What, why, who & when


The New Energy Challenge 2019 calls for European and Israeli start-ups and scale-ups to propose game-changing solutions that will change the energy system of the future.

This year’s challenge will consist of two distinct tracks: a track for start-ups (seed phase) and a track for scale-ups:

  • Track One offers start-ups an intensive validation lab – designed by YES!Delft – in which the finalist will get the opportunity to validate and further optimize their business proposals with coaches, experts and relevant stakeholders. The winner will receive at least €100,000 towards a proof of concept within the Shell GameChanger programme.
  • Track Two of the New Energy Challenge offers scale-ups a challenge around the future retail stations, designed by Rockstart. The goal of this track will be to design a retail pilot project proposal, which will be shaped and strengthened with the support of expert mentors from the Rockstart and Shell network. The winner will further develop their pilot together with Shell’s Retail business, ultimately launching it at a Shell retail site.

Finalists in both tracks will be invited to the Netherlands to join the Finals Week, where each finalist will receive intensive coaching tailored to the respective field and maturity level of their company. This intense week will build up to Finals Day, during which the finalists will pitch for a jury of experts, who will select the winners of the New Energy Challenge 2019.

Why: Over the coming decades, the world will need much more energy to meet the growing demand required to ensure quality of life for people across the world. But this is only one part of the story. We need to produce all that energy while emitting much less CO2. This is the challenge we must meet as a society.

Collaboration between start-ups, (energy) companies and (local) government can fast-track the development and introduction of cleaner fuels for transport, bolster the generation of cleaner power and integrate digital technologies that can help us reduce our carbon footprints. It will help pave the way to more economically, environmentally and socially acceptable energy options, along with more efficient delivery systems.

Who: The New Energy Challenge is open to young entrepreneurs in Europe and Israel who are developing advanced technologies and disruptive solutions that could be vital to meeting future energy needs. The focus is on start-ups and scale-ups that offer innovative, low-carbon energy solutions related to the future of mobility, energy management, energy storage, hydrogen and the retail station of the future.

This year’s edition of the New Energy Challenge has two distinct tracks for companies that could contribute to a lower-carbon energy system – and have a strong scalable potential:

  • Track One is open to early stage start-ups.
  • Track Two is open to scale-ups.

When: The deadline for application was 24 May 2019 and submissions are now closed. Finalists will be invited to join the Finals Week in October in the Netherlands. At the Finals Day event, finalists will make their final pitch before a jury of experts who will select the winners of the New Energy Challenge 2019.