3.1 Who can apply for the open call?
The IMPACT Open Call is open to two types of applicants:
SMEs (legal persons) participating on their own (only one SME per application).
- Web Entrepreneurs (physical persons), or individuals, participating as individual or a group
As an applicant you shall be established, or at least your key management team, in any of the EU-28 countries or a FP7 Associated countries.
Moreover, to be eligible, your proposals have to fully comply with the eligibility criteria indicated in the “Guide for Applicants”, which are:
- The product or serviced must use FIWARE technologies
- The scope of the project must be in the Mobile domain
In addition you should also take note of eligibility criteria, as described in the “Guide for Applicants”:
- The same proposal must not be funded by more than one FIWARE Accelerator. If the same proposal, or a very similar one, has been already funded by another accelerator, the proposal will be excluded from the IMPACT process. More info in question 3.14.
- Only one proposal per SME or individual can be submitted. If more than one proposal per SME or individual is identified, the proposal will be excluded from the process.
3.2 If we have a partnership with a large company for product development, does this make us ineligible?
As you can see in the Guide for Applicants, Section 3, applicants must be:
- SMEs [legal person] participating on their own, only one SME (not a consortium of SMEs),
- Web Entrepreneurs [physical persons], participating as individual or a group.
A product development partnership, focused on technical or technology collaboration, is not a limitation for application per se.
Other kinds of partnership, e.g. business partnership or more specifically crossed share capital participations, with a large company should not breach EC RECOMMENDATION of 6 May 2003 concerning the definition of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (notified under document number C(2003) 1422) (2003/361/EC).
If the large company owns more than 25% of the SME’s shareholders capital, this would most probably mean that the small daughter company could NOT be considered an SME.
3.3 What type of projects are IMPACT looking for?
If you meet the criteria described above and your project’s focus is on an innovative way to do business in the mobile domain using FIWARE technologies, you are welcome to submit your application.
The type of projects that IMPACT consortium are looking for are Projects with a working prototype available and at least two founders who work full time for the project, where the founders still own 51% of Shareholders’ Equity and with a target market launch date that is set in six months time or if the product is already present in the market, has been so for less than seven years.
All these elements are recommended, they are not mandatory. The more closely the Projects match these criteria, the more likely they are to be selected.
3.4 Why is important to show project maturity?
Because IMPACT and FIWARE Initiative in general are looking for sustainable businesses, business that are able to develop new product or services, but also to transfer them to take them to the market and make a sustainable business with them.
3.5 Proximity to the market can be supported with potential client’s commitment letters?
If you have commitment letters, it is good to make it clear in one of the questions on Business Opportunity. You may add a link to an external resource where these letters can be screened by the reviewers. Keep in mind that reviewers may not have the time or opportunity to screen accurately these letters, so we suggest that you include the juicy details in the text of your answers. For instance, if you have a commitment letter from a famous large corporation, state their name in the text.
3.6 Why is important to show a Prototype?
Showing a prototype is important because it proves proximity to the market. At least more than those project not even having a prototype.
3.7 What do you mean by prototype/demo?
A prototype would be any non-commercial but functional product or service.
3.8 How do you expect that prototypes to be presented in the application process?
Inside the online form there is a specific field to include a URL where Prototype can be checked online. Otherwise also the field for the Video on the online form can be a good alternative to show how a prototype works.
3.9 Can I apply if I’m a single person?
An “Individual” can submit a proposal as indicated in the section 3.1 ‘Type of beneficiaries’ within the ‘Guide for Applicants’.
IMPACT looks for high potential start-ups and, in this sense; a consolidated team is one of the most important aspects of achieving success.
3.10 Can one company submit 2 project ideas?
No, according to IMPACT Open Call eligibility criteria: Only one proposal per SME or individual can be submitted. If more than one proposal per SME or individual is identified by the IMPACT team all the proposals of the applicant will be discarded.
3.11 Do we have to be constituted as SME?
No, it’s not a requirement, because as indicated in Question 3.2 web entrepreneurs can submit a Proposal. However, IMPACT is looking for consolidated projects, so although you can apply as an individuals, or as an SME in the process of being constituted, if you are selected as a beneficiary, IMPACT project will ask you to form an SME before the second milestone, month 3 of the acceleration program.
3.12 Do we have to be already selling or invoicing?
It is not a requirement, but it would be positively evaluated, because one of the objectives of the Acceleration Process is that all of the beneficiaries will be able to sell their product or service in at the end of the 6 months of acceleration.
3.13 If we are in another Acceleration Program, can we apply to IMPACT?
Yes as long as the Programs don’t overlap. If you are selected, you will have to sign a Declaration confirming that you will not be participating in another Acceleration Program, once you start the IMPACT Program.
3.14 If we are in another FIWARE Acceleration Program, can we apply to IMPACT?
The same Proposer can be founded for two different Proposals from two different FIWARE programs.
If a Proposer applying for a new Proposal have been already funded for a prior different Proposal by a FIWARE Accelerator, they can be asked to check that they are able to execute successfully two projects in parallel.
And finally, the same Proposer should not be founded for a third different Proposal. FIWARE is not willing to fund a Proposer for more than two proposals.
3.15 Is it possible for me to be eligible as IMPACT-participant with project A, while already being part of another FIWARE Accelerator with project B (while project A and B are not interrelated in any way)?
It is possible as far as the rest of the entrepreneurial team is different, project A and project B are different, and you yourself can properly justify your time commitment on both projects at the same time while bringing substantial value to project A. This said, if the Open Call Management Unit identifies an explicit intention to breach double funding restrictions, both proposals could potentially be declared ineligible for further funding.
3.16 What information should I include about the use of FIWARE in my application?
In your application you need to show a feasible architecture for your system, including some of the FIWARE Enablers. You can also include your current architecture if you like, along with the proposed one integrating FIWARE. Your project will be evaluated in the basis of this architecture, so it has to be consistent but does not need to be definitive, as it can then be subject of minor changes. If you are selected, you will have to send a final architecture proposal based on the one you propose in your application.
Regarding the technology map needed for your application, a diagram showing the different components of your architecture and the connections and interactions between them, plus a reference to your technology stack (both front and back end) is fine. If you want you can add some textual explanation that clarifies both, and help the evaluators understanding your technology.
3.17 Can a startup already funded by IMPACT after the 1st and 2nd Open Call, submit a different proposal to IMPACT for the third call?
Yes, you can. Limitation for multiple submissions apply only within the same Open Call.
Such a limitation aims to focus applicants in one single project during a certain period and to avoid dispersion of resources in several projects. As far as a project funded during the 1st and 2nd Open Call is already completed while starting the 3rd round of IMPACT Acceleration program this objective would be met.In any case this would be a second funding from FIWARE for the same beneficiary. As far as we were talking about different projects, it would be allowed: it would not be considered as a double funding.
However, keep in mind that the same beneficiary cannot be granted funds more than twice by FIWARE Accelerators no matter on which projects. So if the beneficiaries have already been granted a proposal in any other FIWARE Accelerator, plus the one in IMPACT 1st and 2nd Call, then they would not be eligible for IMPACT 3rd Call.
3.18 Can we apply to IMPACT even if we do not manage to obtain our company registration number from the National Tax Authority by the closing date?
As indicated in another of our FAQs "Do we have to be constituted as SME?", you can apply to IMPACT, even if you don't manage to obtain your company registration before deadline. You do not need to be incorporated as SME in order to apply. As specified in Section 3.1 of the Guide for Applicants, an individual can submit a Proposal.
Generally speaking, it would be recommended to incorporate because, the more consolidated the project idea is in legal terms, the higher score it will receive in the evaluation process. For this reason, if you have already incorporated your company and you only need the registration number, you can apply as SME. We will ask you the documentation to prove that you are a SME, once the evaluation process is finished and before starting the Acceleration Program, so well after the closing date for applications.
In any case, although you can apply as an individual or as SMEs in constitution process, if you are finally selected as beneficiary, IMPACT project will ask you to be incorporated as SME before the second milestone of the IMPACT Acceleration Program.
3.19 How can I apply for the open call?
You can apply for the call through the following link: http://www.fundingbox.com/IMPACT/apply
3.20 How long does it take to fill in an application?
It shouldn’t take long. You only have to fill in the contest application form. Specific character limits have been established for each field.
An important aspect of your application is the technology that is used in your project as you will be required to upload a Technology Map (including FIWARE Technologies Use Plan) as part of your application.
We encourage you to keep your proposal as focused as possible concentrating on the specific information requests made.
3.21 What type of support is available for preparing the proposal?
The “Guide for Applicants” is the main reference document. It provides more details about the evaluation and selection processes the many requirements and the acceleration program offered by IMPACT.
Additionally a Open Call Helpdesk service (opencall@IMPACT-accelerator.com) is on hand to clear any doubts you may have relating to the application process (eligibility rules, Application Form information requests, etc)
Finally a Technical Helpdesk service (firstname.lastname@example.org) is also available if you encounter any technical problem when filling in the Application Form.
3.22 What is the deadline for the application?
The deadline for the third call is October 15th 2015 at 13:00 (CET). No application will be accepted after deadline.