The customer is king and the king wishes new services nowadays. Induced by digitalization he has changed his expectations on services and products. While the customer can access product information and purchase easily mobile – whenever and wherever he wants – the competition between companies grows stronger. Thus, the most effective way to distinguish yourself from competitors remains the customer experience: it already drives two thirds of the decisions customers make, according to an insight by McKinsey. The motto is: provide a great customer experience – or you may lose your customer. And as usual, technology is your friend! Read on to find out how digital transformation and data analytics help to improve the customer experience.
What comes to your mind when you think of startup hubs? Silicon Valley, Berlin? Those are no doubt some of the best-known cities in that context. But we all know the world of startups is always in motion! New centers of innovative entrepreneurship come up like rising stars and offer new possibilities. Just like Helsinki! Finland’s capital has evolved to an innovative stronghold and surely is a city to keep an eye on. Helsinki is said to host over 500 tech startups and holds its share at the Nordic countries having Europe’s fastest growing startup scene. Let us dive deeper into the strengths, weaknesses and special powers of Helsinki as a tech startup hub!
Like the festival wristband? Cool! Fancy food trucks & Indie rock pop? Top international startups? We can’t miss that! That’s why homee goes festival. From September 20 to 22 the Codeatelier Team took part in the CODE_n new.New Festival in Karlsruhe.
We’re back as alumni!
This year CODE_n invited us to Karlsruhe, so that we could present our product homee to the festival visitors. As CODE_n alumni, we were allowed to take our place in the Community Area.
How did we manage to get there? For Codeatelier and homee, the journey started as long ago as 2013: Back then, in the CODE_n13 competition, which took place in Hannover during CeBit, we made it into the finalists – and won! homee convinced the jury and was honored with two prizes.
homee has become famous
Today, three years later, we can look back on a period of success. Without the opportunities provided by a platform like this, homee might not be in the position which we now enjoy: established in the smart home market. Each and every day, we are delighted that our Smart Home control unit makes living more convenient for our customers. More…
Massive Analytic, a pioneer in Artifical Precognition, was one of CODE_n’s finalists in 2014 and has come on leaps and bounds since its time with us in Hanover. In our next part of the CODE_n Alumni catch-up series, we talked to CEO George Frangou about the young company’s most important learnings and greatest achievements (like building a relationship with Microsoft) since then.
Following on from your time as a CODE_n finalist, what have been Massive Analytic’s greatest achievements?
George Frangou: I would say our greatest achievement has been the launch of Oscar AP on the Microsoft Azure Marketplace in June of this year. Our technology is now available for purchase. It’s exciting to be building that relationship with Microsoft. We’re also proud of our entry to the Lockheed Martin Virtual Technology Cluster. Getting both of those endorsements have been great for us.
What lessons have you learned or failures you’ve experienced and how have you coped with them?
George Frangou: The key lessons we have learned over the last year is to get our product messaging right. Often it is easy to be passionate about the product and describe it in a manner that does not resonate with the target audience. We were able to set that right on the back of our involvement in CODE_n and the client engagements that followed immediately.
What were your biggest takeaways from your time at CODE_n?
George Frangou: The biggest takeaway from CODE_n for me was seeing how many young innovative companies there are doing different and exciting things. It was great to share experiences and inspiring to see what’s going on. More…
Goerke, Founder & CEO of CODE_n Alumnus GPredictive
As CODE_n finalists from 2014, they are attending CODE_n15 at CeBIT as start-up veterans: GPredictive from Hamburg analyzes buying behavior from customer data to derive patterns for the future. The young company offers its analytical expertise as software-as-a-service. This means that it is affordable for smaller and medium-sized companies too.
As alumni, you’re again represented at this year’s CODE_n15 at CeBIT. Looking back, what were your impressions last year of your CODE_n premiere?
Björn Goerke (GPredictive): I think the entrepreneurial spirit at CODE_n is really exciting. There was a tremendous amount of energy in the venue. And the interest that our stand generated was simply overwhelming. It was usually after 4 p.m. before I managed to get anything to eat … Being mobbed by so many interested trade fair delegates was great fun. Everyone who came to see us really enjoyed looking at our business model.
What’s happened to your start-up in the last twelve months?
Björn Goerke (GPredictive): We’ve doubled in size and we now have a ten-strong team. We sourced a major investor in the form of Target Partners, and we’re now in a position to increase our team even further. Overall, we’ve massively optimized our product approach. Our analytics solution “Scores out of a box” now runs virtually fully automatically, which means that we’re able to respond much more quickly than we did a year ago. We now have a mature product and a growing number of satisfied customers. More…
In 2013, tado° was among the finalists of the CODE_n CONTEST. Since then, the Munich-based startup has become a fixed feature in the international smart home market. In our interview, CEO Christian Deilmann speaks about the Internet of Things (IoT), the role startups play in the IoT market, and his experiences with CODE_n.
Felix Jansen: Hi Christian! Deloitte recently released a market forecast stating that by 2020, one million households in Germany will be using smart, networked sensors and devices. That’s three times as many as today. How does your company see the market at the moment? Are we really about to see a breakthrough in smart homes?
Christian Deilmann: Everyone talks about smart homes, but if you ask some follow-up questions you discover that a lot of people don’t really know what the term means. Smart homes always involve a certain degree of complexity, and customers don’t yet know exactly how they will benefit. With tado°, we’re focusing on one specific part of the home, the heating system, because it accounts for most of the household energy consumption. Our smart heating controls let us show customers the precise advantages of networked products: they lower costs and are better for the environment while at the same time increasing comfort.
In the world of technology, at the moment hardly any phrase is bandied about more than “the Internet of Things.” Can it live up to the hype?
We’re all certain that in the future, all important aspects of our lives will be tied up with the digital world. This will lead to the creation of much better products, an entirely new customer experience, and a service industry which wouldn’t be possible without networking. Examples include networked cars, which make car-sharing programs possible, or smart thermostats, which save energy when no one is home or heat less when the sun is shining. Everywhere we look, online products will replace the offline products, making many aspects of our lives much easier.
This area is being pushed by major players such as Cisco, Microsoft, etc. What role can startups play in this broad field?
At the first run of the CODE_n CONTEST back in 2012, orderbird was one of the Top 10 contest finalists. Since then, the Berlin-based startup has continued to develop. The latest chapter in the story of its growth: successfully arranging a new funding phase and bringing a new strategic investor on board. We talked to Jakob Schreyer, CEO at orderbird, about his company and the way innovation is dealt with in the financial sector.
Felix Jansen: Hello, Jakob. Congratulations on entering a new funding phase. You’ve raised more than 10 million US dollars with orderbird. How do you plan to use that money?
Jakob Schreyer: Thanks. We plan to invest heavily in product development and expansion in new markets. With our Series B funding phase, we aren’t just receiving a considerable investment, but we are also embarking on a new strategic partnership with our main investor, ConCardis. We will be working in close collaboration, specifically in the area of cashless payments, but we are sure to both benefit from know-how exchange in many other areas as well.
Last year, you launched a pilot project with PayPal. Yet ConCardis, your newest and largest investor to date, is a more traditional company from the credit business sector. In your collaboration, have you noticed that you approach the topic of innovation from very different angles?
The area of “mobile payments” has garnered a lot of attention in recent years. The topics moved forward by big American players such as PayPal, and now strongly pushed by Apple, are arriving in the German-speaking world. ConCardis has shown a great openness to innovation. Targets seem to lie further apart when it comes to traditional B2B companies.
To what extent do you find the financial industry willing to fundamentally question established business practices and move toward new digital business models? More…
The excitement is in the air: Thursday, July 31, 2014 will see the official start to CODE_n 2015. At a press conference to be held in cooperation with our partner, CeBIT, we will unveil our motto for the next round of our global innovation contest and our plans for the exhibition at CeBIT in March 2015.
The only thing we can divulge before the big presentation: Next year, the CODE_n contest at CeBIT will be even more exciting, even more spectacular and more involving than ever before.
Our plans for CODE_n15 will be presented on Thursday by Andrea Wlcek, Director of Group Marketing & CODE_n at the GFT Group, which was the initiator of the CODE_n.
The CODE_n innovation contest is held each year under a new theme – topics that we believe will shape digital society and business in the years to come. In 2014, we looked at the issue of big data. The theme for next year’s CODE_n15 contest will be revealed at the press conference.
As in past years, the 2015 contest will center around the global competition for founders and young companies working in the field of the selected theme. 50 of these startups will be given the chance to present themselves on an international stage with a booth in the CODE_n hall at CeBIT 2015 (March 16-20, 2015 at the trade show grounds in Hanover). The opportunities that open up to startups by participating in CODE_n will be revealed at the press conference by five young entrepreneurs who previously participated in the contest. Under the banner “When startups grow up,” they will talk about their own experience before, during and after the contest. Representatives from Changers.com, GreenClouds, Sablono, Tado and Viewsy will be in attendance. More…