Exploring radical opportunities
in the Circular Economy

Apply by October 9, 2018

Stora Enso Accelerator Programme

Are you a startup looking for an opportunity to adapt your product or technology into a new sector?

The world’s leading renewable materials company wants to work with you! Stora Enso offers a unique possibility for disruptive startups to explore joint opportunities in the circular economy—opportunities that may even lead to new customer segments.

Apply for the programme, run together with Vertical and Aalto ENT.

Do you have an idea or a technology that could have a radical impact on circular economy?

Stora Enso is looking for startups, radical innovators, and disruptive entrepreneurs who want to build a profitable and scalable company. It is not necessary for your startup to be in the circular economy space already—if your solutions could be adapted for use in this space, then this is a fantastic opportunity for you.

We encourage startups from any sector to apply. You may be particularly interested if your startup has current offerings in renewable energy, renewable raw materials, IoT, big data, analytics, machine learning, AI, VR, robotics, automation, supply chain technologies, or hardware systems. As long as you believe there is a good chance your technology/solutions could be applied to the circular economy, then we encourage you to apply! Not yet sure if this program is a fit for you?

Here are some illustrative questions to help you evaluate if this program is for you:

  • Could your solutions in machine learning or data intelligence be used to maximize the recovery and reuse of raw materials in a manufacturing supply chain?
  • Do you have IoT solutions that could be used to track and capture data on reusable material logistics and management?
  • Can your data analytics be applied to minimize raw material waste in manufacturing processes?
  • Could we explore if your robotics solutions can be used for the sorting and separation of mixed raw materials when recycling?
  • Can your startup create new types of materials from waste or recycled materials?
  • Can your startup create new types of fuels (or energy producing systems) from re-used/recyclable materials?

The above are simply illustrations, but the opportunities to be explored are fully up to you. They do not need to fit in Stora Enso’s current portfolio—they just need to fit within the Circular Economy umbrella. Please note we are only interested solutions applicable to renewable, recyclable, non-fossil based materials. With the support of the world’s leader in renewables, this program is an excellent opportunity for you to explore unchartered areas in the circular economy. The top 6 teams will be selected to work with Stora Enso in a unique 3-months accelerator programme.

Key Dates

  • 4.9.2018 - Application Opens
  • 9.10.2018 - Application Closes
  • 14.-15.11.2018 - Final Selection Days in Helsinki, Finland
  • 28.1.2019 - Programme Kick-off
  • 11.4.2019 - Programme Ends

Stora Enso as a Transformation Partner

Stora Enso
With renewable materials at our foundation, Stora Enso plays an important role in the bioeconomy, where fibre-based products replace fossil-based materials to battle climate change. We welcome collaboration with innovative, fast-moving startups to advance capabilities and technologies, embrace new market opportunities and speed up our business transformation. The startups we select to collaborate with could be our partners or suppliers of tomorrow, together building a renewable future.

Learn more at Stora Enso's website

Explore Opportunities with Stora Enso

Are you a startup looking for an opportunity to adapt your product or technology into a new sector? Stora Enso offers a unique possibility for disruptive startups to learn firsthand from an industry leader, which may even lead to a new product-market fit. Stora Enso Accelerator Programme also offers an unprecedented access to Stora Enso talents and a Group Leadership Team (GLT) Coach, working side-by-side for innovative solutions in the below areas connected to Renewable and/or non-fossil based Recyclable raw materials.

Circular Solutions

Apply your technology to develop creative solutions on raw materials related to their use, reuse, repurpose, recycling or waste for industrial markets

Raw Material Management

Explore new ways to manage raw materials associated with production / manufacturing processes


Reform the collection, handling and management of packaging materials

Separation & Sorting

Investigate opportunities in the separation and sorting of production materials


Explore opportunities in the reuse of energy fuels, biofuels and waste processes

"Everything that’s made with fossil-based materials today can be made from a tree tomorrow"

Stora Enso Accelerator Programme

The Stora Enso Accelerator programme brings opportunity for growth as well as unprecedented access to Stora Enso talents and leadership, working side-by-side for innovative solutions.

  • Dedicated resources from Stora Enso – Coach from leadership and three Stora Enso Talents for each selected startup, providing essential knowledge and access throughout the programme
  • Potential corporate client looking for a long-term commercial partnership
  • Service and business design support
  • Globally renowned 3-month business co-creation programme
  • Prominent network of +200 world-class mentors and industry experts
  • Immersion in one of the most vibrant startup communities in the world (Maria 01 in Helsinki)
  • Neither equity nor fee taken for the programme

The 2017 Stora Enso Accelerator programme resulted in continuing cooperation with several startups such as a partnership with Sulapac.


This list of questions will be updated throughout the whole application period.

When and How to Apply?

The application period is currently open. You can fill the form here by 9.10.2018 and we will get back to you my the end of October with information whether you made it to top 20 startups invited for the final Selection Days.

Who can Apply?

Any startups bringing disruptive innovations in supply chain technologies, IoT, big data, analytics, machine learning, AI, VR, robotics, automation, or hardware systems that can provide solutions that could transform Stora Enso business, can apply for the programme.

Does my product or technology have to fit Stora Enso’s current offering or fit with the theme of Circular Economy?

No, it doesn’t have to. The co-creation process is designed in a such a way that you will be able to explore the opportunity of adapting your product or technology to the challenges that Stora Enso has outlined in Circular Economy.

Where and when will the Selection Days take place?

The 20 most promising startups will be invited for the Selection Days taking place in Helsinki, Finland on 14th and 15th of November. For those days in particular, the accommodation and flights will be paid by Stora Enso. Startups are recommended to join the voluntary Selection Day Training, which is organized on the 13th of November, although it is not covered by Stora Enso.

Where and when will the programme take place?

The programme will take place in Helsinki, Finland between January 28th and April 11th 2019. We expect a minimum of one to two people from your team to be available to work with your new team.

This is a 3-month programme, but is the on-site requirement also 3 months?

On-site presence is mandatory only for approximately 15 days in total during the programme. Exact days will be informed to startups during the selection period.

Can startups outside of Finland apply?

Absolutely. We and our clients have worked with startups on co-creation projects from all over the world.

How many startups will you select?

At the end of the selection process we will select six startups in total to participate in the programme.

Aalto ENT understands the challenges of entrepreneurship and offers agile and practical solutions to develop established companies' business operations and create new business. Our offering is targeted both to the start of the entrepreneurial journey and to the later stages when ideas and businesses develop. Aalto ENT develops educational programs to help entrepreneurs lead their teams and companies better and create successful commercial products and services for global customers.

Learn more at Aalto ENT's website.

We believe there’s more to gain by working together, rather than doing it alone and starting from scratch. We offer uplifting solutions to business problems by carefully selecting the best Startup talent and then tuning their offering to match the business needs. We’re not a Startup accelerator. Nor are we a traditional business consultancy. We look at improvement via addition and co-creation. That’s why we’ve created a new term for what we are, the world’s first business augmentor.

Additional questions? Ask us

Fabian Sepulveda

Program Director, Vertical

Jan Bubienczyk

Project Lead, Vertical

Kerttu Tanhuanpää

Project Lead, Aalto ENT