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    The best Swiss entrepreneurial quotes of the Year!

    Mi. 30.07.2014, 17:00

    Entrepreneurs love quotes, sharp words from great people, which offer insights into entrepreneurial spirit and bring inspiration for our next actions. Some are universal, repeated again and again. We want to find the once said or used by Swiss based entrepreneurs, close to us, leading the way. So we’ve launched "The best Swiss entrepreneurial quotes of the Year" ...Read more


    Are you ready to take on this new challenge?

    Anyone can participate, it can be your quote, or a quote you’ve heard from a Swiss based entrepreneur. Share the inspiration: for the 10th Anniversary of venturelab, let’s keep the entrepreneurial spirit to be stronger than ever !

    Share with us your best entrepreneurial quote or one you heard from a Swiss based entrepreneur and you'll get the chance to be one of the winners of a CHF 250 voucher.


    You can choose to spend it in one of the following companies :
    1. Selfnation: get the perfect jeans (for ladies first !)
    2. Von Arkel: Unique design: Swiss made watchmaking glasses
    3. Dacuda: their worldwide renowned scanner mice
    4. Koubachi: Never loose your plant again, with the  interactive plant care
    5. GetYourGuide: book things to do, attractions, tours
    6. Everyglobe: your holidays in one click
    7. HouseTrip: book a whole home for less than the price of a hotel room
    8. IFJ: Get a discount on your incorporation.


    1.    Submit your quote on Twitter*:
    Tweet your entrepreneurial quote with @venturelab_ch and if the quote doesn't belong to you, you must add the @/# with the name of the Swiss entrepreneur / owner of the quote. The quote has to be written in English.
    Example: Technology is necessary but not a sufficient condition for success. #EdouardBugnion @venturelab_ch
    Deadline : August 14th - 12:00
    *No Twitter? Please send us your quote by email: mm@venturelab.ch

    2.    Vote on Facebook:
    All the tweets* received will be released on our Facebook page and submitted to votes.
    The two quotes with most of the votes win the contest.
    From August 18th till August 22nd 12:00

    The winners will be announced on the 26th August.


    Conditions:
    - 18 years old and +
    - Live in Switzerland

    Quote:
    - About entrepreneurship
    - From a Swiss based entrepreneur
    - Max. 3 quote submissions
    - In English


    * If two people submit the same quote, the first who submitted it will be selected.
     

    Additional Links
    Go to Twitter !

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    Martin Zahnert - Dacuda

    Plus de 500'000$ levés en 30 jours

    Mi. 30.07.2014, 16:00

    Martin Zahnert, alumni venturelab, et sa souris scanner sont au centre des attentions depuis bientôt cinq ans en Suisse et ailleurs. Tout a commencé en 2008 avec le cours venture challenge à l’ETH de Zürich, où s’est formée l’équipe. Le marché américain a pu faire connaissance avec Dacuda en 2010 pendant venture leaders, un programme entrepreneurial et commercial intensif de 10 jours à Boston. Martin Zahnert, co-fondateur de Dacuda, a la chance de participer au nouveau programme « venture leaders China » avec son nouveau produit : le plus petit scanner sans fil au monde. ...Read more

    Le départ pour Beijing et Shanghai avec neuf autres entrepreneurs est prévu en septembre. En attendant, la start-up a encore atteint un objectif ambitieux : lever plus de 500K $ sur Kickstarter, une plateforme de financement communautaire.
     
    Dans cet interview, Martin nous dévoile un peu plus son parcours et ce qu’il attend de ce voyage en Chine.

    Beaucoup de personnes se demandent : « Comment n’y ai-je pas pensé tout seul ? » Peux-tu nous décrire rapidement tout ce que pourra faire le PocketScan, votre nouveau produit ?
    Avec PocketScan, on peut très facilement scanner des images ou du texte là où on en a besoin. Que ce soit sur sa tablette, son iPhone, son PC ou son Mac. Il suffit de passer le PocketScan sur l’image, le texte ou le graphique que l’on souhaite scanner et on obtient directement le document numérisé à l’écran. À partir de là, on peut facilement envoyer des photos scannées par e-mail, les publier sur Facebook ou les insérer dans un document Word. Si on a scanné du texte ou des graphiques, ceux-ci peuvent être immédiatement modifiés avec Word ou Excel.

    L’équipe s’est décidée à collecter les fonds pour les dernières étapes du développement du PocketScan à travers le financement communautaire. Chacun a pu soutenir votre projet sur la plateforme Kickstarter. Est-ce que tu recommanderais le financement communautaire à d’autres start-up ? Quelle a été votre expérience ?
    Le financement communautaire a été un succès incroyable pour nous. En 10 heures, nous avons atteint notre objectif : 50K$. Nous faisons partie des 0,25% de projets Kickstarter ayant remporté le plus fort succès, avec plus de 500k$ levés. Même Forbes nous a nommé dans son Top 5 des projets technologiques les plus innovants en 2014.
    À part l’aspect purement économique, le financement communautaire nous a permis de sentir très tôt la réaction du marché. Nous avons donc d’un côté déjà la preuve que notre produit va recevoir un bon accueil. Nous avons aussi eu la chance de savoir dans quelle direction orienter le développement de l’appareil avant même d’avoir commencé. Ces deux aspects s’appliquent à l’évidence à tout autre produit et je peux donc que vivement recommander cette démarche.

    Qu’espères-tu de ce voyage d’affaires en Chine ?
    Dans ce monde globalisé, la Chine joue un rôle très important. Non seulement c’est là que sont produits la plupart des produits électroniques, mais de plus en plus de firmes chinoises conquièrent les marchés de masse internationaux. D’une part, mon objectif est de susciter l’enthousiasme de grandes marques pour notre produit pour qu’elles l’introduisent dans des marchés de masse en tant que titulaires de licence. D’autre part je voudrais développer la collaboration avec nos partenaires industriels.
     
    L’entreprise sud-coréenne LG Electronics a été la première entreprise à introduire la souris scanner sur les marchés. Quelle a été votre expérience avec la culture d’entreprise asiatique ?
    Jusqu’ici,  j’ai eu des expériences avec le monde de l’électronique coréen et chinois. La hiérarchie au sein des organisations a une importance bien plus grande que chez nous. Cela permet d’arriver très vite à des décisions, même si les ressorts de ces décisions ne sont pas toujours transparents. Dans le monde de l’industrie électronique, la vitesse est un gros atout.
     
    Quel conseil peux-tu donner aux nouvelles start-up ?
    Dès que l’on commence quelque chose, bien des imprévus entrent en jeu en même temps, alors qu’on n’en avait pas même considéré la possibilité. Il ne faut pas se laisser dissuader par l’envergure de son propre projet, vu que tout ne doit pas être résolu à la fois, et que pas à pas on obtient de très bons résultats. Je ne peux donc que conseiller à tous d’être curieux et d’oser faire le premier pas.

    Développer son idée d’entreprise grâce à venturelab
    Le concept de Dacuda a été développé durant un semestre dans le cadre du cours venture challenge à l’ETH de Zürich. C’est là que se trouvaient les entrepreneurs en herbe qui ont fondé Dacuda deux ans plus tard. C’est le début d’une réussite – et ce également au niveau personnel, puisque quatre des cinq participants aux cours et membres de l’équipe d’origine sont encore aujourd’hui à bord. « venturelab est une super opportunité de rencontrer des futurs entrepreneurs, tout en apprenant les concepts les plus importants d’un business plan sous forme condensée », souligne Alexander Ilic, co-fondateur de Dacuda. Depuis 25 ans, des développeurs du monde entier cherchaient à concevoir la souris scanner – sans succès. Aujourd’hui, la technologie brevetée SLAM®Scan développée au sein de Dacuda, d’une simplicité enfantine, permet de numériser rapidement du texte, des images et des tableaux, d’éditer directement le document obtenu et de partager l’information.




     

    Additional Links
    Participez au prochain cours semestriel venture challenge !

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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

    Andreas_selfnation1.jpg
    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.

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    Watch videos from success stories

    TOP 100 Startups

    Powered by startup.ch and Handelszeitung

    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

    venture leaders

    venture leaders program – ten intense days in USA or China

    Swiss startups ready to take over the World.

    The venture leaders - the members of the Swiss national startup team- 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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    venture kick

    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 also use the know-how of experienced experts and entrepreneurs and be granted access to a national network of investors.

    Apply

    venturelab workshops

    Powered by industry professionals

    Learn from entrepreneurs and industry leaders

    In the last 10 years venturelab alumni have raised several 100 millions from investors and built successful businesses. Now they are ready to share with the next generation of talented hightech startups.

    Learn more about the program

    Directory of active investors

    Powered by startup.ch

    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.

    Filter your potential investors

    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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  • 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.

    More
  • 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.

    More
  • 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