In 2017, the FIA launched the FIA Smart Cities initiative to contribute to the implementation of the UN New Urban Agenda, with the aim of helping cities to define new models for safer, more sustainable and accessible urban mobility. Held in parallel with ABB FIA Formula E Championship rounds, the initiative encourages relevant stakeholders to address major issues raised by urban densification, discuss potential solutions to fill in the gaps in modern mobility systems, and leverage the power of technology to fast-track sustainable development.

For Season 3 of the FIA Smart Cities initiative, the FIA partnered with MassChallenge Switzerland to select and support the growth of the most innovative and impactful urban mobility start-ups through the FIA Smart Cities Global Start-Up Contest. Last year’s edition featured technological know-how in the fields of multi-modal mobility, society-focused services and vehicle innovations, and fostered the development of technologies that advance game-changing mobility solutions in cities. 

The aim of this new edition will be to leverage the huge innovative potential of the global start-up community to address and improve urban transport. For the FIA, this means innovation in the area of connectivity and data in transport, new safety applications, multi-modal mobility, and society-focused mobility services.

“Due to rapid urban population growth, mobility is facing new challenges. The FIA and its Members are determined to play a leading role in driving positive transformation in cities around the world. With the FIA Smart Cities Global Start-Up Contest, we are offering visionary entrepreneurs an outstanding platform to present their innovative ideas to high-level experts, gain prime visibility, and effectively accelerate change towards a safer, more sustainable and inclusive urban mobility,” said Andrew McKellar, FIA Secretary General for Automobile Mobility and Tourism.

“Mobility plays a crucial role in our society: whether it’s business, everyday activities or bringing communities together, it all depends on movement. Plus if you add in CO2 emissions you can see it impacts our quality of life. That is why innovation in this sector is so important, and we are happy that together with our partner, the FIA Smart Cities initiative, we have developed a start-up programme that will identify the most innovative mobility and transport technologies out there,” said Matt Lashmar, Managing Director of MassChallenge Switzerland.


The pitches will take place in three cities around the world during the FIA Smart Cities Forum and E-Prix weekend. Travel and accommodation will be covered for up to USD 1,000 per start-up to facilitate attendance.


The selected start-ups will be invited to take part in the full FIA Smart Cities experience, helping them to grow their network with key mobility stakeholders. They will also gain media exposure via the FIA’s and MassChallenge’s websites and social media channels. Past winners also attended the FIA Mobility Annual Conference, FIA Region I Marketing & Management Conference, and GREENTECH Festival, where they were able to connect with leading experts across the transportation sector. 


The selected start-ups will also have a chance to attend MassChallenge’s start-up accelerator programme in Switzerland. The well-known start-up accelerator programme has already helped hundreds of innovators and entrepreneurs grow their business. In addition, MassChallenge will offer office space and unrivaled access to a network of relevant corporate partners, to help them develop in the Swiss/EU market.


To apply and learn more about the FIA Smart Cities Global Start-up Contest please click here.

About the FIA

The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) is the governing body for world motor sport and the federation of the world’s leading mobility organisations. Founded in 1904, with headquarters in Paris and Geneva, the FIA is a non-profit organisation. It brings together 240 Member Organisations from 144 countries on five continents. Its Member Clubs represent over 80 million road users and their families. The FIA promotes safe, sustainable and accessible mobility for all road users around the world.

Further details can be found at www.fia.com.


About MassChallenge

MassChallenge is a global network of zero-equity startup accelerators. Headquartered in the United States with locations in Boston, Israel, Mexico, Rhode Island, Switzerland, and Texas, MassChallenge is committed to strengthening the global innovation ecosystem by supporting high-potential startups across all industries, from anywhere in the world. To date, more than 2,300 MassChallenge alumni have raised more than $5 billion in funding, generated more than $2.7 billion in revenue, and created more than 136,000 total jobs. Learn more about MassChallenge at masschallenge.org.


The MassChallenge Switzerland Founding Partners are Barry Callebaut, Bühler, GEA, Givaudan, Nestlé, Swiss Economic Forum, Inartis Foundation.

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