The EDP headquarters hosted today the big final of the EDP University Challenge - an EDP Group program created to support and foster the entrepreneurial spirit of college students. This is an initiative that involves EDP Portugal, EDP Brasil and EDP Renováveis. This year the EDP Group held a global final bringing together the three finalist teams of each competition.
Each company challenged higher education students to develop an engineering, management or marketing project revolving a different future-focused topic. In Portugal, applicants had to submit an 'EDP Future Store' project using various technologies such as augmented reality; in Brazil, students focused on the 'Home of the Future'; while EDP Renováveis challenged higher education teams to submit projects on the future of renewable energies.
The three competitions received 272 entries, but only nine teams reached the final, where they had the opportunity to pitch their ideas before a jury. These nine teams went through several selection stages before reaching the final, the last of which was a semi-final held in each of the three locations. On the eve of the final, all teams attended a pitch bootcamp held by Spark Agency, where they had the chance to improve their pitches for the big final.
The big winner was a team consisting of two students from São Paulo University's Polytechnic School (Brazil). Their project focuses on the creation of an app that monitors household appliances and responds to user commands, granting customers more information and autonomy regarding their energy consumption. This app features voice interfaces (Google Home and Alexa) to provide information to the customer. Moreover, energy trading and distribution companies can use both the
prediction algorithms to optimize the grid and the collected data to guide the public to energy awareness strategies.
The voice channel integrated into future homes' smart speakers can be used to advertise products and services, from funded solar panels to energy purchase/sale packages.
The two students did not expect to win the competition. Now they have won a weeklong trip to Silicon Valley, where they will discover the world capital of cutting-edge technology.
EDP University Challenge is an EDP initiative aimed at college students. The initiative boasts 13 editions in Portugal and 10 in Brazil; as for EDP Renováveis, the company has been holding this competition since 2009. This was the first time the three companies - EDP Portugal, EDP Renováveis and EDP Brasil - came together for a global final.
EDP has a global partnership with Premivalor Consulting and a local partnership in Portugal with Tekever and Spark Agency to maintain this initiative as a prestigious competition designed to stimulate entrepreneurship among university students.