Now in its fifth year, this renowned competition aims to spotlight and support pioneering startups dedicated to tackling critical urban resilience issues worldwide.
This year’s event witnessed an unprecedented 650 entries from entrepreneurs hailing from 80 different countries, all presenting innovative solutions geared towards advancing equity, resilience, and sustainability within urban environments.
In addition to the primary track, the 2023 competition introduced two auxiliary tracks: the “property tech” category, aimed at finding sustainable solutions for challenges within the commercial property sector, and the “agtech” track, designed to identify groundbreaking solutions to support small- and mid-sized farmers in America.
The following ten finalists from the main track will proceed to the QBE AcceliCITY Boot Camp, where they will have the opportunity to make their final pitches before a panel of esteemed judges representing organizations such as the World Economic Forum, the Earthshot Prize, and Code for America. The ultimate prize awaiting the victor is an impressive $100,000 in pilot project funding.
- Aqua Solar Solutions: Cutting-edge technology to generate affordable green electricity as well as fresh water.
- Flash: An AI/Deep Learning platform that is changing the way we forecast weather by forecasting lightning hazards for the continental U.S.
- GoodMaps: Turn-by-turn navigation that enables anyone to find their way within the built environment regardless of their routing preferences.
- itselectric: An urban curbside EV charging network that connects to existing buildings and shares revenue with the host property.
- SmartAcqua Solutions: Water Losses are growing globally despite investments; existing solutions are not working, and SmartAcqua AI/ML solution can fix it.
- Stratasite: A cloud-based active threat planning portal that allows emergency responders to create and share coordinated response plans.
- Sustainaccount: Provides real estate stakeholders with actionable climate intelligence to foster the resilience of buildings.
- Syrinx: Leaders in nature-based solutions, sustainable technologies and positive impact models.
- UrbanSky: Provides high-resolution, ultra-low-cost, city-wide aerial imagery using zero-emission balloons.
- WEO: Creates accessible environmental analytics by harnessing the power space data and AI.
In the proptech track, four finalists – Climasens, Flash, Intelligent AI, and UrbanSky – pitched to a judging panel made up of QBE’s property leaders in North America and International, as well as QBE Ventures. Intelligent AI, a global location intelligence solution that helps identify, measure, predict and mitigate property risks in real time, was selected as the winner, receiving $25,000 and business support from QBE. Additionally, the judges made the decision to extend QBE’s business support to all participating finalists in recognition of the high quality of the solutions they presented.
“Cities experience unique challenges stemming from and complicated by climate change, population density, cyber risk, and resource scarcity. They are looking for practical solutions that can be implemented to make a difference in their local communities,” said Mike Lake, President and CEO of Leading Cities. “AcceliCITY focuses on solutions for real problems and provides support to impact-driven entrepreneurs who are seeking to operationalize their great ideas.”
“As a company that helps people and businesses develop resilience and mitigate risk, QBE is proud to play a role in helping our cities and local governments build resiliency and prepare for a range of environmental and economic risks,” said Chris Castaldo, Chief Financial Officer at QBE, who also serves as Executive Sponsor of the AcceliCITY Challenge. “Our partnership with Leading Cities, now in its fifth year, puts action behind our values and purpose to enable a more resilient future for our communities, customers, and employees.”