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

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…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: Geospin from Germany

gs_logoFrom data editing and cleansing to data analysis and prediction – our CODE_n CONTEST finalist Geospin helps to exploit the full potential of geospatial data. No more need to rely on rough estimates and costly trial-and-error approaches. Selected for our Connected Mobility cluster, Geospin enables companies to profit from their own digital resources by enriching enterprise data with external sources to find the perfect locations for their service. Executive partner Dr. Sebastian Wagner answered all our questions:

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

Sebastian: Four of the five founders of Geospin have worked for the Chair of Information Systems at the University of Freiburg. Over the course of several research projects, we began to notice the disruptive potential of geospatial data analytics – and how little it is used in most companies. We decided to “fill the gap” and put our research experience into practice. That’s how Geospin was born.

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

Sebastian: About 90% of all in-house data has a spatial component. However, many companies still lack the technical expertise to gain insights from their data. Our approach helps to exploit its full potential, complementing the internal data with relevant geospatial data sets from external sources. Using cutting-edge algorithms based on novel data analytics and machine learning techniques, we support our customers with data processing, analysis and predictive analytics. For all companies, a central business goal is to offer its services at the right time and at the right place. Your data knows where and when; and Geospin will figure it out for you! More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: creditshelf from Germany

cs_logocreditshelf is an online marketplace bringing together SMEs and professional investors, providing unsecured loans ranging from €100k to €2.5m with a runtime of 1-12 months. Based in Frankfurt, the CODE_n CONTEST Finalist makes sure that each accepted loan project goes through a detailed risk analysis before it is uploaded for a blind bidding process. We talked to CSO Daniel Bartsch (PhD) about his company: FinTechs, he says, naturally compete with banks – but he also tells us why this is not at all creditshelf’s goal.

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

Daniel: In times of low interest rates and tighter regulation banks do increasingly refrain from serving financing needs of small and medium sized companies. Stepping into this gap creditshelf is offering short-term working capital loans to SMEs, online via a lending platform connecting borrowers directly to our network of professional investors. Using cutting edge peer-to-peer technology we make available to our investors a new asset class that was previously reserved for banks, whilst we provide quick and easy funding to SMEs at attractive rates.

The creditshelf team at the "Frankfurter Gründerpreis" winning second place as best FinTech.

The creditshelf team at the “Frankfurter Gründerpreis” winning second place as best FinTech.

The idea was born following the financial crisis. The creditshelf founder team consists of senior banking and financial services professionals. First hand in our day to day banking businesses we realized that banks are not serving the financial needs of SMEs like they did before the banking crisis. In our heads came up different models how to fill this gap. We felt it was the right time for the introduction of a disruptive business model in corporate financial services. As a consequence we founded creditshelf late 2014, and quit our banking jobs. Fast forward 18 months, we are sitting in our small new office in Frankfurt am Main, with a team comprising 20 people across sales, risk management and IT, serving SME clients. To date, we have originated a significant double-digit million EUR amount of loans to these “Mittelstand” companies that mark the backbone of the German economy. More…