Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: FaunaPhotonics from Denmark

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Our CODE_n Finalists FaunaPhotonics is planning to work in partnership with the crop science industry to offer seamless data integration between in-field sensors and the leading digital farming software platforms. This will enable crop science players to make advancements in data analytics. In this interview, CEO Frederik Taarnhøj lets us know how exactly this works and what it could mean for the agricultural market (- let’s just say right here – it could mean quite a lot)!

What is FaunaPhotonics all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Frederik: FaunaPhotonics is specialized in developing and providing laser devices in a new and exciting field. Our technology can perform real time spatial mapping of flying insects. For this we use a LIDAR, an instrument that emits a broad laser beam and detects the reflected light from insects, giving information about the size, behaviour or even color of the biological object. Accurate knowledge about the presence of pest insects in agriculture or disease vectors such as malaria mosquitoes is a key component in developing new and more sustainable strategies. Thus, we aim to quantify nature to ensure sustainable crop utilization and to improve tools for disease control and biodiversity for the benefit of mankind. We are working with partners in agriculture, malaria control and environmental monitoring to bring our new technique to market. The laser technology making this possible was invented by a creative researcher at Lund University in Sweden. FaunaPhotonics, which is based in Denmark is working hard to activate application of the LIDAR technology in high impact fields with very skilled employees joining our journey.
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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: NovioSense from the Netherlands

noviosense_logoNovioSense, CODE_n CONTEST Finalist in the HealthTech cluster, is a medical sensor company that develops cellphone-powered sensor devices for glucose monitoring in diabetics. Their first product is a non-invasive, wireless, cellphone-powered sensor that measures glucose levels in tears. CEO Dr. Christopher Wilson, has run us through his vision for the young Dutch company – which is quite amazing. Read for yourself!

What is noviosense all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Christopher: NovioSense is all about changing the status quo in diabetes monitoring. We are going to bring a non-invasive glucose monitor with the accuracy of minimally invasive devices at a price point that is accessible to all diabetics. The idea first came from two of my shareholders – they wanted to make a device that measures glucose in tears for type 1 diabetics. Type 1 diabetics are still part of the plan but over the past five years since founding the company and starting to raise the capital, we realised that this solution could be a whole lot more than a niche device. Providing the patient with the ability to take the equivalent of infinite finger pricks without pain and at a price point that is accessible to all opens the door to a market ten times larger than the original concept. Aside from the market size, it is something that all stakeholders want. We talked to doctors who told us that if we can be as accurate and reliable as the current devices but encourage patients to test more and take a more proactive role in the control of their disease. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

“Karlsruhe is motor of digitization and hotspot for digital pioneers”

You want to know why your startup should settle down in Karlsruhe rather than Munich or Berlin? Who better to speak to than Matthias Hornberger – board member of our new.New Festival supporter Cyberforum and CFO of Kizoo – who knows the city better than anyone else. In this interview, we also took the opportunity to talk to Matthias about his opinion of many more aspects, like the way the tech scene has changed over the years or his advice for startups fishing for venture capital.

Matthias, you are CyberForum’s Chairman of the Board, and CFO of Kizoo Technology Capital, an investment company with a focus on digital startups. Which advice do you give a startup fishing for venture capital?

Matthias: Build a great product disrupting a large addressable market with a clear focus and a strong, tech-oriented team. Swing for the fences! The business model of venture capitalist does not allow for investments into small target markets or products far away from having true customer impact. (A solo entrepreneur also does not fit the ideal profile. Especially in tech startups, teamwork and complementary skills are absolutely necessary).

Matthias Hornberger, CFO, Kizoo Technology Capital GmbH

Matthias Hornberger, CFO, Kizoo Technology Capital GmbH | Fotograf: Christian Ernst

Talking process, preparation is key. Create an equity story convincing enough not only for the upcoming round, prepare a crisp pitch deck and then strive to get `warm` introductions. This significantly increases the chance to earn a shot at the can, a date to present personally. Know your counterpart before you enter the ring and – if you lose the bout – hang in there. Stamina is the most important character property of entrepreneurs – young or old. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: Kantox from the UK

kantox_logoKantox is a multinational FinTech company offering FX management solutions which allow customers to manage their currency exposure, build hedging strategies, and automate FX transactions and process international payments in a smart way. Headquartered in London, the startup will join us as CODE_n CONTEST finalist at our new.New Festival in Karlsruhe, September, this fall. Prior to that, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Philippe Gelis has taken the time to tell us more about his company!

What is Kantox all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Philippe: Kantox is a FinTech company offering foreign exchange management solutions. We develop technology to solve one of the major pain-points faced by international companies: currency management.

Before founding Kantox, I worked as a strategy consultant for different consulting firms including Deloitte. During my time there, one of my clients exporting food and wine was exposed to a foreign exchange. With the assistance of my then-colleague and Kantox co-founder Toni, we tried to help him negotiate with banks. We soon realised that the negotiation process was expensive and complex for a mid-sized firm with no access to live rates.

This experience allowed us to identify a gap in the market and therefore, an opportunity for launching a business. Large companies have the resources and knowledge to manage foreign exchange well and to negotiate fair and transparent prices with banks. By contrast, SMEs either have enormous difficulty doing so. They lack internal resources, technology and negotiation power.

Philippe Gelis, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer

Philippe Gelis, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Kantox

At the onset, solving this painpoint was at the core of our value proposition. Our expertise, products, and solutions allow our customers to manage their currency exposure, build hedging strategies, automate FX transactions and process international payments in a smart and cost-efficient way.

As we expanded our business further, we realised that automation is at the base of efficiency in managing foreign exchange. In Kantox, we develop FX management software solutions that allow our clients to automate their currency strategy as well as to easily hedge their risk exposure.

We have also released our API end of last year to help clients completely automating the management of their foreign exchange exposure. That way, they have FX risk much better managed, they sabe time and increase efficiency. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: HealMet from the United States

hm_logoJason Drury, CEO and founder has talked to us about his startup HealMet: With their voice-controlled, home-based multi-vital parameter platform device people are enabled to take action before a disease becomes life-threatening. HealMet was picked as one of our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists in the HealthTech sector. In this interview, Jason lets us know how their solution helps to save money, improve people’s behavior, and share information. A simple touch with two hands could avoid millions of deaths, suffering, and disability.

What is HealMet all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Jason: Most homes and offices have no on-site health station, requiring people to travel to medical sites for even the most basic health information.
Our bodies are constantly changing with age on a daily and yearly basis, which inevitably leads to slow degeneration of health that causes primarily preventable fatal and chronic diseases.

“Digital Disruption“ – that’s the motto of this year’s CODE_n CONTEST. What makes your solution innovative, what makes it disruptive?

Jason: Can you imagine a home 20 years into our future that doesn’t have an interactive medical diagnostic station inside? HealMet’s M1 isn’t a wearable, so you don’t need one for every employee or family member, you just need one. And you get fast vitals by simply grasping it with both hands for only seconds. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: senvisys from Germany

senvisys_logosenvisys – a CODE_n CONTEST finalist in the Connected Mobility cluster, works together with railway operators to develop sensors for a suitable early warning system on trains. The company produces the software internally (patent pending) and the hardware is either assembled internally or outsourced under strict confidentiality. Product Manager Janis Grinhofs talkes to us about the initial idea, obstacles and successes of his startup.

What is senvisys all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Janis: Everything began while reading about a level crossing accident in a newspaper. The question came: “Why are these still technically unsecured, since the level of technical development and automatization has greatly improved over the years. The problem lay in the high amount of expensive cabling required to detect a train that is approaching a level crossing early enough, which made conventional solutions uneconomical. Hence we set out to solve this problem from a different angle, and decided to try and use the rails as the medium for transmitting the information about incoming trains. And this is how we got to evaluating vibrations.

During our research we found that similar solutions already exist: They also use the vibration concept for early train detection, but the main drawback of these solutions is that they can not reliably predict the correct time of when a train will approach the measurement point. Our solution does not have this drawback and moreover, we managed to predict the direction a train is moving in and it’s speed long before it reaches the crossing (2 to 5 km in advance). From all the collected data we could localize the position of a train along the measurement range, which gives great precision and timing for safeguarding of level crossings. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: nevisQ from Germany

nevisq_logonevisQ provides patented smart baseboards that can recognize and analyze activity in rooms. The young HealthTech startup therefore provides a solution which can detect and prevent falls in nursing homes. In the event of a fall, the nurse is notified via an app/web or an app/bell system. Dennis Breuer, Co-Founder and Managing Director of nevisQ told us more about his young company, which is among our CODE_n CONTEST finalists this year.

What is nevisQ all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Dennis: nevisQ develops technologies to make living in rooms easier and more secure. Our first application is a system which automatically prevents and detects falls of elderly people. By simply installing smart baseboards we can monitor objects, persons and activities in a room. Our solution helps nurses in a nursery care home to keep the overview of all residents and therefore to work more efficient. In addition to that, the follow-up costs of a fall can be reduced.

“Digital Disruption“ – that’s the motto of this year’s CODE_n CONTEST. What makes your solution innovative, what makes it disruptive?

Dennis: Our system is to a high degree self-thinking and -acting, which means that certain actions of people are no longer necessary. Elderly people do not need to wear any gadgets or execute actions on their phone. The system performs all of it by its own by recognizing and analyzing the behavior of people. The number-one solution to prevent and detect falls of elderly people in Germany is a button which they have to carry around their neck. This is very stigmatizing and in case of an emergency, most people are not able to press the button or are not wearing it at all. Our solution is based on a completely new way of detecting and preventing falls, using artificial intelligence. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: otego from Germany

otego_logoCODE_n CONTEST finalist otego is poised to be the first manufacturer of low-cost thermoelectric generators (TEGs) that are suitable for mass use. By avoiding batteries in IoT devices, otego TEGs are a sustainable solution for harvesting energy using wireless sensors and actuators. Frederick Lessmann (Business Development), has answered all our questions about his startup that was selected for the photonics cluster:

What is otego all about? How did you come up with the idea?

Frederick: otego develops innovative thermoelectric generators (TEGs) that transform heat sources into sources of electricity – maintenance-free and by utilizing even small differences in temperature. With otego-TEGs many Internet of Things devices will gain a new power source that makes them independent from batteries.

“Digital Disruption“ – that’s the motto of this year’s CODE_n CONTEST. What makes your solution innovative, what makes it disruptive?

Frederick: Ambient heat is almost everywhere. But so far we don’t really know how to utilize these small differences in temperature. What solar cells are for transforming light into electrical power our generators will be the equivalent for the transformation of heat. In other words, thanks to our generators heat sources will turn into power sources all of the sudden. I think this is pretty disruptive. And most importantly our generators will cost less than alternatives like cables or batteries which hopefully will make them a true innovation in the market. More…