Gen-E 2024

Gen-E 2024 Winners Announced!

Gen-E 2024 European Entrepreneurship Festival winners announced in Catania, Italy

[Catania, 4 July 2024] On 4 July, Europe’s largest Festival of Youth Entrepreneurship #Gen_E wrapped up in Catania with a final Awards Ceremony announcing winners of Europe’s leading competition for the best JA Company and Start Up 2024.

We were honoured of the message of the President of the Council of Ministries of Italy and G7 2024 President, Giorgia Meloni: “I  would  like  to  thank  JA  Europe  for  choosing  Italy  as  the  venue  for  the  2024  edition  of  GEN-E,  and  I  extend  my  greetings  to  all  the  young  entrepreneurs,  teachers  and  students  who  brought life  the  festival  and  transformed  Catania  into  the  Capital  of  Entrepreneurship  for  three  days. […] Encouraging  the  entrepreneurial  vocation  of  the  young  generations,  stimulating  attention to  training  and  promoting  an  innovation-oriented  approach  are  decisive  actions  to  face  the  challenges  of  our  time.”

Winners were awarded by the Minister of Sport and Youth, Mr. Andrea Abodi.
Join us in celebrating Europe’s best youth businesses 2024! 


Upper secondary level winners: 

  • JA Europe Company of the Year 2024 (business track): Treberei, Austria 

Pasta made from organic spent grains is the sustainable and delicious solution for converting surplus brewery waste into valuable food and thus making an important contribution to the circular economy. 

  • JA Europe Innovation of the Year 2024 (innovation track): 99Robotics,  Denmark 

99Robotics combines biology, technology, AI, and agricultural engineering to reduce CO2e emissions and leaching of nitrate into water bodies, as well as to reduce topsoil degradation. By planting cover crops at the right time, in the right place, we can help dairy farmers across Europe towards a more sustainable future. 

University level winners: 

  • JA Europe Innovation of the Year 2024 (innovation track): Oculare, Denmark 

Oculare is a cutting-edge rescue robot designed to eliminate drowning accidents in harbors, canals, and lakes. The robot employs machine learning to accurately distinguish between humans and other objects in the water. By combining data from multiple sensors, and by applying deep neural networks, the robot can quickly identify and rescue distressed individuals. 

  • JA Europe Start Up of the Year 2024 (business track):, Turkiye is a AI-powered analytics software that analyses smart meter data to predict energy demand and flag unbilled consumption for energy distributors and cities. The unique value proposition of lies in the fact that it provides analytics capability for 2 main problems of energy distributors (demand planning and electricity theft) simultaneously by using the power of artificial intelligence. 

Organised by JA Europe and hosted this year by JA Italy, Gen-E 2024 saw an inspirational showcase of entrepreneurial innovation by students from over 40 European countries. The competing teams were among almost 400,000 students who created their JA business in the 2023-24 school year and competed in regional, national and online competition, and had qualified to represent their country at Gen-E in Catania. 

Speaking at the Gen-E Awards Ceremony, Italian Minister of Sport and Youth, Mr. Andrea Abodi stated: “Investing in education, training, and guidance for young people is fundamental for the growth and improvement of our Nation. I am pleased to see Italy playing a leading role in mobilizing stakeholders in youth entrepreneurship across Europe, and I thank all of you for believing in these young talents and for supporting them with your experience, offering them opportunities. I renew my commitment before you to work with all my colleagues in the Italian government and European Ministers to provide tools and opportunities that encourage the active participation of young people in productive life, enhance their capacity to contribute, combat the effects of discomfort in all its forms, and contribute to the consolidation of the economic and social value chain. These are essential conditions to ensure that young generations have the prospects we all need to face the challenges of this complex and controversial time with confidence.” 

Laurence Morvan, Chair of JA Europe said: “Inspiration is the start of any entrepreneurial journey, and this is why Gen-E European Entrepreneurship Festival is so important in instilling a sense of curiosity, creativity and entrepreneurial mindset among the next generation of Europeans. All along the school year, our JA network across 40 countries in Europe empowers the youth to acquire the necessary skillset to succeed in the world of work and to set up and run successful businesses. Through Gen-E, JA Europe gives them an international platform to showcase, compete and celebrate with talented peers from all over Europe. It is a unique experience for the youth, for the partners and for educators involved.” 


Salvatore Nigro, CEO JA Europe, added: “Gen-E 2024 represents a pivotal moment when we can combine past excellence with future opportunity, and ensure that young talents everywhere in Europe get the opportunity to unleash their full potential. We call upon policymakers, business leaders and education expert to act now for a concrete impact on the Europe of our youth.” 

In addition to the 4 Main Awards, the national winners from each country competed in Catania for a number of European and national signature awards: 

Winners of European Signature Awards – Upper-Secondary Level: 

  • Germany – Giulio Pellino 
  • Austria – Julian Zefferer 
  • Ise of man – Miltos Provatakis 
  • Cyprus – Melina Papageorgiou 
  • Uk – Nela Dafydd 

Winners of European Signature Awards – University Level: 

  • Montenegro – Andrea Milacic 
  • Norway – Pawel Piotr Janiszewski 
  • Netherlands – Caspar Mooij 
  • Anna Maria Demetriou – PREVENTA, Cyprus 
  • Andrea Milacic – DataBite Food Consulting, Montenegro 
  • Mara-Ioana Hutart – RoBlue Engineers, Romania 

Furthermore, Unioncamere supported the EmpowerHer National Signature Award: Treberei, Austria 

Gen-E 2024 was also the occasion to bring entrepreneurial excellence to the South of Italy to inspire the local ecosystems with best practices from other countries.  

Antonio Perdichizzi, Chair of JA Italia, stressed that “the impact of Gen-E 2024 European Entrepreneurship Festival will be long-lasting, and this event has given our region the boost and motivation necessary to tackle the societal issues of youth.  

Miriam Cresta, CEO of JA Italia added: “JA Italia will continue its growth strategy together with our 50 partners aiming to benefit as many young Italians as possible, equipping them with an entrepreneurial skillset and mindset to build thriving communities across our country.” 

Alongside the European final competition for JA national winners, Gen-E 2024 was also a key forum for topical workshops and Masterclasses for the European entrepreneurship ecosystem stakeholders. Together with Intel, JA Europe organised a capacity building session for teachers and educators on blending AI into entrepreneurship education. The FedEx Masterclass showcased to this year’s competing students the power of understanding global access for entrepreneurs and business leaders and featured an interactive discussion with JA Alumni.

The FedEx Public Choice Award 2024 went to team that managed to attract most online votes at their virtual stand in the Virtual Expo – and this year’s winning team is Let’s Go from Greece! 

We congratulate all winners of this year’s Gen-E European Entrepreneurship Festival and invite everyone to discover them on the Gen-E website and Virtual Expo! 


About Gen-E 

Gen-E is Europe’s largest Entrepreneurship event, a celebration of entrepreneurship and the achievements of European youth. Thousands of European students, from 15 years old onwards, showcase their cutting–edge business ideas online and on-site. The Gen-E Festival also combines two annual European entrepreneurship contests for the winners of JA Company and the JA Start-Up Programme from over 40 countries. Gen-E 2025 will be held in Athens, Greece.  

About JA Europe 

JA Europe is the largest and leading organisation in Europe dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed. For over 100 years, JA Worldwide has delivered hands-on, experiential learning in entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial health. In the last school year, the JA Europe network in over 40 countries provided 6 million learning experiences for youth in online, in person and blended formats with the support of nearly 110,000 teachers and almost 90,000 business volunteers. In 2024, JA Worldwide was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, the third nomination in three years. 

Press & media contact at JA Europe: 

Minna Melleri 
Chief of Advocacy and Growth 

Tel. +47 48244861 

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