Petrobras launches R$ 20 million public notice for startups

Petrobras launches R$ 20 million public notice for startups

Applications for the 4th call for the Startups Module, of the Petrobras Connections for Innovation Program, launched by the company are open until June 29th. The disclosure of the companies selected in the first stage of the process is scheduled for July. The regulation can be found on here. startups are emerging technology-based companies.Petrobras launches R$ 20 million public notice for startups

The public notice has a total value of R$ 20 million and involves 30 challenges distributed in seven technological areas: robotics, carbon reduction, digital technologies, energy storage and generation, corrosion, geological modeling and inspection technologies.

The investment to be made in the projects depends on the level of complexity of the challenges. At the end of the selection, the winning companies can receive amounts up to R$ 500 thousand, for the challenges soft techsor up to R$ 1.5 million for the deep techs.

At soft techs are startups that develop technologies based on software (computer program), eventually integrated into hardware (equipment) already mature. Already the deep techs develop intensive technology in advanced research, with a long maturation time, including those based on hardware, software high performance and new materials.

The director of Digital Technology and Innovation at Petrobras, Juliano Dantas, highlighted that the company is one of the main investors in open innovation in the country, accounting for around R$ 36 million in investment over three years only in the Startups Module of the Petrobras Conexões program. for Innovation.

“It contributes to the development of innovative technologies and services, accelerating the incorporation of innovations in the company”. In previous editions of the Startups Module, 37 companies were selected to develop solutions, which accelerated the incorporation of innovations in the company, while opening doors for ‘startups’ in an industry increasingly intensive in Innovation, recalled Dantas.


The selected companies have the support of the Micro and Small Business Support Service (Sebrae), Petrobras’ partner in this module of the program, in addition to expertise of the company’s technical staff for activities such as adapting the proposals selected in the first stage and preparing for the pitch day or presentation of the project to the final panel of judges. The final stage winners receive financial investment, mentoring for the projects and business model. They also have the opportunity to become Petrobras’ suppliers, with the potential for scale in the national and international industry.

The technical director of Sebrae Nacional, Bruno Quick, stressed that the objective is to make it possible for small businesses to be protagonists in the oil and gas chain, developing cutting-edge technology and innovation. According to Quick, while participating in the program, Sebrae offers all the necessary support to the startupsfrom the orientation for the physical-financial execution of the projects, in accordance with the required requirements, as well as the support actions to increase competitiveness and the elaboration of business models,


One of the successful examples is the startup CTR3SM, selected in the 2020 public notice, which concludes this month the Harpia project, a robotic platform composed of a remotely piloted aircraft, equipped with sensors and cameras, and a software (computer program) that combines artificial intelligence and computer vision. The technology can accurately detect the type, degree of corrosion and repair needs of a surface. The equipment is similar to a drone and will be used for inspection of large industrial areas that are difficult to access.

In addition to reducing costs and hours worked, the resource avoids exposing people to risk. Because it manages to capture images that are inaccessible to human eyes, as with birds of prey, the platform was named Harpia.

One of the company’s four partners, André Carvalhais, reported that he was looking for funding after a job proposal failed, due to the covid-19 pandemic, when he heard about Petrobras’ public notice. “We had an idea for the inspection of assets in the electricity sector and we saw that there was an opportunity there. We have already participated in other public notices, but Petrobras’ process is one of the most transparent: there is a public notice, the criteria are very well defined. Petrobras has the maturity of financial execution. You enter knowing what you will be able to spend. The demand level is high, but you have all the conditions for execution”, said Carvalhais.


Since its launch in 2019, the Petrobras Connections for Innovation Program has grown and now houses six different modules: Startups, Technological Partnerships, Technology Transfer, Solution Acquisition, Ignition and Technological Orders. Soon, two new initiatives will be incorporated. Petrobras currently has a portfolio of more than R$ 3 billion contracted, with more than 150 technological partners, in the various types of contracting and cooperation agreements.

The Startups Module of the program arose from Petrobras’ interest in strengthening its relationship with the innovation ecosystem, specifically with ‘startups’ and small technology-based companies.

The investment aims to meet internal demands mapped by the company and the agile development of solutions with the possibility of implementation in the oil and gas industry. According to the company, the results are already visible. Through the program, the company allocates resources to the best ‘startups’ that are interested in cooperating to solve them, which, on the one hand, encourages research and innovation and, on the other, generates demand.

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