Cleantech startups and the COVID−19 challenge major risk or activity booster ?

Christina Marchand

In this article, we put the results of our spring COVID-19 survey into perspective and expand the findings with more expert and startup interviews.

The COVID−19 crisis hit the cleantech startups suddenly and strongly this spring, like most industry sectors. To understand its consequences the Swiss Energy and Environment Innovation Monitor ran a survey among startups in the cleantech and sustainability fields in May 2020. 28% of the startups in the cleantech field experienced either a positive effect or no effect of the COVID−19 crisis. The remaining 72% were negatively affected. Fortunately, thanks to their agility and capacity to react, startups were able to manage relatively well through the first half of 2020 with the COVID− 19 crisis. The “ startup culture ” is a strength to face such situations where uncertainty becomes the rule. This article and the interviews that follow show in detail, with examples, how startups reacted in Spring 2020 to the uncertainty.

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