Estonian winner of ESNC Jana Šubitidze is developing a mobile application that eases up communication between Local Government and citizen. The main idea of application is if citizen sees a problem that he/she wants to inform Local Government then he/she can do it instantly via mobile application

“Most of people have their smartphone with them everywhere for taking picture etc. That picture has its location and GNSS coordinates. Sending a picture of problem with short description it arrives to Local Governments database from where the problem can be dealt with” says the winner.

According to Šubitidze it was a surprise that she won. Prize money of 6000€ will be used for further development of the idea.

Martin Goroško the head of Startup Incubator has said that space and satellite navigation feel like something really far and complex for most people, so they cannot think of how space technologies and data could be used for solutions on the ground. “We started space themed business incubator with Tartu Science Park and ESA in this autumn to find more interesting space themed ideas and help them develop further, “explained Goroško

Estonia together with European Space Agency will launch the first space incubation programme in Baltics

The European Space Agency´s Business Incubation Centre (ESA BIC) Estonia is the 17th to be opened and the first one in the Baltics, joining the European-wide network which has fostered the creation of more than 140 startups across the Europe.

The ESA Business Incubation Centre´s goal is to create jobs and develop regional economies via the ESA BICs programme. The incubation programme turns space-connected business ideas into commercial companies and provides technical expertise and business-development support.

“Through our Technology Transfer Programme with its Business Incubation Centres we have already helped to create over 500 new companies with many new jobs in Europe, by spinning off Europe’s investments in space research and development and making them available to entrepreneurs. We promote progress and growth across Europe by making our knowledge and technology available to be used beyond space, and we are happy that Estonia joins with this new centre. Estonian companies have been cooperating with ESA for 5 years, and have demonstrated excellent space capabilities and potential for developing services and applications from space-related technologies,” said Johann-Dietrich Wörner, ESA Director General.


“From the first Estonian Satellite project – ESTCube-1, nearly 10 years ago, the Estonian Space sector has always moved forward fast. The opening of ESA BIC Estonia is the next big milestone for us. As Estonia is known for start-ups and a digital society, ESA BIC Estonia will combine space technologies with our already existing digital society to create more value on both sides. Combining our existing e-services with Earth observation data and satellite navigation services is the next step forward. Also it will be a platform where engineers and scientists can create novel products or services using space technologies, “ said Urve Palo, Estonian Minister of Entrepreneurship and Information Technology.


Andrus Kurvits, Manager of ESA BIC Estonia, pointed out that the opening of ESA Business Incubation Centre Estonia is one small step for ESA, but a giant leap for Estonia and for Estonian startup scene. “We expect the craziest solutions and most creative teams and start-ups,” said Kurvits.

The implementation and the ongoing management of ESA BIC Estonia will be led by Tartu Science Park in cooperation with Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol and the activities will be in both

“Each year we are helping around 45 tech companies to reach a sustainable income or first private funding. More and more we see companies who are developing space related technologies and together with ESA we can offer them incentive funding of up to 50,000 EURO for product development and specific know how and mentoring, so 20 Estonian startups over 5 years can also reach the international arena. Today we are launching the first permanent open call for the incubation programme in Estonia, so all space-related amazing ideas could come to life,“ said Tehnopol´s Startup Incubator Manager Martin Goroško.

In 2009 Estonia started cooperation with ESA, so Estonian companies and research institutions could participate in ESA´s projects for the first time. In 2015 Estonia became a full member of ESA, which provided completely new opportunities for the Estonian space sector. Several studies and technology audits have demonstrated Estonia’s excellentspace capabilities and potential for developing services and applications from space-related technologies.

The BIC Estonia Consortium consists of eight partners: Tartu Science Park, Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol, City of Tartu, City of Tallinn, University of Tartu, Tallinn University of Technology, Tartu Observatory, and Kredex.


More information on ESA BIC Estonia:

European Space Week will take place in Tallinn – Estonia – from 3 to 9 November 2017. It will foster interaction between the space and digital community and will provide visibility to the rapidly changing space sector, its applications and the European Union Space Programmes Copernicus and Galileo. The main aim is to bring together the most important European space stakeholders, companies, partners and visionaries pushing the topic of space in Europe and beyond.

Find out more:

“500 New European Companies from Space”

Electric jet from ESA incubator start-up

18 September 2017 Thousands of new jobs and boosted local economies are the direct results of ESA’s investment in young companies through its business incubators, which have now fostered more than 500 start-ups that adapt space technology and satellite services for use on Earth.

From healthcare to manufacturing, sport to agriculture, the effort is an important driver for entrepreneurship and the creation of new businesses, as well as positioning Europe at the forefront of innovation.

A personal ‘flying car’ in the form of an electric jet taking off and landing vertically from our own backyards is being developed by entrepreneurs at the Bavarian incubator, completing its maiden test flight in April.

Quick city delivery

A Portuguese start-up has developed a last-mile delivery service by drone, highlighting its versatility by delivering a hot meal to an elderly isolated inhabitant as well as flying parcels over Lisbon’s rush-hour traffic.

“We set up Business Incubation Centres to help young entrepreneurs and start-ups create innovative services by the use of satellite services and space technology,” notes Jan Woerner, ESA Director General.

“Our centres have now helped to set up more than 500 new companies in Europe, creating many high-tech jobs and competitive products that have boosted regional economies.”

Cold plasma healing

In the UK, women can now receive the results of their breast cancer screening in just 24 hours, instead of the typical two weeks, thanks to a new approach from a UK start-up.

A German company has developed a treatment for bacterial infection in wounds by applying ‘cold plasma’ stemming from experiments on the International Space Station.

A French start-up offers improved direct communication with the ground for aircraft pilots, and wifi for passengers’ laptops, tablets and smartphones.

“We started our incubator initiative in 2003 as part of our Technology Transfer Programme to facilitate innovative entrepreneurship and to create new European companies by spinning off our investments in space programmes,” says Franco Ongaro, ESA Director of Technology, Engineering and Quality.

“Entrepreneurs, start-ups and small companies come with their own great ideas. In the centres we work with them to find ways to turn their creative ideas into successful companies.”

ESA’s incubation network supports 140 start-ups every year at its 16 centres in 13 countries, with two more in Estonia and Finland to open later this year. Several more are under preparation.

“Space technologies and their spin-offs are creating new companies with high-tech jobs, strengthening the European economy and our worldwide competitiveness,” stresses Jan Woerner.

“More than that, these new technologies also help us to protect Earth and develop a sustainable future for the next generation.”

Further information in ESA press release here.

For more information visit ESA Technology Transfer Programme and ESA Business Incubation Centres.


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