10 new businesses are in line to win a share of €1,250,000 in business funding, mentoring and business support services  

ATHENS, 24 May 2016 – The Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award (HEA) has today announced the 10 finalists competing for the 2016 prize of up to €1,250,000 in funding as well as business support services (legal, accounting, marketing, IT, communication and HR services) and mentorship for their new commercial ventures.

In this year’s HEA, a total of 1,100 plans have been submitted – a record number of participants since the award programme began. Subsequently, the panel of judges, consisting of successful, experienced entrepreneurs and executives, carefully scrutinised each business plan, leading to the selection of these 10 finalists. The plans were selected based on their stated levels of sustainability, innovation, financial prudence and potential for job creation in Greece.

Jimmy Athanasopoulos, Chairman of the Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award, commented: “The increasing number of applicants for the Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award reaffirms our belief that entrepreneurship is key to the recovery and positive transformation of the economy. This year’s finalists are all examples of business proposals which reflect the values of sustainability and innovation, and we strongly believe in their future success which will in turn bring added value to our country and its economy.”

The 10 finalists for 2016 are:

Athlenda (www.athlenda.com) focuses on the optimization of athlete selection and development, primarily through offering equal opportunities to athletes from different socio-economic and regional backgrounds. It is an international online platform that combines scouting and networking features, bringing together athletes from all sports with individuals or organizations that can play a positive role in the development of their sporting careers.
Applicants: Eugenia Zachariadou, Lazaros Papadopoulos, Manolis Tsagkaridis, Nikos Sfingos.

BIO2CHP (www.bio2chp.com) offers a container-sized power generator to industries with organic waste, converting it into energy for their own needs on site, at an average price five times lower than the grid. Unlike existing alternatives, BIO2CHP facilitates a reduction in energy and waste-handling costs with an investment payback period within 1.5 years. A prototype has already been developed and operated for more than 3,000 hours under both controlled and industrial conditions.
Applicants: Dimitris Mertzis, Stefanos Tsiakmakis.

A technology-enabled chain of serviced apartments, houses and villas created by transforming existing residential properties. The company functions like a hotel, but instead of all rooms under a single roof, it operates individual properties spread across a city. blueground (www.theblueground.com)  serves corporate and leisure travellers in Greece, Turkey and soon in UAE.
Applicants: Alexandros Chatzieleftheriou, Alexis Maragkos, Andreas Nezeritis, Penny Papaconstantinou.

Bubbllz (www.bubbllz.com) is a mobile application that rewards users’ social media posts along with a web marketing platform that enables stores, companies and brands to display products and services through user-generated content. Users simply take a photo or selfie with the product they buy and a reward code is created. The picture is posted on social media and users receive instant rewards in the form of discounts, coupons, competitions, loyalty points and special offers.
Applicants: Konstantios Batsiolas, Georgios Thraskias, Panagiotis Chatzidakis.

B.L.T. is an innovative company that provides luxury road transportation and professional photography for tourists. Customers travel with ease and comfort in VIP people carrier vehicles to their chosen destination and the company’s expert photographers capture the entire tourist experience. On their return, customers download their photographic memories from B.L.T.’s digital platform ready for sharing on social media with friends and family.
Applicants: George Papaioannou, Nikolaos Tsatsis.

Carealia (www.carealia.gr) builds smart monitoring systems to assist in the care of dementia in homes and nursing homes. Interconnected devices, such as wearable and ambient sensors, combined with intelligent algorithms and clinical knowledge, support doctors and nurses to accurately and reliably assess patients’ symptoms and behaviour patterns, leading to effective interventions for improved care and quality of life.
Applicants: Thanos Stavropoulos, Vivi Ntrigkogia, Georgios Meditskos, Ioannis Kompatsiaris, Ioulietta Lazarou.

e.SENSIS (www.infisensis.com) is a disruptive, low-cost, easy-to-use security system for smart homes, commercial spaces, containers, etc. Its fully wireless, state-of-the-art infrasound detection technology was developed by Infitheon which holds a patent in Greece (EU patent pending). e.SENSIS is expected to gain a prominent position in a market that will exceed $3.5 billion in the US and Europe by 2020, and to create more than 15 jobs in R&D and marketing in Greece alone, as well as many more in manufacturing.
Applicants: Nikos Tsampieris, Serafeim Tsavdaras, Pantelis Potiriadis, George Gardos, Christina Deligianni.

Fieldscale (www.fieldscale.com) simulation software provides answers to the most critical questions raised during the design phase of any electrical hardware product, from smartphones to electric cars. Fieldscale’s technology delivers results ten times faster and helps engineers create safer, more efficient products and minimize production costs
Applicants: Vasso Kalaitzidou, Yiorgos Bontzios, George Bouzianas.

Raymetrics (www.raymetrics.com) aims to create a new, advanced and powerful 3D ceilometer for the aviation industry, aimed at providing additional data, essential for airports and meteorological agencies, such as Total Cloud Cover information (in 3D), Incoming Cloud Base Height, Planetary Boundary Layer Height (useful for weather forecasting and modeling) and Vertical Optical Range (VOR).
Applicants: Nikos Kontos, George Georgoussis, Matthew Woollard.

Sentio Solutions has developed Feel (www.myfeel.co), the first ‘Emotions Tracker’. The smart wristband monitors an individual’s mood changes throughout the day, while the proprietary algorithms recognize particular emotions. At the same time, the mobile application synchronises with the wristband to track mood shifts, and offers advice and exercise ideas, based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, to help achieve personal well-being goals.
Applicants: George Eleftheriou, Haris Tsirbas.

This year’s winners will be announced in early June, 2016.

The Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award, now in its fourth year, is administered on behalf of The Hellenic Initiative by the Libra Group which has committed €10 million to the programme. Between one and five winners are declared each year. Since the inaugural award in 2013, 11 winners have been declared, all of which are trading successfully and have created many hundreds of jobs in Greece. Other supporters include Piraeus Bank, Australia-based property investment and development company Jalouise Pty Ltd, Dimitri Goulandris and Onassis Cultural Centre. Amongst the winners’ supporters are Antidote, Intracom Telecom, Lykourezos Law Offices, Microsoft Hellas, People for Business, Reed Smith, SAP Hellas and White Room.

More information about the Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award can be found at: http://www.hellenicaward.com/en/.


About The Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award:
The Hellenic Entrepreneurship Award was founded in 2012, to support established and budding entrepreneurs by providing funding, support services and mentorship for start-up businesses. The Libra Group has committed €10 million to the programme which will help entrepreneurs in Greece to generate economic growth in their homeland. The award partners are Piraeus Bank Group which has contributed to the training and education of participants since 2014 through its subsidiary, Excelixi Center of Sustainable Entrepreneurship; the Australian based property investment and development company, Jalouise Pty Ltd., and Mr. Dimitri Goulandris.
Amongst the winners’ supporters are Antidote, Intracom Telecom, Lykourezos Law Offices, Microsoft, People for Business, Reed Smith, SAP Hellas, Onassis Cultural Centre and White Room.

About The Libra Group:
The Libra Group is an international business group comprising 30 subsidiaries active across six continents. The group has principal operations in shipping, aviation, real estate, hospitality and energy as well as a range of diversified investments. The Social Responsibility department of the Group takes numerous initiatives around education, entrepreneurship and philanthropy worldwide, including Libra Internship Programme, which supports about 100 young people per year, many of whom come from non-privileged communities. The Libra Group is owned by the Logothetis family. For more information, visit the website: www.libra.com

About The Hellenic Initiative:
Our Mission: Investing in the future of Greece through direct philanthropy and economic revitalization. We empower people to provide crisis relief, encourage entrepreneurs, and create jobs.
We are The Hellenic Initiative (THI) – a global movement of the Greek Diaspora.
Visit our website: http://www.TheHellenicInitiative.org/
Like us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/thehellenicinitiative
Follow us on Twitter: @THI_OneGreece

For further information please contact:
Christy Sotiriou
V+O Communication, Athens
Office: +30 211 75 01 213
Email: csot@vando.gr