The Better Factory project is pleased to announce that it is currently closing the official selection process to choose the 9 teams that will participate in the second round of the project, over the next 16 months.

Before we announce the winning teams, though, we wanted to present some data about the Second Open Call in general. How did this process work? Let’s take a look!

From Expression of Interest, to Open Call

The second expression of interest was open from 25 April 2022, until 25 June 2022. The application phase successfully closed with 185 submissions, with 58 manufacturing SMEs, 72 artists and 55 tech suppliers making up the applications. You can find more data on this part of the process in this blog post.

On 1 September 2022, the Second Open Call opened, with a matchmaking event held on 7 October to match together compatible SMEs, artists and technology providers who were interested to participate, into a team that could apply together. The applying teams were overall given support to prepare their application and submit it before the deadline.

Diving into the application data

The Second Open Call for the Better Factory project officially closed on 15 November 2022, with a total of 56 submitted applications. This second round of applications saw an increase of 62.5% of eligible applications, compared to the First Open Call, which is a great success!

Around 30 of the 56 applications came from the project’s matchmaking process, which put together compatible SMEs, artists and technology providers who were interested to participate, into a team that could apply together.

In terms of geographical location, the applicants came from a total of 23 countries. The top destination for applications this time was Poland, making up 17% of the total applications, and the second highest was the Netherlands, at 11%. The third country was Italy at 11%, followed by Slovenia at 9%, and then Spain at 8%.

In terms of the proposed impact of experiments, the most popular goal was for the ‘Reduction of waste, energy and other production resources’, with 33% of applicants focusing on this topic. This is encouraging, given today’s urgent need for sustainable solutions.

Of the sectors covered, the distribution of application interest was as follows:

  • Furniture and Wood: 12%
  • Food and Agriculture: 13%
  • Construction: 14%
  • Metal and Machinery: 22%
  • Plastic and Rubber: 24%

Final step: The Jury Day

After a review process, 19 teams were selected to go through to pitch on the Jury Day. These teams were judged by an expert panel made up of the Better Factory partners, coming from Finland, The Netherlands, Portugal, Germany, Belgium, and Greece, from the organisations VTT, Hermia Yrityskehitys Oy, In4art, WAAG, Inova+, GESTALT Robotics, GLUON, and European Dynamics.

After this tough process, the jury ultimately chose the best proposals to go forward into the experiments. At this stage, the final details are currently being decided, and we’re preparing for the next round of the 16-month programme.

Soon we will announce the new participating KTE teams, so keep an eye out on our social media accounts, and this blog!