Isabella Palmgren of the Swedish green start-up Mimbly has won the 2021 Postcode Lotteries Green Challenge. The jurors awarded the grand prize of €500,000 for its Mimbox, a technology that recycles washing machine water, saves energy and filters out microplastics from waste streams.
Five finalists pitched products and services designed to make the world more sustainable to an international jury at the Green Challenge final.
“Starting a hardware start-up is extremely capital-intensive,” winner Palmgren said. “With 1 per cent of venture capital funding going to companies with female founders, it has been a challenging journey. This prize money will help us to reach commercialisation with our first product and also take us closer to a consumer solution. Saving microplastics and water shouldn’t be a choice; it should automatically be in every appliance that we buy.”
'A brilliant solution'
Sigrid van Aken, chair of the jury and CEO of Novamedia/Postcode Lotteries, said, “Isabella is a wonderful winner. Mimbly’s Mimbox is a brilliant solution that can help the world to wash more sustainably. With the international Green Challenge competition, we’ve been putting green start-ups in the spotlight for 15 years. These young entrepreneurs play an important role in facilitating the transition to a sustainable way of living. That’s exactly what our five Postcode Lotteries in the Netherlands, Sweden, Great Britain, Germany and Norway, together with their 13 million players, work toward every day.”
The jury awarded the runner-up prize of €200,000 to Hanson Cheng of Great Britain. His start-up, the Tyre Collective, is developing a device that can be retrofitted at the wheels of vehicles to prevent tyre wear from entering the ecosystem. The other three finalists, Qazi Sohail Ahmad of ChargeBnB (Norway), Jardo Stammeshaus of Liion Power (the Netherlands) and Oliver Baum of Warmduscher (Germany), received €100,000 euros each.
The Postcode Lotteries Green Challenge
To further the ideal of a greener world, the Postcode Lotteries organised their international sustainability competition for the 15th time this year. The Green Challenge is designed to help start-ups develop and market products and services that contribute to a more sustainable world. In addition to the total prize money of €1 million, the five finalists will receive six months of coaching and assistance to take their businesses to the next level.
About the Postcode Lotteries
The Dutch Postcode Lottery was founded in 1989 to raise money for charities working to make the world a greener, fairer place. Today it has four sister lotteries: the Svenska Postkodlotteriet in Sweden, the People’s Postcode Lottery in Great Britain, the Deutsche Postcode Lotterie in Germany, and the Norsk Postkodelotteri in Norway.
So far, thanks to their millions of players, the Lotteries have donated more than €11 billion to organisations around the world, including UNICEF, WWF, Amnesty International and Doctors Without Borders. They are proud to host the Postcode Lotteries Green Challenge every year.
More about the Green Challenge.