FIA - Smart Cities


The FIA Smart Cities Global Start-Up Contest

By leveraging the power of technology, the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) is working to make urban mobility safer, smarter and more accessible for all road users.

In 2017, the FIA created the FIA Smart Cities initiative to contribute to the implementation of the UN New Urban Agenda, with the aim of helping cities to define new models for more sustainable urban mobility.

As part of this initiative, the FIA organises the FIA Smart Cities Global Start-Up Contest with MassChallenge. The aim is to select 18 promising mobility startups from the Americas, Asia and Europe, and give them a platform to grow their network and visibility by connecting them to key mobility stakeholders in multinational corporates, government and public institutions.

Benefits for the 18 Start-Ups Selected

The FIA will select 18 start-ups and invite them to follow a three-day experience designed to grow their network with key mobility stakeholders and gain media exposure via the FIA’s and MassChallenge’s websites and social media channels.  The experiences will take place in three cities around the world during the FIA Smart Cities Forum and E-Prix weekend. Travel and accommodation will be covered for up to USD 1,000 per startup to facilitate attendance.

  • Day One
    Participation in a pitch contest with a jury comprised of around 10 senior representatives from leading companies in smart cities and mobility (e.g. ABBMichelinENEL and Julius Bär). Each startup will:
    • Connect with the jury in a network breakfast or dinner.
    • Compete to win the pitch contest (winner benefits listed below).

  • Day Two
    Participation in the FIA Smart Cities Forum, an exclusive event with 400 VIP attendees from the mobility and urban transport field (corporates, government planners, institutions). Each startup will:
    • Pitch to the 400 VIP attendees.
    • Have a booth at the FIA Smart Cities Forum.

  • Day Three
    Participation in the Formula E-Prix. Each startup will:
    • Obtain two free passes to attend the Formula E-Prix.
    • Have the option of having a booth at the E-Village, an exhibition space visited by thousands of attendees of the Formula E-Prix (highly valuable for B2C startups).


For the Winning Start-Up

After the Day One, the panel will select a winner from the six start-ups who pitched. In addition to the above, the winner will receive:

  • A specific press release from FIA and MassChallenge with an in-depth interview to be published on FIA’s and MassChallenge’s websites.
  • An invitation to an FIA global event focused on urban mobility, where they can access a network of world’s leading Automobile Clubs and Federations, relevant corporate and local government partners. Past winners attended the FIA Mobility Annual Conference, FIA Region I Marketing & Management Conference, and Green Tech Festival, where they were able to connect with leading experts across the transportation sector.
  • An invitation to attend MassChallenge’s Start-Up accelerator in Switzerland. This programme has helped hundreds of star-ups accelerate their business, and offers start-ups office space to help them develop the Swiss/EU market.

Eligibility Criteria

We are looking for mobility-focused technology start-ups that:

  • Are from Seed to Series C+. What’s important is that your start-up already has some traction. The benefit of the programme is meeting someone who can help you scale your idea.

  • Have Impactful, Viable and Innovative ideas:
    • Impactful: to massively benefit society and people living in cities.
    • Viable: easily adopted by consumers, governments and/or businesses; scaled to a city, and; replicable in other cities around the world.
    • Innovative: disruptive and ‘new to the world’ ideas; ideas that are new to your city or region.

  • Are from the Americas; Asia; and Europe. We especially welcome Start-ups wanting to make an impact in the region they will pitch in. Start-ups need to commit to travel to the event if they are selected.

  • Will increase safety, sustainability and accessibility for all road users in smart cities. Specifically, we are looking for start-ups who can bring benefits in the following areas:
    1. Innovations around new cars.
    2. Innovative safety applications, including products and services around mobility (infrastructure; bicycles; lighting).
    3. New services around multi-modal mobility.
    4. Society-focused services (e.g. health care; administration) connected to mobility needs.
    5. Applications and products that encourage user involvement on sustainable mobility issues.

We also accept ideas in adjacent areas. For more information, please refer to the application form.


Timeline and Key Dates

18 start-ups will be selected to pitch at one of the 3 FIA Smart Cities Forum (that is 6 start-ups at each Season 4 FIA Smart Cities Forum).

The key dates are:

  • Sept 9, 2019: Programme launch and call for applications
  • Nov 30, 2019: Closure of applications call at 23:59 CET
  • Dec 16, 2019: Announcement of the 18 finalists
  • Jan 16 to 18, 2020: Pitches in Santiago
  • May 1 to 3, 2020: Pitches in Seoul
  • July 23 to 25, 2020: Pitches in London


How to Apply

Applications are open until 23:59 CET November 30th 2019:

  1. Fill and submit the application form here
  2. We will get in touch with you shortly before December 16th to confirm your participation

Submit your Application by
November 30th, 2019 at 23:59 CET


Questions? Email us at

About the FIA

The Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) is the governing body for world motor sport and the federation of the world’s leading mobility organisations.

Founded in 1904, with headquarters in Paris and Geneva, the FIA is a non-profit organisation. It brings together 240 Member Organisations from 144 countries on five continents. Its Member Clubs represent over 80 million road users and their families.

The FIA promotes safe, sustainable and accessible mobility for all road users around the world.

Further details can be found at

About MassChallenge

MassChallenge is a global network of zero-equity startup accelerators. Headquartered in the United States with locations in Boston, Israel, Mexico, Rhode Island, Switzerland, Texas, and the UK, MassChallenge is committed to strengthening the global innovation ecosystem by supporting high-potential startups across all industries, from anywhere in the world. To date, more than 1,500 MassChallenge alumni have raised more than $3 billion in funding, generated over $2 billion in revenue, and created over 80,000 total jobs. Learn more about MassChallenge at