Special Projects

K.EY is consolidating its role as an incubator and facilitator of innovative projects by confirming and strengthening the Start-Up and Scale-Up Innovation project.

This exhibition space, both physical and virtual, is entirely reserved for innovative start-ups and young Italian and international companies offering services and/or products related to the energy transition, a platform for dialogue between companies, investors and start-ups, which can promote themselves within an international trade show environment, meet potential partners and launch their own brand.

The initiative is organised by Italian Exhibition Group and promoted in cooperation with the Italian Trade Agency. The main partner is ART-ER (Attrattività Ricerca Territorio), a consortium based in Emilia-Romagna.

Browse photos of the 2022 edition



  • To offer Start-ups substantial national and international visibility, fostering exchange and the sharing of ideas: the perfect environment bringing together tradition and innovation.
  • To create opportunities for attending companies to meet Start-ups that, through their approach, can promote product and/or service innovation.
  • To encourage the identification of the Italian Innovative System as a primary interlocutor in the product development of the renewable energy and sustainable mobility industry at national and international level.




Start-ups and Scale-ups with innovative products/services that meet the following minimum requirements are eligible to apply:

  • Technological lines of development coherent with the topic of the K.EY expo on the full range of renewable energy, energy efficiency, electric mobility and urban sustainability.
  • They have already completed at least one seed round or, alternatively, be active in the market and have a client portfolio available.
  • Have a language website and/or promotional materials in English.





Applications received having the requirements set out in the previous point will be evaluated by an Assessment Committee, assigning a score for each of the following elements (the percentage weight of each criterion is indicated in brackets):

  • innovative content of the product or service (from 1 to 10) - (20%);
  • B2B product or service - (20%);
  • collaborations and partnerships - (20%);
  • product or service already industrialized and ready for market - (20%);
  • coherence with the product sectors covered by the event - (20%).

Even if they meet the requirements listed above, only the first 20 Start-ups and Scale-ups will be selected, that is those with the highest scores based on the assessment conducted following the criteria indicated in this expression of interest. 



The initiative is free for the selected Start-ups and includes all the show services listed below – excluding out-of-pocket expenses (travel, accommodation, transport, etc.) that the participants must cover.
The services provided are:

  • Attending the event both physically and digitally
  • Catalog entry
  • Visibility in K.EY's interactive digital catalog
  • Desk in Start-up area with desk and graphic
  • Access to the K.EY Business Meeting platform to book one-to-one meetings 
  • 1 free external parking permit
  • 2 credits for the staff stand
  • 10 free entry tickets
  • Entry info point to provide information on the area, Start-ups and in general on the area’s organisers
  • Media coverage and national and international promotional services



Applicants who satisfy the indicated requirements may send their expression of interest in participating in the event by 15 February 2023, 2:00 PM.

The expression of interest by innovative startups must include the following information, as well as provide consent to the processing of data contained in the expression of interest:

  • Start-up name
  • City and province of belonging
  • Year of foundation
  • Product or service you wish to present (brief description)
  • Product or service already industrialized and ready for the market, with interest in international development; technological lines of development consistent with one or more of the following areas: SOLAR (photovoltaic, storage and solar), WIND (Technologies and services for the construction and operation of onshore and offshore wind power generation plants), HYDROGEN (Technologies, state of the art projects and evolutions of hydrogen production and storage), ENERGY EFFICIENCY (Technologies and services to optimize consumption and reduce the carbon footprint of industries and buildings), e-MOBILITY (electric and sustainable mobility from charging infrastructure to interconnection services), SUSAINABLE CITY (transformation of cities)
  • Brief explanation for each of the following requirements useful for evaluation (max 500 characters including spaces for each requirement)

>> fnd out more about K.EY thematic and product pillars



Your expression of interest must be sent by and no later than Wednesday February 15, 2023 at 2 PM in accordance with the procedures set out above.

Italian Exhibition Group, having completed the formal checks on the applications and acquired the qualitative assessments of the evaluation committee, will proceed to select -in concert with ART-ER- the startups that will have free access to the area.

Following the performance of the selection procedure, all subjects who have submitted an application will receive, by February 24, 2023 a communication - to the e-mail address indicated when submitting the expression of interest - about whether or not they have been selected for the initiative in question. 

The selected subjects, within 2 working days from the receipt of the aforementioned e-mail, will have to communicate to Italian Exhibition Group their definitive adhesion or their renunciation.

In case of definitive acceptance, they will have to send the application form and form with the start-up's disclosure info.