Can ethical business models be both profitable and create positive change? This is the question that the non-profit foundation Norrsken and its nomination partners address in the context of the annual award "Impact/100." This year, also on the list, is cylib.
One hundred start-ups impressed the jury with their sustainable entrepreneurial ideas and can now count themselves among the most distinguished impact start-ups in the world, with cylib being one of them. The founders of cylib, Lilian Schwich, Paul Sabarny, and Dr. Gideon Schwich, express their happiness, stating, "We are thrilled that our technology has gained international recognition. At the same time, we acknowledge that this award represents just a small step on our journey."
The selection criteria for the Norrsken 100 list are rigorous; the idea or product must have the potential to impact the lives of one billion people. Using slogans such as "100 ways to fix the future" and "100 ideas with the potential to change 1 billion lives," the Swedish foundation Norrsken, founded by Klarna founder Niklas Adalberth, employs the "Impact/100" award to spotlight these companies while setting high standards.
An award designed to change the world
Whether it's addressing climate change, pollution, social inequality, or threats to biodiversity, the world needs innovative solutions to some of its most pressing global problems. Norrsken (Swedish: Northern Lights) has found the solutions it seeks in the business models of innovative start-ups worldwide. The foundation takes this starting point and uses its award to highlight the start-ups that are changing the world with their scalable technologies. cylib and 99 other impact start-ups impressed the Norrsken jury and their partners, all of whom adhere to strict selection criteria.
How can cylib excel?
cylib is part of a fast-growing company where positive impact is an essential and non-negotiable part of the business model. Moreover, cylib contributes to several of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which Norrsken considers. In particular, goals 7, 12, and 13 (Clean Energy, Responsible Production & Consumption, Climate Action) receive a noticeable positive impact from cylib technology. With a scalable technology, the start-up pursues a clear sustainable mission with its innovative end-to-end battery recycling process: reducing the environmental impact of battery waste and recovering valuable resources. The Norrsken Foundation seeks start-ups with such a clear mission that make a real positive difference. In addition to delivering proven results, these projects must be innovative, creative, and unique in their ideas. The awardees must also demonstrate their capability to take their work to a global level, all of which cylib already fulfills as it expands further into action with the upcoming opening of its own pilot line in Aachen Rothe-Erde.
More than just an award
The "Impact/100" award has a significant impact on the award winners and society alike. Award recipients gain access to a network of peers, mentors, and resources that enable start-ups like cylib to improve and expand their work. Additionally, the award serves as a source of inspiration and a role model for others. The stories of the award winners inspire people worldwide to work for positive change and seek innovative solutions to the pressing problems of our time. Therefore, the question posed at the beginning can be unequivocally answered with a resounding "yes." Ethical business models can be profitable and create positive change; they represent the great social opportunity we need to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.