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: WearHealth from Germany

wearhealth_logoThe wearables market is set to grow exponentially and has the potential to transform how healthcare services are provided. Wearable devices will soon generate large volumes of medical grade data, but without analysis and insight from health experts, they won’t reach their full potential. That is why our CODE_n CONTEST finalist WearHealth is on a mission to enable personalized mobile preventive health care by bringing together medical wearable technology, artificial intelligence, and health experts. Co-founder and CEO Esteban Bayro Kaiser tells us how this can be achieved:

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

Esteban: WearHealth is the AI-driven platform that learns from health experts and data from wearables to empower Personal Health Assistance.

We are a research spin-off from the Institute for Artificial Intelligence at the University Bremen and have years of experience in dealing with data from wearables and machine learning. Due to the increasing shortage in global health workforce and avoidable healthcare costs that are attributed to non-adherence, there is a high demand for new solutions in the area of mobile health. At WearHealth we are building a context-aware personal health assistant (PHA) that is able to learn from health experts and data from wearables.

The first version of the PHA is able to recognize gestures such as pill-intake, eating and smoking with the help of commercially available wearables to support patients with medication adherence. We are working together with our customers the re- and health insurances and pharmaceutical industry to bring this solution to the market. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

How to successfully incubate startups – a guide for corporations hungry for innovation

Yes, we know the road to innovation can be tough. But it’s more important than ever to rescue businesses and bring them safely to the path of digital transformation. There sure are several ways to reach this goal. But examples of money pouring into R&D that left the companies empty-handed show that business incubation of startups is the better way for corporations to develop new technology and business solutions. Startups have the disruptive power and lateral thinking ability that are often missing in established companies. And they already come with the advanced, game-changing innovation that might be the solution to your problems! But in order to achieve a fruitful co-operation, a fertile ground is necessary. So better read on and learn how to successfully incubate startups in our quick guide for incubators!

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More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

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

logoOur CODE_n CONTEST Finalist CRiskCo revolutionizes the credit approval process and helps loan providers with key challenges such as financial data acquisition, response time reduction and better risk assessment. The startup’s infrastructure connects to accounting systems in a one-click process, collects relevant data, standardizes it, and sends it to the loan provider in seconds. CEO Erez Saf told us some more details about his FinTech company!

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

Erez: CRiskCo is disrupting the credit information business, a field ruled by giants such as D&B and Experian, which lack the tools and data needed to predict or manage credit portfolios. We help businesses reduce bad debt and make good credit decisions by providing credit risk information, by predicting future defaults and by assessing risks of current and potential customers. CRiskCo’s revolutionary approach includes the use of unique Artificial Intelligence algorithms, Big Data models and a cloud based technology. CRiskCo’s goal is to enable trust between businesses worldwide and enable new credit solutions to address SMB’s needs.

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In my former role as CTO for a SAP Partner and an SME consultant, I had developed ad hock solutions for businesses to manage and control their credit customers’ portfolios. I personally witnessed businesses deal with dozens of poor clients, who defaulted or displayed sporadic payment behavior. A couple of years later as the CIO of eLoan.co.il, a P2P lending platform, I was exposed to some great tools and innovative ideas for managing individual’s credit portfolios, which I noticed that the SME community lacked. This is what drove me to start CRiskCo. More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: UrbanAlps from Switzerland

urbanalps_logoCODE_n CONTEST Finalist UrbanAlps is a high-tech startup based in Switzerland that is reinventing the mechanical key with 3D printing. The young company is a constellation of innovation specialists with a focus on laser processes, plus a group of remarkable advisors ranging from former members of the executive team at ASSA ABLOY to serial entrepreneurs (a-connect) and directors at McKinsey & Co. For this interview we talked to Managing Director Alejandro Ojeda. Have a quick read to find out more about the Photonics finalist:

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

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Alejandro: UrbanAlps is about Swiss security products for the city. We bring the Stealth Key: the affordable house key that is safe against 3D copy.

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

Alejandro: To put it in a nutshell: We take a centuries old industry of traditional hole drilling to a world of 3D metal printing.

You’re one of the 13 finalists in the Photonics contest cluster. Which challenges do you think young companies have to face in this sector? How do you handle these challenges?

Alejandro: My personal feeling is that hardware startups are strongly handicapped compared to ICT or medTech startups for relevant reasons (i.e.: deployment speed of products…). We tackle that challenge by having a scalable strategy for a huge market: mechanical keys.

Your solution seems to solve a lot of problems. Are there already plans for a market entry of your product? More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: Quantum Base from the UK

qb_logoMeet another one of our CODE_n CONTEST HealthTech Finalists: Quantum Base designs, develops, and delivers quantum security solutions, which are based on quantum mechanics rather than mathematical complexity. This is the only proven way to save digital information securely. The British startup was spun out from Lancaster University and provides solutions that are 100% secure and guaranteed by the laws of physics. Dr Robert Young, Co-Founder of Quantum Base, took the time to tell us all you need to know about his startup!

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

Robert: At the core of our organizational philosophy is a fundamental belief that product, data security and integrity is a sensible and basic human right, indeed a requirement, in all modern-day societies.

The digitized, connected societies we inhabit are driven by a dependency on ever-increasing security requirements, but how can you depend on anything if you can’t trust it? At Quantum Base our core concern is guaranteeing 100% product security, authenticity or data integrity. So whether we’re talking about a pill to a painting, to a prize-winning horse; or a form of packaging or even a bit of data on a network or in free space, we use the laws of quantum physics to create simple, small, practical and cheap quantum security solutions that are 100% provably secure. It is this level of unbreakable security which we can deliver, that bridges the current, and ever-increasing gap in security between the good guys and the bad guys.

How did we make this happen? Well, the idea was to smash together a world leading scientist, two sharp technologists, and a really average entrepreneur. Then add in some super smart people, and stick them all in the mixer together. We said, if we create an environment of trust, mutual respect, and driven by a real need to dramatically and urgently disrupt the way things are done in the security space, we’ll find a better, smarter way of thinking about the security and integrity of literally everything we work, use, buy consume, communicate, and play with.

Finally, we encourage them all to make beautiful music together, you know, the stuff that gets you just there, in the heart; the stuff that moves you, shakes you; makes you want to cry, gets you pumped, and bang, literally! …the result is Quantum Base.

So, in maybe less romantic terms, it’s two normal guys (friends), The Royal Society (arguably the greatest scientist in the world), world-leading scientists at a world leading institution, and business leaders and visionary’s. All trying to change the way the world views or “does” security in many different ways. It’s about absolutely believing that you can, and have to, create small, cheap, and practical products or solutions; quantum security solutions so elegantly simple, that anyone can use them, so anyone can have the security we feel is their right. So here at Quantum Base that’s what we’re doing, we’re building it, and we hope that the people will come, see our vision, and help us build our 100% provable and unbreakable security products, guaranteed by the laws of physics. For us building provable trust and security serves as the building block for everything else.

Quantum_Base_Team_pic

The Quantum Base Team

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

Robert: What’s so fundamentally different is our Optical Q-ID or Q PUF (Quantum physically unclonable function) uses new two-dimensional materials (e.g. graphene like sheets) that can be read with a smart phone and cheap filter. The devices are secure to the atomic scale; as secure as it’s possible to build, and the best bit – they can be mass-produced to ensure they are amazingly cheap. So, in terms of authentication for instance, you can tag any product or any packaging whatsoever, because the devices are literally miniscule (microscopic, e.g. a few thousand atoms in size).
As each one has its own unique ID, and can literally be placed on any surface, of any thing, it means you can address each one directly in real time, using Internet or new media technologies with a remote database.
More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Meet our CODE_n CONTEST Finalists 2016: evopark from Germany

evopark_logoOur CODE_n CONTEST finalist evopark is the market leader in digital off-street parking in Germany. Their app allows you to easily find off-street parking locations and check real-time availability. Parking lot tickets become obsolete as you can enter and exit lots and garages by opening barriers automatically using RFID technology (evotag). The young company, selected for the Connected Mobility cluster, also works with exclusive retail partners to offer discounts on parking fees. We talked to Sven Lackinger (Business Development) about his startup:

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

Sven: My founder colleague Max had the ground-breaking idea to evopark. On holidays in France, he was annoyed by waiting at toll stations although he just had to pay a few coins. At the same time other drivers passed the barriers quickly by holding up a card. He remembered a similar situation in German parking garages and wondered whether there could be a solution to simplify the process. Back in Germany, we refined the idea together with our fellow students Tobias and Marik. In 2014 we founded evopark.

The leading team: Maximilian Messing (Product & IT), Marik Hermann (Sales), Tobias Weiper (Marketing) and Sven Lackinger (Business Development)

The leading team: Maximilian Messing (Product & IT), Marik Hermann (Sales), Tobias Weiper (Marketing) und Sven Lackinger (Business Development)

About 30% of all inner-city traffic results from drivers looking for a parking spot. At the same time, however, most parking garages still have unused capacity even on busy days. A major potential which evopark tackles by offering an innovative parking service. The evopark parking card replaces the usual paper ticket. No more queuing at the pay station. No more looking for change. Parking with evopark is significantly easier and more convenient. Best yet: evopark is completely free of surcharge for drivers. Customers only pay the regular parking fees. The well-proven long range UHF RFID technology on our parking card enables convenient and highly reliable entry and exit. Barriers automatically identify the
integrated chip. The system works completely seamless.

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

Sven: The German parking market is fragmented and characterized by a deeply ingrained traditional thinking. It was a hard way to convince parking operators to confide in an innovative product in the first place. But we believed in the success of our concept, so that we insisted and persistently pursued our goal – with success! Being first in the market, we offer a fully integrated solution suitable for all common parking management systems. An attractive product and a sustainable business model provide benefits for all stakeholders. We believe, that is the only way a digital product can generate added value for the industry in the long-term. Drivers park more easily and comfortably. Parking garages are getting more attractive, frequencies increase. The solution to credit customers’ parking fees supports local retailers. A concept, which clearly pays off. Last but not least, again being first in the market, we gained the automobile manufacturer Porsche as investor: Its newly founded subsidiary, the Porsche Digital GmbH invested a seven-digit figure in evopark. More…