Cleantech.org Launches GS Beyond Energy Challenge Worth $100,000 for Energy Startups

By Thomas Price Monday, May 3, 2021

Lightbulbs on colorful sticky notes.

With more focus than ever before placed on finding sustainable, clean energy solutions, the startup world is continually bringing in new ideas and innovative technologies. Clean energy and environmental tech company Cleantech.org and GS Group are working to help fund and incentivize this innovation through the new GS Beyond Energy Challenge. This new challenge is open to all energy and tech startup companies and will provide financial awards along with possible consideration for larger projects.

The GS Beyond Energy Challenge Details

The GS Beyond Energy Challenge is a financial incentive presented to startup companies that are within the energy and tech business sector. The challenge works by leveraging South Korean conglomerate GS Group’s innovation sector, GS Beyond, along with several sponsors such as GS Futures (the US venture portion of GS Group’s business, Energy Transition Ventures, and Cleantech.org. The startup that wins the GS Beyond Challenge will be awarded $100,000. Outside of corporate sponsors, the challenge is also supported by top business incubators and research centers such as the Austin Technology Incubator and the largest climatetech startup incubator in North America, Greentown Labs.

The GS Beyond Challenge will be focusing on startup companies within three distinct portions of the energy business. The first focus is the digitization of energy, with solutions being tailored to efficiency and how technology works with energy distribution. The second area of business is emobility in cities or any startup that focuses on transition transportation in cities geared toward electric alternatives. Finally, the GS Beyond Challenge is looking for startup companies that have innovated in energy itself with a specific focus on new fuel types.

For a company to qualify for the competition, it must have a minimum viable product or a working prototype. The company can still be in seed funding or even already have a launched product as the challenge has no guidelines on business development.

When commenting on the challenge, CEO of Greentown Labs, Dr. Emily Reichert, said, “In order to combat the climate crisis we need to rapidly scale climatetech solutions across the greatest GHG emitting sectors and accelerate the energy transition. We're proud to see the GS Beyond Energy Challenge focusing on these areas. We're thrilled to support the program as an Incubation Partner and can't wait to meet and support the entrepreneurs who participate!"

Details on the Selection Process

The winner will be chosen from a pool of 21 finalists based on which startup has the most innovative product and business model. The eventual winner will be awarded by a panel of judges in the venture capital and climate technology industry. While no other startup will receive a financial reward, any company within the top five will receive other recognition and benefits. In fact, those within the top three spots will be in consideration for a pilot project with GS Group. All other startup companies in the top five will be able to pitch their innovative products to energy industry leaders and investors.

When introducing the challenge, chairman of Cleantech.org Neal Dikeman said, “We are excited to present the GS Beyond Energy Innovation Challenge and continue connecting great companies with influential investors. When you flatten the commercialization cycle in energy and put engineers and executives from passionate fast-moving startups and multinational energy companies in the same room, world-changing things tend to happen.”

About the Author


Headshot for author Thomas Price

Tom Price is a writer focusing on Entertainment and Sports Features. He has a degree from NYU in English with a minor in Creative Writing. He has been previously published for Washington Square News, Dignitas, CBR, and Numbers on the Boards.

Related Articles