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Marival UB from Norway wins Euronext “Blue Innovation Award” on World Oceans Day

09 June 2021

According to the World Bank, the blue economy can be defined as the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods and jobs, while preserving the health of ocean ecosystems. However, there is increasing evidence that losses in the oceans’ natural capital resulting from unsustainable economic activity are eroding the resource base on which such growth depends.

To enhance blue education and improve the environmental sustainability of the coastal communities in which it operates, Euronext is supporting mini-companies that best embody a sustainable use of the ocean resources for economic growth through the “Blue Innovation Award”. This year, the award gave student companies from Belgium, France Ireland, Norway, Portugal, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom the chance to join an international competition, and to develop and present innovative business ideas related to the blue economy.

On 8 June 2021, coinciding with World Oceans Day, six teams were invited to present their work remotely in front of a jury composed by Euronext executives Anthony Attia, Global Head of Primary Markets and Post Trade; Emilie Rieupeyroux, Head of Innovation; Nicolas Rivard, Head of Advanced Data Services; and Orla O’Gorman, Head of Listing Ireland and UK; in addition to Sturla Henriksen, Special Advisor on Oceans to the UN Global Compact.

The winning team was announced at the end of the online event – Marival UB, an innovative youth enterprise formed by students who study at Romsdal upper secondary school in the northwest coast of Norway. Focusing on the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, their product reflects sound waves, allowing fishermen to locate lost equipment immediately thanks to an echo sounder. Standing out from the rest, the students from Marival UB successfully demonstrated their understanding of the blue economy fundamentals and made a good use of basic financial literacy concepts, including core aspects about their business model.

Salvatore Nigro, CEO JA Europe said: “On World Oceans Day, we are reminded that the sustainability of our oceans may be easily threatened by human intervention. More than ever, we must adhere to the principles of the blue economy and encourage young people to improve stewardship of oceans and other blue resources to foster economic growth”. He added: “The Blue Innovation Award” is a practical way to showcase the huge economic opportunities linked to the blue economy while ensuring the protection of our oceans.

The “Blue Innovation Award” was the culminating event of a partnership that started in February 2021, involving more than 100 Company Programme students from 7 countries who have participated in a series of activities providing exposure to the blue economy, including the promotion of financial literacy. Through this collaboration, Euronext underlines the important role of the financial sector in boosting the blue economy by contributing to the promotion of financial literacy and innovation among students aged 16 to 18, while acknowledging JA’s Company Programme as a unique opportunity for engagement in the area of mentoring and coaching the next generation of European citizens.

About JA Europe

JA Europe is the largest non-profit in Europe dedicated to preparing young people for employment and entrepreneurship. JA Europe is a member of JA Worldwide® which for 100 years has delivered hands on, experiential learning in entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy. JA creates pathways for employability, job creation and financial success. Last school year, the JA network in Europe reached almost 4 million young people across 40 countries with the support of nearly 100,000 business volunteers and over 140,000 teachers/educators.

About Euronext

Euronext is the leading pan-European market infrastructure, connecting local economies to global capital markets, to accelerate innovation and sustainable growth. It operates regulated exchanges in Belgium, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Portugal. With close to 1,900 listed issuers worth €5.6 trillion in market capitalisation as of end March 2021, it has an unmatched blue-chip franchise and a strong diverse domestic and international client base. Euronext operates regulated and transparent equity and derivatives markets, one of Europe’s leading electronic fixed income trading markets and is the largest centre for debt and funds listings in the world. Its total product offering includes Equities, FX, Exchange Traded Funds, Warrants & Certificates, Bonds, Derivatives, Commodities and Indices. Euronext also leverages its expertise in running markets by providing technology and managed services to third parties. In addition to its main regulated market, it also operates a number of junior markets, simplifying access to listing for SMEs. Euronext provides custody and settlement services through central securities depositories in Denmark, Italy, Norway and Portugal.

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