Belgium scaleup Rombit has signed a Scaleup Support Agreement with the EIT Digital Accelerator to help it expand into new foreign markets.
The Antwerp based IoT solution provider has already implemented IoT solutions for smart cities and harbours in Belgian cities and municipalities.
Antwerp, with half a million residents and one of Europe’s largest harbours, is currently the biggest city using Rombit’s technology, says Chief Strategic Officer Evert Bulcke, who added: “San Francisco is a new opportunity for us.”
According to Bulcke, the uniqueness of Rombit’s technology was one of the reasons to work with the EIT Digital Accelerator to grow quickly in new markets. He said: “We want to roll-out our solutions worldwide. EIT Digital can introduce us into diverse networks. We are already talking with the city council of San Francisco. It is very interesting for us to work with EIT Digital’s local teams who know their own markets and regulatory environments and can advise us on how to adjust our product offering.”
As well as the USA, Rombit also wants to expand into European markets such as the Netherlands and France.
The collaboration with the EIT Digital Accelerator is a logical consequence of Rombit’s participation in the EIT Digital Challenge. Rombit was one of the finalists in the Digital Cities category.
Bulcke said: “We developed very good relationships with EIT Digital’s business developers. We see EIT Digital as an organisation that can open doors for us with customers that we want to work with. The challenges have been an educational journey and have given us a good introduction to EIT Digital’s ecosystem and value.”
The scale-up makes both soft- and hardware to smart manage cities and harbours. One application of Rombit is ‘A*Sign’ a smart city software application that proves how smart traffic signalisation contributes to smart city management. Bulcke adds: “Every day, 20% of public spaces such as pavements, streets and parking lots are taken out of public use by citizens or construction workers putting containers such as skips in them or executing public works. This puts pressure on the space available and causes parking and mobility problems. With A*Sign, city workers can better monitor all the works that are taking place in their city at any one time.
“Rombit is the first company in the world to have developed digital road signs that display temporary parking restrictions. The signs display on a digital screen where people cannot temporarily park their cars. The signs are connected to a cloud platform giving city workers an overview of the entire city. As well as processing all requests for temporary use of public spaces, they control the digital signs remotely. The result is that cities and municipalities experience fewer parking and mobility problems.”