People behind Swiss Innovation
The Inno-Swiss platform is dedicated to boost
Swiss innovation and the people behind

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    Salvador Garcia Zalduegui - iRewind

    Unique video memories on the spot, on your mobile.

    Mo. 28.07.2014, 12:00

    "No entrepreneur can ignore Asia anymore, especially at a time when China and other countries' economic growth shift to an innovation-driven model. venture leaders China will guarantee that the startups will learn how to make the best of this fast moving region,” Pascal Marmier, Swissnex China CEO. In our video the venture leader IREWIND talks about their plans in China....Read more

    IREWIND is an integrated tech solution that allows sport enthusiasts and entertainment consumers to capture their experiences. It provides them with multi angle movies directly on their mobile devices. iRewind turnkey hardware and software solution can be installed on any field and start generating revenue. iRewind has the potential to bring a tonus to the public video market similar to what Polaroid did to the photo industry.

    Have a look to the video presentation :


     

    Additional Links
    Check out iRewind's profile!
    More about venture leaders China

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    Michael Felber, founder of Cobalytics

    "In the beginning it is important to get and extract the essential information of your business case"

    Mo. 21.07.2014, 09:00

    We asked 10 questions to one of the latest winners of the second stage of venture kick (20'000.-) : Michael Felber of Cobalytics, a startup aiming at introducing a multiplex point-of-care testing platform for fire smoke toxins to make one decision less in an emergency situation: Knowing whom and how to treat. ...Read more

    1.    How and why did you launch your startup?
    The fundamental research for the sensing technology we are using, was established in the research group where we are doing our PhD. The inventor of this technology approached us with regard to commercialization. From the very first moment we were inspired by the idea of transferring a technology into a marketable product that fulfills the requirements of the customers. That is why we started this endeavor in October 2013.

    2.    What is the meaning of your company name?
    Our key compound contains the element Cobalt, so we simply merged the words Cobalt and Analytics which lead to Cobalytics.

    3.    What stage of its development is your startup today? What are the next steps?
    Currently we are miniaturizing the sensing technology in order to end up with a fully automated device which requires only a drop of blood from a finger prick. Afterwards we plan to develop the final product in cooperation with a production partner and then start the regulatory approval process.

    4.    How is your startup positioned regards to your competitors (on the market)?
    So far there is no quicktest available to determine the concentration of fire smoke toxins in blood, especially not for the most toxic component: cyanide. Even though we do not expect competition on the short run, time to market is a crucial factor because various research groups are working on this topic. A strong IP on the miniaturized technology and in the future reliable industrial partners should further strengthen our competitive advantage over competitors.

    5.    Why did you apply for venture kick?
    When we started this project, we immediately participated at the venturelab course. It was there, we heard for the first time about venture kick. To us it sounded like a unique opportunity to get access to first funds that are necessary to exploit the marketability and market potential of the technology/idea.

    6.    Explain how the venture kick program helped you?
    The venture kick program helped in various aspects. One of these aspects was the funding of essential business activities, such as e.g. visiting potential customers and production partners. Moreover, the kickers camp, as part of venture kick, is a great opportunity to uncover critical issues which have to be tackled in the business development. It is also important to mention that the people involved with venture kick have a large network which can be very helpful.

    7.    How did you convince the jury?
    We think we convinced the jury with the fact that we established a clearly defined case: We showed how our business has evolved, what specific advances we have made and how we plan to address problems in the future. Apart from this we gave a solid presentation and were able to answer the Q&A section proficiently.

    8.    What kind of advice would you give to another young entrepreneur?
    In the beginning it is important to get and extract the essential information of your business case: What is your unique selling proposition? Where does your product address a real customer problem? You have to build a crystal clear business case around this information and need to define a strategy which can be realistically pursued. This in combination with the right people on board (maybe one of the most important points) is definitely a good starting point.

    9.    Why would you recommend the venture kick program to other startups?
    Venture kick provides initial funding, a great network and longstanding experience in the Swiss startup scene. The application to this program, which is not a contest in its actual meaning, is easy and quite rewarding since you have a 50% chance of winning at each of the three stages.

    10.  What do you think is the impact of the venture kick program on the Swiss startup industry?
    The venture kick program has an immense impact on the Swiss startup industry which is mirrored in the fact that almost all startups in Switzerland are participating in this program. The network of venture kick connects a variety of very successful and yet to be successful Swiss startups amongst each other. This guarantees for an active exchange of knowledge and improves the overall quality of Swiss startups.
     

    Additional Links
    Apply to venturelab courses here !
    More information on Cobalytics
    Check out the last two winners of venture kick stage 2!

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    Arnaud Bertrand and his wife, Junjun.

    A new CEO for HouseTrip !

    Fr. 18.07.2014, 14:00

    HouseTrip, one of the world’s largest holiday home marketplace, announced that George Hadjigeorgiou has been named Chief Executive Officer. Hadjigeorgiou was previously COO of the company and succeeds Arnaud Bertrand, venture kick alumni, who co-founded HouseTrip in 2009 with wife Junjun. Bertrand will remain focused on HouseTrip in his day-to-day role as President of the company....Read more

    Since joining HouseTrip in early 2012, Hadjigeorgiou has overseen all operations and played a defining role in developing and executing the company’s strategy to address the accelerating demand for HouseTrip. “Working closely with Arnaud and the team over the past 2 years has exceeded all my expectations coming into the company” said Hadjigeorgiou. “This is a truly exciting time for HouseTrip and like everyone involved with this company, I’m obsessively passionate about it and very excited by the opportunity ahead of us.”

    “HouseTrip was founded on the conviction that, with the right products and user experience, we could play a major role in ensuring that homes become travellers’ most popular accommodation choice” said Arnaud Bertrand.  “Over the past 2 years, George has exceptional job leading the company and I look forward to continuing the work that we have begun together.”

    Michael Van Swaaij, Chairman of the Board of HouseTrip and former CEO of Skype commented: “It is exceedingly rare to see a duo of leaders function as well as Arnaud and George. From a Board perspective, we’ve seen them execute beautifully together to date and we’re very excited by this change as we think it puts each Arnaud and George in roles perfectly suited to their respective strengths.”

    Since its launch in 2010 London-based HouseTrip has experienced explosive growth and now has more than 320,000 homes available in over 20,000 destinations across the world, with over seven million nights booked to date.  Uniquely backed by Europe’s three largest venture capitalist firms –Index Ventures, Balderton Capital and Accel Partners – the company was listed in the Top 50 Travel Websites by The Times in 2013 and in 2014 was named one of the top 5 fastest growing technology companies in the UK in 2014 by The Next Web.

    As an internationally recognised technologist and business leader, Hadjigeorgiou brings more than 15 years of consumer web experience and management to the position. Before joining HouseTrip Hadjigeorgiou was the founder and CEO of GoldenGroup, the leading flash-sales company in Southeastern Europe. He had previously held key leadership roles at Yahoo!, most recently serving as General Manager of Communication and Community Products in Europe. Hadjigeorgiou has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and Economics from Tuft University and a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
     

    Additional Links
    Check out the interview and tips of Arnaud Bertrand! (FR)
    More about HouseTrip

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    Eric Tremblay from Composyt Light Labs

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    Andreas Guggenbühl from Selfnation

    Clink glasses for a new Google Glasses competitor and a pair of jeans kicked by 130.000 CHF

    Mo. 14.07.2014, 11:00

    Composyt Light Labs and Selfnation, spin-offs from EPFL and ETH Zurich starting a new era of smart glasses and jeans, raised CHF 130.000 by winning the third and last round of venture kick....Read more

    2013 was the year of wearable computing: Smart Glasses and Watches began to dress us. In Switzerland the EPFL spin-off Composyt Light Labs with their wearable display technology for see-through augmented reality, have a good chance to swim with the big fishes in the next years.
     
    Smart and stylish: EPFL spin-off created a new generation of smart glasses
    You might know the augmented reality eyewear from Google, the Google Glasses, but what Mickaël Guillaumée and Eric Tremblay created reaches the next level. They developed smart glasses which provide more than a 40degree field of view in the smallest possible form. Clunky and obtrusive display technologies are a huge obstacle. The ultra-compact wearable display platform provides a new generation of aesthetic smart glasses. But winner Eric Tremblay knows, that a great product is not enough: “venture kick has really helped us to get out of the lab to validate and find traction for our technology. Our goal is now to close a key strategic partnership and the final kick will support us to reach that goal.” We are thrilled to observe who is developing further and faster in the field of the augmented reality eyewear: the big players or the small startup from Lausanne.
     
    The perfect pair of jeans? Just a click away
    On average, women try 20 pair of jeans until they finally buy one. Selfnation, a team of fashion designers and engineers, solves this problem and makes the jeans shopper’s life much easier. The ETH spin-off offers perfectly fitting jeans with online 3D visualization technologies and highly automated production processes. Selfnations own software creates a 3D model from the body measurements which the customer has to enter on their website. At the end the animation looks like as you would stand in front of a mirror at a fashion store. 14 days later the jeans with sustainable Italian denim will be sent to the customer.“The mental and strategic support helped us even more than the monetary grant. Especially the feedbacks and motivative advises by the venture kick coaches and the jury pushed us to a next level.” said Andreas Guggenbühl after his success.

    Additional Links
    More about Composyt Light Labs
    More about Selfnation
    Want to get the kick?

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    More than 100 start-ups entered this year's Swisscom StartUp Challenge.

    Swisscom StartUp Challenge 2014: start-ups from French-speaking Switzerland set the tone

    Do. 10.07.2014, 11:00

    More than 100 start-ups entered this year's Swisscom StartUp Challenge. We have now selected the ten finalists, who want to conquer the global market with their innovative solutions. One thing stands out: start-ups from French-speaking Switzerland are outshining their German-speaking counterparts. ...Read more

    If the branded jeans you see while on holiday seem exceptionally cheap, it's probably because they are fake. To enable holidaymakers to spot fraudulent offers at first glance, the start-up "ScanTrust SA" has developed a mobile application that makes it simple to check whether or not a product is genuine. This innovative business idea won the new company enough plaudits to take it straight through to the final of the Swisscom StartUp Challenge.

    More than 100 start-ups from the fields of ICT, media and cleantech entered this year's StartUp Challenge; of these, ten impressed the jury and thus got closer to their objective, Silicon Valley, to which Swisscom will be inviting five winners to participate in a business acceleration programme. The initiator of the challenge and head of the SME division at Swisscom, Roger Wüthrich-Hasenböhler, is very happy with this year's entrants: "The quality is high and the business models are impressive. This proves once again that Switzerland has people with excellent skills and an enormous entrepreneurial spirit."

    Start-ups from French-speaking Switzerland more likely to excel
    This year it has been mainly start-ups from French-speaking Switzerland that have stood out. Eight of the ten finalists come from the French-speaking part of the country, namely Hoosh Technology SA, Geosatis SA, ActLight SA, ScanTrust SA, CashSentinel SA, Goodwall, eSMART Technologies Sàrl and VisioSafe SA. This also reflects developments in the national start-up sector: "While for many years everything focused around Zurich, a second start-up hotspot has developed in Lausanne and is now bearing fruit," Roger Wüthrich-Hasenböhler explains.

    StartUp Challenge: what are the next steps?
    Together with its partner, Venturelab, Swisscom has invited the finalists to make a decisive pitch on 14 August, where an expert jury will rigorously examine the ten finalists and then select five winners. The victors will be off to Silicon Valley to build contacts with international partners and experienced investors and perfect their own business models in collaboration with mentors. The audience prize, which will be awarded to the start-up that gains the most public votes, will also be presented at the pitch. Voting will take place from the end of July at www.swisscom.ch/challenge.

    Swisscom has supported young Swiss entrepreneurs for many years, for example via partnerships with regional sponsoring institutions and the online platform www.swisscom.ch/startup. In addition, Swisscom supports innovative start-ups through an early stage fund worth over CHF 10 million and expands the transfer of knowledge to young entrepreneurs.

    Additional Links
    You can find brief portraits of the finalists here.

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    Dr. Elodie Dahan and Dr. Anna Laromaine / OsmoBlue

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    Nadja Mrosek, COO of Glycemicon

    CHF 300,000 seed capital for venture kick alumni

    Mo. 07.07.2014, 14:00

    Five young entrepreneurs and businesswomen, including three venture kick and venturelab alumni (Calcisco, Mimedis and Geosatis), each got 100,000 francs at the W.A. de Vigier Prize. In addition to this, Dr. Pascale Vonmont, vice-director of the Gebert Rüf Foundation and venture kick initiator, got the "Supporter of the Year 2014" award. We also could meet with two nominees OsmoBlue and Glycemicon....Read more

    Since 1989, the W. A. de Vigier Foundation supports five startups every year with CHF 100'000. This year too, five winners and five nominees were selected out of about 250 applicants. The ten startups showed their skills during short presentations that were accompanied by funny comics. Above all, medical projects that could revolutionize the work of doctors made it into the final.
     
    Honoured initiator of venture kick
    Dr. Pascale Vonmont, vice-director of Gebert Rüf Foundation, got awarded the title of "Supporter of the Year 2014". After 15 years in business, everyday work is still a privilege and a fascinating exercise to Mrs Vonmont. Every day, three to four innovative ideas are proposed to her; Switzerland has an enormous potential for entrepreneurship.The strategy of the Gebert Rüf Foundation is based on reported gaps, brownfield opportunities and potentials.The foundation has been leader in establishing the "Social Entrepreneurship" program and has been involved for two years in "Cultural Entrepreneurship". New potentials can arise in Scientific Entrepreneurship too: the venture leaders program was initiated by the Foundation in 1999. It is now well established and for the first time it has made a step towards Asia. venture leaders China allows ten selected start-ups from Switzerland to dive into the business world of Beijing and Shanghai. "If our startups gain a foothold in Asia, this will have an impact on development programs in Switzerland. The enormous cultural differences require specific business models. The Gebert Rüf Foundation can, at least, make a contribution here," said Pascale Vonmont.

    A One Way Ticket to Beijing
    The exceptional entrepreneur André Lüthi was invited as guest speaker. Ever since the 80s, he has gotten to know Beijing. He bought a one-way ticket to China at the SBB counter in Berne, which was unusual for that time, and started a success story with Globetrotter. Today the Globetrotter Group generates sales of CHF 241 million and is considered the largest independent travel provider in Switzerland.

    Fight against diabetes, and energy for every home in Basel
    After the event, guests were able to talk to the nominees and winners in person. The researchers of OsmoBlue, who are dedicated to new energy solutions and Glycemicon whose researchers fight against diabetes, spoke with us about their future plans and their experience with the venture kick program. "venture kick has helped us a lot in terms of taking the first steps to a successful startup. Now, we are nominees at the de Vigier Award and plan the clinical development of our product." said Nadja Mrosek, COO of Glycemicon. Dr. Anna Romaine of OsmoBlue added enthusiastically: "We first won venture kick and got a tremendous chance to increase the visibility of our project, and to improve our business model and our technology. Moreover, venture kick helped us to complete a prototype and start a pilot project in the industry. And now we are nominees of the de Vigier Awards."

    Additional Links
    Learn more on W.A. de Vigier Prize
    Get your kick here !

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    Sébastien Flury, CEO from Coteries and blogger from Startupolic

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    The venture leaders team

    The best learnings from the venture leaders: “Awesome, cool, amazing don’t have any single meaning in the mouth of Americans”

    Di. 01.07.2014, 14:00

    Sébastien Flury, Co-founder & CEO from Coteries had the chance to be selected as a venture leader 2014. He came back from the trip to Boston and New York and thought that what they have learnt or experienced could be profitable to everybody. ...Read more

    So here are the best learnings from Sébastien: For the first time, the venture leaders team was not travelling “only” to Boston. We’ve spent 7.5 days there and 2.5 in NYC. The experience is simply unique. It sometimes looks like a school trip, in the sense that venturelab and swissnex Boston organized everything. We didn’t need to bother with hostel, program, taxi, training, etc.

    During these 10 days, I was surrounded by 19 of the brightest current Swiss entrepreneurs (deliberately not mentioning our amazing mentors/guides). This simple fact as not being alone doing a business trip was already something new for me (most of time, I’m alone in London or at various business conferences)! It also makes you realize that other entrepreneurs face more or less the same challenges, UPs and DOWNs (hopes, frustrations, successes) than you. But we all keep going! And even if you’re convinced that your innovation will change your industry, you can only feel very humble when you’re discovering entrepreneurs who develop hardcore science (for instance, making paralyzed people walk again or extracting drugs from body of people who had an overdose).

    What about the American culture
    The program is probably one of the best ways to discover the US mentality. It’s really different from the Swiss philosophy of doing business. The simple fact that everything is bigger and that everything is going much faster already backs this assumption. You feel energized by it, as well as really humble. Americans don’t seem to care that much of the potential negative result, they just try. And are excessively enthusiastic about everything: awesome, cool, amazing don’t have any single meaning in the mouth of Americans. That’s just polite! In Switzerland, you wouldn’t use these words if you don’t mean it. So you need to understand this as quickly as possible to try to understand the hotness of a lead (either customers or investors). “Let’s try this” is a much better measure of interest! We’ve also heard some demystification of the US market as an Eldorado for startups: did you know that only 3% of entrepreneurs looking for angel or venture capital investments successfully close their financing round? In this percentage, all startups who are not actively looking for funding are not taken into account. It is estimated that around 750 startup closed their financing round last year, on a total of 3M startups. Our trainer told us (without joking) that you have a higher likelihood of getting rich with lottery!

    Visit of Tumblr in New York
    One of the highlight for me was the visit of Tumblr in NYC. Yes, Tumblr, the solution I’m using since I started blogging. We had one hour with Lindsey, the HR manager who experienced and managed the massive growth of Tumblr (growing from 8 to 250+ people in less than 3 years). Impressive. They seem to be able to stick with their culture during this hyper growth, which can be summarized with these 3 points: Fuck yeah,Tumbler, Weird. We’ve also met some Swiss entrepreneurs in NYC and in Boston, like Jo von Rickenbach who built a pharma company (Parexel) 32 years ago and grew it up to more than 14’000 employees now. My colleague Borislava Palanchova (but call her Bori!), from Audiolize, wrote down this quote, presented by Jo as applicable to new ideas, too: "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." by Arthur Schopenhauer

    Training at Babson College in Boston
    We had the chance of getting training at the famous Babson College, with two teachers (Les and Ed) who did several startups in their career. We had a lot of real-life business cases, even with the chance of being able to have a video chat with the entrepreneurs who founded these companies. The three key learning’s of this training seem quite simple and obvious: Focus on the customer, Everything is about survival (when you do a startup), Lower the perception of risk.

    The venture leaders program is an incredible personal development trip, more than a pure business development trip. It is really valuable to every Swiss entrepreneur who’d like to enter the US market. I’ve asked Bori (see above) what she thought about the journey: Key learning: "The trip confirmed my belief that there are millions of ways to achieve your goals, and there is no "success recipe", which is the general attitude in Europe." Feelings: "Energy boost, freedom from status quo and clichés, more determination than ever! Amazing experience which I was very happy to share with the other entrepreneurs of the venture leaders 2014 team".

    And the final word is for Andreas Guggenbühl, of Selfnation, while climbing The Empire State Building in New York: "Hey Beat, did you see this picture? That’s startup speed!" (the 381m high building was built in less than 11 months!).

    Additional Links
    Check out the original article from Sébastien on his blog
    Want to be part of the Swiss National Startup Team? Apply now for 2015
    Want to know more about the "brightest current Swiss entrepreneurs"?
    Have a look at Coteries

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    Miguel Branco from RAW

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    The founders from Adaptricity: Andreas Ulbig and Stephan Koch

    »venture kick is a great first instrument if you’re serious about a startup«

    Mi. 25.06.2014, 12:00

    RAW and Adaptricity convinced the venture kick jury in the second round with sovereignty and preparing now for the final of venture kick. We spoke to Miguel from RAW who just finished the venture challenge course at EPFL and developed a database system that helps businesses get their facts right....Read more

    Miguel, what do you offer with your startup RAW?
    »RAW is a platform for data analysis. It’s the place where data scientists come together online to analyze data.«
     
    What distinguishes your database system from others?
    »RAW is far more than a classical database system. In fact, as database researchers, we started RAW as a research project precisely due to our frustration with existing systems. Databases do one thing well: they answer queries – questions to the data – very efficiently. But they are poorly suited to handle real world “dirty” data; they don’t allow you to clean and transform data seamlessly or to experiment with your data. Databases also do a poor job at managing the code that users write to analyze data and they do not allow you to collaborate with your colleagues throughout these processes. RAW fixes all this. We start from technology straight out of research – on data virtualization – and build a platform for data analysis that is far more complete than anything out there. RAW is in its own category.«
     
    Why did you apply for venture kick?
    »venture kick has a comprehensible, straightforward funding model. It gives us the resources to prototype and pivot – which is crucial early on, plus the deadlines and the feedback that comes with deadlines, reports and presentations. Overall, venture kick really is a great first instrument if you’re serious about a startup.«
     
    Which milestones could you already achive?
    »We had technology we thought – and others agreed – was truly impressive, but we were not sure what product to make out of it: where the markets actually were, who the customers were, etc. As a technical person, it’s amazing how often we confuse customers, users, product and technology, as if they were all the same. venture kick gave us the resources to start finding these things out. We could work on alternative products/business models, try them out with customers, iterate and go from there. And the best part is that venture kick is really light on bureaucracy, so it was all just useful work.«
     
    What are your next steps?
    »We’ll continue product discovery and customer development. We have some promising early contacts with well-establish industries in Switzerland. We will continue developing (and understanding!) the product along with our customers, until we sort out the whole picture end-to-end, from technology to business model.«

    The second winner of venture kick stage 2
    Adaptricity is a spin-off company of the Power Systems Laboratory at ETH Zurich who took part at the venture challenge courses 2010.
    The team of Adaptricity develops innovative software tools for the simulation, optimization, and control of electric power systems. Their goal is to build great products that facilitate the transition towards high renewable energy shares and smart electricity grids during the years and decades to come.

    Have a look at their funny video how they want to make power systems intelligent.

    Additional Links
    Get kicked by venture kick
    You have an innovative business idea? Then venture challenge is your chance
    More about Adaptricity
    More about RAW

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    4 promising startups receive their first kick !

    Mi. 25.06.2014, 09:00

    Eight projects were selected and had the opportunity to present their business ideas in front of a jury of successful entrepreneurs and investors. CellSpring, milKit, Motiv.com and Mikro Trees got the first stage kick and won CHF 10’000 of pre-seed capital. In the next stage they have the chance to get CHF 20'000....Read more

    Cellspring
    CellSpring, founded by Chrisopher Millan from ETH Zürich, will offer 3-Dimensional Cell Culture solutions for high-throughput creation of functional microtissues.  Utilizing a pending patented technology, the products will shorten the time required to create 3D microtissues compared to other methods, and increase the accuracy of in vitro tests used in early stage drug discovery.

    milKit

    Actually employed at ETH Zürich and passionate about entrepreneurship, Pius Kobler founded milKit, a product that makes measuring the remaining sealant in a tubeless bike tire and refilling it easy and safe.

    Motiv.com

    Motiv.com, a web-based platform launched by Jean Hennebert,  helps organisations to increase their efficiency through the understanding and the management of staff motivation.  It is innovative as it monitors in real-time the level of staff motivation, based on the collection and treatment of internal as well as external information and automatically suggests improvement measures to the management or the HR department.

    MIKRO TREES
    MIKRO TREES brings the best of biodiversity conservation, finance, technology, social entrepreneurship and community building into the first global movement fighting deforestation of tropical forests and other environmental destructions. Supporting each other through a one-stop web / mobile platform for people who want to do good, day after day, by protecting the environment, helps saving animal species. This is the goal of Luca Baldassarre and Jonathan Rascol, co-founders of MIKRO TREES.

    Additional Links
    Get your kick here !

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    L.E.S.S.: Dr. Simon Rivier (CTO), Dr. Yann Tissot (CEO)

    “My strategy was just to talk with passion and coherence”: Interview with L.E.S.S. CEO Yann Tissot

    Mi. 18.06.2014, 09:00

    The jury has decided: out of 141 business plans submitted, the venture leader and venture kick winner L.E.S.S. from EPFL won the »venture» 2014 award! Above all 9 from 10 finalists were venture kick and venturelab alumni. Now we wanted to know from Yann Tissot, co-founder and CEO from L.E.S.S. how they prepare their pitch and what are their plans in China, because they will fly with the venture leaders to this rapidly growing country in September....Read more

    Yann, L.E.S.S. won the venture 2014 award. How it feels like?
    “Good.”
     
    What was the hardest part of developing your pitch?
    “I guess the challenge was two-fold. First we needed to make our complicated technology and product easy to understand without making it simple and common. Today everybody is using the word 'revolutionary', such that it loses its meaning. We took the challenge not to use it, but still made the message revolutionary, indeed.
    Second we hit a fabulously big and difficult market and for this aspect our only chance to get credibility was to mention the continuous feedbacks of our customers. We actually started building the pitch around these feedbacks rather that presenting a case with potential interest. By chance and choice we talked with many potential customers around the world at a very early stage such that the pitch was pretty coherent at the end.”
     
    Did you have a pitch strategy?
    “My strategy was just to talk with passion and coherence. For me pitching is to try to inspire the audience. And you can only do this if you are strongly convinced and passionate about your case.”
     
    You are part from this year`s venture leaders China. Why did you decide to begin to explore China and take this trip?
    "We are already selling products in the market of industrial vision and China, as the "workshop of the world", is huge in this market. It is important for us to understand early how to address this market from the cultural and strategy point of view. We already entered the Japanese market and we had to rapidly understand the different codes and business culture before being able to sell products inland. We believe this trip can give us keys in making successful our future market entry in China. In addition, a part of the supply chain of our target market of LCD backlighting is in China and we want to network early in this area as well to close the loop of the supply chain of our customers."
     
    What are the next steps for your growth into China?
    "We plan a market entry in China in Q2'15 with products in high volume. We hope we might speed it up thanks to the participation in the venture leader program."
     
    You won venture kick 2012. How the program helped you?
    "In this business you have to be extremely fast. Because of this, we needed as much money as possible, as fast as possible, in order to be able to stay in the game. venture kick trusted us at the very early stage, at that time we didn’t have a lot of concrete results to show, it has just been incredible support."

    About L.E.S.S.
    Designing flexible, low-power consumption and colorful displays comes within reach thanks to the innovative lighting technology developed by L.E.S.S. – a ultrathin, -bright, and -uniform lighting systems. 
     

    Additional Links
    Want to know more about the technology from L.E.S.S.
    More about the other fortune winners
    China, the "workshop of the world": Get more information about venture leaders China

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The investors in early stage Swiss startups

In the last 5 years the venture kick startups raised more than 365 millions. Following all these transactions we compiled and update the list of active startup investors in different fields and stages.

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Institut für Jungunternehmen

The first address for Startups in Switzerland

More than 50.000 startups were accompanied by the IFJ. A little more then 25 years ago, we have made it our mission to guide these entrepreneurs on their way to successful businesses. So they can develop their role as a part of the Swiss economy.

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Connecting the dots between Switzlerand and the world

Gioia Vichis Deutscher is the director of swissnex Brazil. After spending four years as the Haed of Startup and Innovation Services for swissnex San Francisco, Gioia Deutscher is now taking the lead in opening a new swissnex office in Brazil.

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Suzanne Hraba-Renevey is the director of swissnex Singapore. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoree. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation.

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Pascal Marmier is the director of swissnex China. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoree. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation.

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Felix Moesner is the director of swissnex Boston. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoree. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation.

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Chistian Simm is the director of swissnex San Francisco. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoree. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation.

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Balz Strasser is the director of swissnex India. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoree. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation.

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  • 60 venture kickers made it to the TOP 100 startups

    Each year, startup.ch launches the TOP 100 STARTUP AWARD in cooperation with the Handelszeitung. From over 100,000 young companies, the 100 most innovative and promising Swiss startups are picked by top startup experts.

    Check out the TOP 100
  • Kick your startup idea to success with venture kick

    venture kick helps potential entrepreneurs by giving them the opportunity to win up to CHF 130,000. Moreover, startups can use the know-how of experienced experts and entrepreneurs and be granted access to a network of investors.

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  • Swiss startups ready to take over the World.

    The venture leaders have a clear-cut goal. They envision themselves as global players and want to take the first step to their global expansion. The ten-day business development program is specifically structured to help them achieve this goal.

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  • The first address for Startups in Switzerland

    More than 50.000 startups were accompanied by the IFJ. A little more then 25 years ago, we have made it our mission to guide these entrepreneurs on their way to successful businesses. So they can develop their role as a part of the Swiss economy.

    More