From all around the world, entrepreneurs are submitting their green business plans. While that’s great, we always feel that we can do better. For example, we know that there are still a lot of entrepreneurs who’ve never heard of us. As such, this year we’re scouting the world for promising start-ups. Meet our start-up scout, Linda Vermaat, a woman with a mission!

Linda Vermaat

I first started working with start-ups when I ran a small agency to help large corporations think more like a start-up. This was a really great experience that triggered me to make a documentary about different start-up cultures around the world and the way they shape the future, a project that’s on the back burner for now because of my activities for this amazing competition.

Visiting events and summits
As a scout, I’m on a worldwide search for entrepreneurs who can say yes without hesitation to the question: ‘Do you combat climate change?’ Armed with a suitcase full of flyers, I visit events and summits on sustainability and entrepreneurship to get the word out that we might be looking for you. Meeting people at a summit is a bit like swiping right on Tinder all the time. I try to talk to as many people as possible: entrepreneurs, investors, accelerator programmes, climate centres, etc. Luckily, all of them were keen to learn more about our global challenge on CO2 reduction, which makes it very easy to talk to all these different people.

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Diversify the competition
Since the start in 2007, we have seen amazing, innovative, sustainable businesses win the competition. However, most of them were start-ups form the same regions. My main mission is to diversify the competition; to get businesses to apply from Latin-America, Africa and Asia. So far, this quest has led me to Kenia, Germany and Lausanne, and I’ve made an appearance in two online seminars.

Curious? Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., because there will be much more to come. For example, why not enrol in our online meetup with Intellecap on 10 May? More information will be posted soon on this website and our social media channels: Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Alternatively, you can always send Linda an e-mail.