Sustainable startups vie for €500,000 in seventh Postcode Lottery Green Challenge


AMSTERDAM, 17 April 2013 – Sir Richard Branson is chairing the jury of this year’s Postcode Lottery Green Challenge. The seventh edition of the annual competition for green business plans opens today to sustainable startups all over the world. The winner will receive €500,000 to carry out his or her plan. An additional €200,000 will go to one or two runners-up. Entrants can submit their business plans at through 17 July. The jury will announce the winner on 16 September at the final in Amsterdam.

Branson, a dyed-in-the-wool green entrepreneur, has been involved in the competition since the beginning. After serving on the jury in 2007, he returns this year as chair. “The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge calls on entrepreneurs to find solutions to climate change, one of the most urgent issues we face today,” Branson said. "I encourage everybody around the world with a great green idea to enter this prestigious contest. One smart, creative idea can make a huge difference."

To be eligible for the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge, a product or service must reduce greenhouse gas emissions and be capable of being brought to market within two years. Each entrant sends in a detailed business plan, and an expert preliminary jury evaluates its viability. After the deadline, the preliminary jury will choose between five and seven finalists. On Monday 16 September, the finalists will present their ideas in Amsterdam before an international jury of experts led by Branson. The competition is an effort by the Dutch Postcode Lottery to bring to the mass market brilliant, innovative green products and services that might otherwise never see the light of day, thereby helping to fight climate change.

Past winners' successes

Over the past six years, the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge has helped to advance several valuable, innovative green ideas. The American Molly Morse won last year's grand prize for Mango Materials, a company that uses bacteria to turn methane into biodegradable plastic. The Dutchman Daan Weddepohl won second prize for Peerby, an online platform people can use to borrow goods from neighbours.