December 14th 2015

Innovative business ideas at MCI Creativity Award 2015

The Entrepreneurial School® awards prizes to most creative student business ideas

Also in 2015, the Management Center Innsbruck organized the MCI Creativity Award to recognize the most creative business ideas of their students in cooperation with the Center for Academic Spin-offs Tyrol (CAST).

The students of the Entrepreneurial School® have impressively demonstrated their entrepreneurial spirit with altogether 39 team as well as individual submissions. The competition targets MCI students of all study programs who have exceptional business or product ideas and aim to assume their economic and social responsibility through entrepreneurship. The received submissions represent the broad range of study programs offered at MCI. They come from economic and technical fields as well as the areas of society and social affairs. A jury of experts determined the five award winners via a demanding selection procedure, which consisted of multiple stages.

Owing to the support of our partners CAST, the Federation of Austrian Industry, and the daily paper Die Presse, attractive prizes with a total value of more than 4.000 Euros could be awarded to the most innovative ideas.

Florian Becke, Managing Director of CAST: “The MCI Creativity Award provides students with the opportunity to deal with crucial questions relating to the market potential of their ideas. A jury of experts additionally offers valuable feedback. The participation in the Creativity Award has more and more often become the first step towards founding a business. We are happy to be able to accompany these motivated young people.”

Bernd Ebersberger, Head of the R & D Department at MCI: “With the MCI Creativity Award, MCI and its partners give new impetus to entrepreneurial thinking and actively help shape the landscape of start-ups in Tyrol. The event shows the students of all MCI study programs that innovative business formation constitutes an interesting career option.”

Andreas Altman, Rector of MCI: “As Entrepreneurial School® we promote and demand young people with entrepreneurial thinking. I am delighted about the creative submissions we have received and should like to thank the jury and our partners for their support and congratulate the prize winners. It is truly incredible what hardworking people and creative minds are capable of.”

The award winners and their ideas:

1st place: Simon Zigala (Industrial Engineering & Management)

BLIZZARD – The development of an innovative technical method for clearing truck tops from snow and ice
The snow and ice falling from truck tops causes fatal accidents every year. The project now makes this danger a thing of the past.

2nd place: Johanna Haas, Klemens Gratzel (Business & Management)

The new comfort of shopping
The innovative tool enhances service level and customer satisfaction. The customer enjoys a new and unique shopping experience.

3rd place: Martin Waler (Environmental, Process & Energy Engineering)

Recovery of energy from green waste including the production of biochar
The method combines material and thermal recycling of green waste and thus constitutes an economic relief to heating plants and district heating grids. Biochar is supplied as a secondary product.

4th place: Philipp Halder, David Bock, Rudolf Haas, Christoph Nothegger (Management, Communication & IT)

Smile Together. Local – Refugee - Friendship
Smile Together (, is an online platform which brings refugees and locals together. Motivated programers who are prepared to assist the implementation of our project are welcome.

5th place: Christoph Fink, Philip Weihrauch (Business & Management)

NAKED Optics
The project aims to develop ecofriendly winter sports equipment using innovative resources according to the principles of circular economy.

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