The implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and international climate policy poses major challenges for the transformation of society, but also creates major new business opportunities. The implementation of the SDGs offers 60 new market hotspots with a market potential of $12 trillion. The race to tap into these opportunities will be won by the most innovative regions of the world. In the global battle for the best talent and start-ups, the regions with the best innovation ecosystems, support services, and framework conditions will come out ahead and seize the economic opportunities. The scaling of start-ups to mature companies remains a challenge through the European Union. The 2020 McKinsey Report states that the EU is producing a substantial number of start-ups but that only 0.4% - 1.8% of them scale to become successful companies. The US scales three times as many with Silicon Valley alone at the same level as the entire EU. The German ecosystems and North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) have so far only ranked in the middle within the EU. As a result, many successful start-ups migrate away from Germany due to a lack of support. The state of NRW has responded to some of these challenges with its New Start-up Era "North Rhine-Westphalia" strategy with the goal to becoming a hot-spot for start-ups in Europe. Leveraging its leadership in chemistry and technology innovation, NRW aims to attract teams of founders from all over Europe. The GEC complements NRW‘s innovation programme and specifically addresses the gap in European innovation systems in scaling start-ups to mature companies. It responds to the challenges of transformation, structural change, and the creation of one of the world‘s most attractive ecosystems. The GEC will make a key contribution to the transformation towards a carbon neutral and sustainable industry, shaping structural change in the Rhenish coal mining area. The GEC has assembled an experienced international team with extraordinary competencies and networks. On this basis, the GEC will develop a GEC House (innovation house) and a GEC Valley (innovation park), and thus create the basis for a supercluster of sustainable innovation in NRW.