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Smart Cities Marketplace

City Financing Platforms


The City Financing Platform initiative aims to increase the awareness of financing platforms which are adapted to the specific needs of small to mid-sized smart city projects. There are various models and share a common philosophy of connecting interested parties to close deals. The platform are especially popular in areas of energy efficiency an renewables. City projects which are mature enough will benefit from this awareness to pass from plan to action.


Contribute to summary paper “Digital Financing Platforms for Cities” (until March 2021)

Objective of summary paper

Deliver an overview of digital financing platforms in operation or in development which can be used to finance smart city projects especially in small and medium sized cities. Examples are TrustEE ( or eQuad (

How to contribute

If you run, develop or have heard about such platforms, just email 

Purpose of summary paper

We intent to publish the summary paper as a “work in progress” paper in March/April 2021 highlighting digital financing platforms scope, functioning principles and applicability for smart city projects.
Applicability and barriers will be discussed during Smart City Marketplace round tables, validated through exchange with H2020-SCC1 projects and the support of SCALE - the EC contract assisting the Lighthouse project group.
Webinars will be designed to showcase real applications for city projects.


Objective of City Financing Platforms Initiative

Through this initiative we endeavour:

  • to increase the awareness of existing and new financing platforms suitable to provide financing for small to mid-sized smart city projects especially in the areas of energy efficiency and renewables;
  • to connect interested parties to close deals

In order to achieve this, the initiative lead team will use various forms of communication to build awareness, engage directly with relevant parties such as cities, city developers, regional utilities or ESCOs and facilitate exchange among initiative participants to share city requirements, learnings and success cases.

Opportunity: Financing platforms present an alternative route of financing especially for small and medium sized cities which includes the majority of H2020-SCC1 Fellow cities.

Barrier: Most financing platforms require a certain project structuring, similar to investor requirements, which needs to be considered by cities early in the project planning process. Secondly, the public procurement process needs to be reviewed towards its legal alignment with use of financing platforms. This will be done through the exchange with H2020-SCC1 projects and the support of SCALE - the EC contract assisting the Lighthouse project group.


  • The initiative has started in 2020 with a round-table during the EIP-SCC matchmaking event in February 2020 as part of the Covenant of Majors conference.

  • In Q4-2020, we will present a summary paper listing existing and in-development financing platforms, their scope, functioning principles and applicability for smart city projects.

  • Every following year (2021-2022) we will run an interactive webinar showcasing the functioning of a financing platform using a real case example.

  • Every following year (2021-2022) the initiative lead will chair a round-table discussion as part of the EIP-SCC matchmaking events.

Target audience

  • Lighthouse cities
  • Small- and medium-sized cities, including but not limited to H2020-SCC1 fellow cities
  • City service providers, e.g. city developers, regional utilities, ESCOs and technical solution implementation providers, procurement experts
  • Financing platforms
  • Banks and investment funds (also acting as re-financing entities of financing platforms)

Desired outcomes

  • Increased awareness of financing platform opportunities through a) two webinars with 150 participants each b) two round-tables c) Financing platform summary paper
  • Identification of barriers and solutions for small and medium sized smart city projects intending to use financing platforms through a) two round-tables b) AC & Initiative exchange (e.g. with Small Giants initiative)
  • Close deals a) two to three deals till end 2022 acting as example use cases for further replication.
  • Synergies with other ACs: The BM&F Action Cluster is a horizontal action cluster. Regular exchange and information of other AC initiatives is foreseen within the AC exchange structure to identify potential use cases, barriers and solutions.
  • Outreach and collaboration with other networks in this space, starting with Covenant of Majors, SEIF, EEFIG, City associations (international, national, regional) and ESCO associations



Winfried Braumann
Initiative Lead


(1.83 MB - PDF)
(684.75 KB - PDF)