StartUpping: Europeans do it too
di Ottavia Spaggiari
Some European start-ups to watch in 2012
You don’t have to be a 20-year old computer geek studying at an Ivy League University to be an innovator, but you need to be a visionary. Here’s a list of start-ups made in Europe that certainly don’t lack vision.
The vegetarian butcher
Social innovation is not just about phone apps and futuristic softwares, it’s also about being able to observe and interpret the new sustainable trends in a world that is changing faster than ever. This is why Vegetarian Butcher, Europe’s first vegetarian butcher’s shop which opened in The Hague last October is to be watched as one of the most promising start-ups in Europe. De Vegetarische Slager - the Vegetarian Butcher – was founded by eighth-generation lupin farmer Jaap Korteweg,who hope to offer a sustainable alternative to meat, while reducing the environmental impact of rampant soy farming in South America. No country was more suitable than the Netherlands for this challenge. In the Holland, 87% of the citizens have already chosen meatless daily diets.
A sort of Google Maps for wheelchairs, this German website has already mapped 73 thousand wheelchair-accessible locations all over the world. Founded less than two years ago by Raul Krauthausen, WheelMap could make the lives of the 185 million people in wheelchairs much easier. Based on a wikipedia model, over two thousand contributors have rated the accessibility of bars, cafes, government offices and train stations.
A startup that brings old buildings back to life in a sustainable way. This is the idea behind Impossible Living, which started like a blog and it has now become a website based on a crowd sourcing model. Thanks to the contribution of many followers, Impossible Living has created its own database of abandoned buildings all over the world and aims at developing sustainable projects in order to rescue them.
People Planet Period
Sometimes Start-ups break taboos and People.Planet.Period certainly does. Founded last in in Vienna, this young start-up address the topic of menstruation in a positive way. They offer sustainable alternatives to conventional pads and tampons and in 2012 thery’re launching range of organic tampons and organic and fair trade pants.