What is the BIND 4.0 SME Connection Initiative?

Through the BIND 4.0 SME Connection, innovative Startups will discover current industry challenges and get immersed in the cooperative Basque Entrepreneurial and Innovation Ecosystem through Open Innovation. Participating Startup teams have the chance to earn reputable reference customers while working on paid contracts implementing solutions in real environments for one or more leading local companies.

This public-private initiative, a new branch of BIND 4.0, led by industry Cluster Management Organisations (CMO) in the Basque Country, aims to connect them with exciting Startup teams, to provide specialized solutions for their open innovation, digital transformation needs.

The driving force behind the SME Connection initiative is to make the most of the connections and expertise gained from the BIND 4.0 Open Innovation Platform, in order to generate new collaborative opportunities between Basque SMEs and Startup teams worldwide, following the model of Cluster Challenges.

Startup Benefits

  • Real Projects with Real Turnover
  • Facilitated Access to Market
  • Rapid Implementation of Solutions
  • Reputable Reference Customer
  • Positioning and Visibility
  • Maintain Technology Ownership
  • BIND 4.0 Proven Success Model
  • Join the Basque Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Startups benefit from the active participation of technological SME companies seeking targeted solutions to joint challenges created by the SMEs with the Cluster Management Organisation.

Participating Cluster Management Organisation:

BIND 4.0 has formed strategic alliances with Cluster Management Organisations of the Basque Industry that are dedicated to foster innovation, economic development, sustainability, cooperation and growth in their markets. The CMOs participating in this initiative are: ACICAE, ACE, ACLIMA, and AFM-UPTEK.

cluster energia

What is the ideal Startup profile for this program?

  • Startups developing new technologies for the industrial sector and its related services, which have already completed their technological development. In other words, startups that have a product or solution that can be seen, tested, proven, or even already available on the market.

  • Startups that are no more than 8 years old, that present the use of new technologies to improve industrial processes and that are ready to accelerate their business development.

  • Startups with disruptive solutions that can be applied to the Energy, Advanced Manufacturing, Environmental and Automotive industries, including:

    Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Analytics, Computing, Cybersecurity, Artificial Vision, IoT, 3D Printing – Additive Manufacturing, Collaborative Robotics, Nanotechnology, New Material, AR/VR and so much more!

1st Edition Sector-led Challenges

In the 1st Edition of this program, leading Basque companies from dynamic industry cluster organizations defined twelve joint challenges that affect their businesses. The SME Connection Challenges are characterized by a common technological need shared by several businesses within each sector or industry cluster. Participating SMEs aspire to select a Startup solution that appeals to them, in some cases there may be more than one startup selected for a challenge. Alternatively, each Startup can have as many client contracts as they are capable of, the contracts are defined and signed directly with the SME companies and there is no equity exchanged. The first edition is already underway with 12 Startups working on 15 Projects with Industrial SMEs. The second edition call for startups will be launched in January 2023, please click the “Register your Interest” button to stay informed. 

cluster energia

Participating SMEs

There are many well-respected companies from the Automotive, Energy, Environment and Advanced and Digital Manufacturing sectors participating in this exciting initiative. These consolidated companies are seeking external solutions for their internal digital transformation needs and are active members of the Clusters promoting the industry challenges.

Kimua 1
Garita automotive
Metal Group
Indumental recycling

Key dates

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