The Ports 4,0 equity fund is the corporate open innovation model adopted by the Spanish State Port Authorities to attract, support and facilitate the application of talent and entrepreneurship to the Spanish public and private ports sector, within the context of 4th industrial revolution.

The main target of the Fund is to actively promote and incorporate disruptive or incremental innovation as a competitiveness, efficiency, sustainability, security and protection element, in the Spanish public and private logistics-ports sector, to facilitate its transition towards economy 4.0.

Ports 4,0 will stimulate the creation or consolidation of a fabric of emergent companies (Startups), spin-offs or new business lines, within the technological scope, in existing companies developing innovative market-driven products, services or processes for the ports logistics sector.
Ports 4.0 key points
  • The Ports 4.0 Fund will award up to €20 million in its first call for proposals. For the second call, the budget has been increased by 50% for each program.

  • Its aim is promoting a permanent operation and the consolidation of a Tradetech ecosystem fostering the attraction of talent and innovation to the commerce, logistics and transportsector.

  • It makes a corporate incubator/accelerator managed by UTE KPMG- Innsomnia available to innovative ecosystems.

  • The Fund secures funding for the incubation/acceleration of ideas, or Startups, in their initial or emergent stage, including the intra-entrepreneurship in the scope of the ports system.

  • Secures funding for Startups, spin-offs or new business lines of SMEs or consolidated companies, both in its development stage as in its pre-commercialization, growth orexpansion stage.

  • The aid will be in the form of grants (not loans, or equity interest, etc.) that will be awarded through a public call, on a competitive basis, following Law No 38/2003 (General Subsidies Act).

  • The Spanish Port Authority is managing the Fund on behalf of the Spanish port community.

Who is it intended for?
The Spanish Ports Tradetech Fund, Ports 4,0, is intended for all those entrepreneurs and both national and international companies, who have innovative ideas or projects capable of improving the efficiency, competitiveness and sustainability of the ports logistics sector and, in general, of trade. They must have sufficient development and growth capacity in the market through business projects, including the intra-entrepreneurship in the labour environment of the Port Authorities and State Ports Authority.

The Fund is aimed at funding any stage of the innovation process (devising, validation, acceleration, prototyping and growth). It is not solely associated to new clearly disruptive technologies, but also to the development of new more efficient processes and business models based on the verticals of economy 4,0 (Big Data, IoT, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual and Augmented Reality, Machine Learning, Additive Manufacturing (3D Printing), Robotics, Automation, Analytics, etc.).
Which ideas are likely to be selected?

The ideas or projects likely to be chosen must be aimed at obtaining a product, equipment, service or innovative process and fulfil the following requirements:

  • Developing a new product, service or process, or either improve an already existing technology with an innovative component plus also developing its application to the ports logistics sector.

  • Fostering the obtention of measurable leading-edge solutions in one or several of the following ports logistics operations areas:

    • Logistics efficiency in the field of infrastructures, operations or service provision
    • Environmental sustainability and energy
    • Security and protection
  • Products that contribute to economy 4.0 and have an innovative, tangible, clearly demonstrable and delimited component, at least as regards to its scope, contents and costs, and which do not exist yet, both at national and international level.

  • Susceptible to be made available, tested and implemented or deployed in one or more facilities or agents of the Spanish ports-logistics community.

  • Other innovative processes or products that are having an impact on the port or logistics secto

  1. Launch date and official announcement of Ports 4.0 Fund 2nd call for IDEAS and COMMERCIAL PROJECTS programs (20/10/2021)

  2. Preparation of applications by candidates (including specialised support from the corporate incubator/accelerator)

  3. Deadline for sending applications for IDEAS program (21/12/2021) and for COMMERCIAL PROJECTS program (21/01/2022)

  4. Evaluation process (after the end of the period for remedying the applications submitted)

  5. Awarding (after the end of the evaluation process)

  6. Development of projects and pilots (after the award of the grants)

  7. Launch date and official announcement of Ports 4.0 Fund 2nd call for PRE-COMMERCIAL PROJECTS programs (to be announced)

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