MEG-students win the Hult-Prize Regionals in Tunisia
Article originally published by the University of Freiburg and can be viewed here.
A team of Environmental Governance (MEG) Master students won first place at the Hult-Prize Regionals in Tunisia on the 17. of March. The team, led by Laila Berning, Saji Zagha and Andrew Bonneau, won with their start-up project “Noor Medical” in Tunis against 33 international student teams from prestigious universities and business schools such as the Sciences Po Paris and the Hult International Business School.
The Hult Prize, a partnership between the Hult International Business School and the Clinton Global Initiative was established in 2010 and has become the world’s largest and most prestigious start-up event in the field of sustainable entrepreneurship. Annually, millions of dollars of investment capital are awarded to young budding entrepreneurs, including a grand prize of USD1Million for the final winner. This year the Hult Prize challenge is to “harness the power of energy to transform the lives of 10 million people by 2025”, with solutions concurrently tasked with impacting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
The panel of 15 judges included government policy advisors, CEO’s of successful startups and a representative from the United Nations Development Program. The attending teams had already passed through preliminary rounds in their home countries or local and online competitions to gain their place at the Tunis regionals.
“Noor Medical” aims to develop and distribute hybrid autoclaves that enable the sterilization of medical instruments in rural areas in developing countries with disrupted or non-existent electricity supply. The innovative hybrid solution allows for the use of different energy sources.
In the final round, the “Noor Medical” team, together with the winning teams from the 14 additional, worldwide Hult-Prize regionals, gained entrance to the world-renowned Hult Business Accelerator. In addition to the further development of the business model, the six weeks’ accelerator program, hosted at the Hult Castle in London, will provide access to capital, mentorship, marketing, business development, customer acquisition and talent recruitment.
“Noor Medical” is a project within the student start-up initiative “OneLife — Business Relationships for Sustainable Development” for which the MEG-students and their team were awarded as prize winners of the campusWELTbewerb in 2017. This competition in Baden-Württemberg is initiated and coordinated by finep and funded by the State Ministry for Science, Research and Arts Baden-Württemberg and the State Ministry for Environment, Climate and the Energy Sector Baden-Württemberg. OneLife is currently focusing on the sectors agriculture, waste management and renewable energies.