Bank Austria Ideas and Business Plan Competition "next generation vol. 13":
More than 600 student teams impress with sustainably innovative business ideas

  • Largest ideas and business plan competition for students from Austria, South Tyrol, Bulgaria and Albania, main topic in school year 2018/2019 was "Sustainability".
  • Students were called upon to develop innovative business ideas or to present them in the form of a business plan. 
  • The final award ceremony for the national winners took place at UniCredit Bank Austria in Innsbruck, and a "Festival of Ideas" for Eastern Austria took place at the UniCredit Center am Kaiserwasser.

The Bank Austria "next generation" business plan competition was held for the thirteenth time this year and is now a fixed part in the schedule of vocational schools with higher educational entrance qualification. In addition to raising awareness of the topic of starting a business, the competition is primarily intended to promote entrepreneurial thinking and action as well as the commitment of schoolchildren. In the Bank Austria Business Plan "Next Generation" competition, they can demonstrate their creativity and entrepreneurial skills. The main theme this year was "sustainability".

The final award ceremony for all national winners took place in the ceremonial hall of UniCredit Bank Austria in Innsbruck. UniCredit Bank Austria also hosted the "Festival of Ideas" for Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland at the UniCredit Center am Kaiserwasser. "Many great business ideas have begun just as many student teams have presented them in this great competition," said Martin Bachl, Head of Small Business Banking at UniCredit Bank Austria, during the welcoming address. "As the leading Austrian bank in the corporate banking sector, we support and finance these new entrepreneurial ideas so that they make it into real life."

More than 600 teams took part in the competition this school year. The main theme of this year's conference, "Sustainability", was addressed by a number of business ideas and concepts with different and highly innovative approaches.

The national federal winners
In the category "Real Markt Challenge" the group "faRADmarz" of BHAK Perg won with their idea of a bicycle dynamo charger for charging the smartphones while cycling, ahead of "Fortunita" of BHAK Lienz (app for planning music lessons in a music school) and "Penscan" of the Bezauer Wirtschaftsschulen, with a solution to immediately digitize handwritten recordings and subsequently make them available to users.

In the "Ideas Competition" category, the "BioEyes" team from VBS Schönborngasse (Vienna) was successful with a concept for biodegradable contact lenses ahead of "Haarbracadabra" from BHAK Voitsberg (Styria) with the idea of a hairdresser's mirror that has an integrated camera and immediately makes the latest hairstyle trends visible. The podium was completed by the BHAK Imst (Tyrol) "Safe to Home" team with an "all-in-one emergency lap" with numerous additional functions.

For the prize winners from Albania and Bulgaria a special award ceremony took place in the respective country.

The prizewinners in Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland
The party operator "Nasty" offers young people from 16+ an opportunity to visit the best events in Vienna. The main prize in the "Real Market Challenge" category was awarded for this. "Weinjodler", a mixed drink of wine and herbal lemonade, connects West and East in Austria and "Mr. Healthy" was awarded to a vegan food truck.

In Category 2, "Ideas Competition", in addition to biodegradable contact lenses, wooden food boxes with edible cutlery and ideas for turning old furniture into new ones, solutions were also presented which, for example, find undiscovered football talents or have shishas delivered to the home.

In addition to the winners in the federal states, special prizes such as the "Youth Social Impact Award" were also awarded. Here with "PerroPata - Dating on 4 paws" a project was distinguished, which mediates a sponsorship for dogs by means of App to young people, who want to have a dog, whose parents do not permit it however. The "Fairtrade" special prize went to the idea of an inexpensive coffee and tea house with an associated shop offering alternative products. The best "sustainable business idea" was a supermarket that sells food that does not meet the quality standards of current supermarkets with employees with disabilities. "Quick Help" devised an app which, disguised as a game, can make an emergency call to the police for victims of domestic violence. For this there was the "Social Entrepreneurship Award". Hannah Konzett from Vorarlberg was able to win the "writing competition" organized by the association "Schreiben für die Schule" with her text "Slaves in our digital world?

Partners and sponsors are the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research together with UniCredit Bank Austria, Vienna Business Agency, the Lower Austria Business Start-Up Agency, Young Enterprises, the Julius Raab Foundation, JMC, Fairtrade Austria, Oiko Credit, Jugend Innovativ, entrepreneurs of the Junge Industrie Niederösterreich & Wien network, aws as well as the eesi Impulse Centre and the association ifte.at.

UniCredit Bank Austria also supports the business plan competition by coaching corporate client advisors, who are available to students in all provinces. In addition, the winners will be invited by UniCredit Bank Austria to complete an internship at the bank. 

"Every year, students apply with very innovative ideas. The aim is to understand economic relationships, develop business ideas and present them in the form of a business plan. Many of the teams use their concept to implement the idea", explain the organisers Martin Wegscheider , eesi-Landeskoordinator Tirol and Johannes Lindner, eesi-Bundeskoordinator and ifte.at. 

"I am proud that UniCredit Bank Austria has supported this competition since its inception. For me it is always impressive to see how the event has developed and with what professionalism young people approach the topic. The business ideas presented in particular show that the next generation of entrepreneurs is already at the start here," says Bachl.

Enquiries:    UniCredit Bank Austria Press Office
                     Volker Moser, Phone.: +43 (0) 5 05 05-52854;
                     Email: volker.moser@unicreditgroup.at

Further printable photos are available for download on our website www.bankaustria.at Presse > Pressefotos. The printing of the photo is free of charge. Copyright: UniCredit Bank Austria.