SNAP GmbH is the Startup of the Week 43: Moving people


Health & FoodTech, IT & ICT

You canControlling technical systems with the help of thoughts – for many people this still sounds like science fiction. But it is already reality. Our Startup of the Week SNAP GmbH develops products and services in exactly this area: the interface between the human brain and technical systems. Sinah Grube from SNAP GmbH explained to us in an interview how exactly this works and what SNAP GmbH contributes to the development.

Hello Sinah! Thank you for taking the time for us today. Please explain what SNAP GmbH does.

We at SNAP GmbH, based in the BioMedicineCentre in Bochum, concentrate on the development of products and services in the following areas brain-computer interface (BCI systems), artificial intelligence (AI systems), data hosting, technical assistance systems and motion analysis.

Your vision lies in the field of brain-computer interfaces. How does that work?

The BCI is an interface from the human brain to a technical system, such as a computer or a mobile phone. In electroencephalography (EEG), we place electrodes on the scalp to record the activities of the brain. The neurological data obtained can be used to control technical systems in the environment through the pure thoughts of the human being. The possible applications are immense and offer great potential for the future (e.g. from the entertainment industry to health care). We are currently also part of two funded projects in this area, VAFES and ReXo, which are supported by the State of NRW and the European Union.

At ReXo project workers develop a biomechanically designed, adaptive exoskeleton for the upper extremities. In that project SNAP enables control of the rexoskeleton via the brain. Our goal is the training of a very well-functioning AI solution for a BCI. So SNAP GmbH decided right from the start to evaluate kinematic data for various fields of application. Thus we are not only AI specialists in the field of neurological data, but also in the evaluation of kinematic data. One example of an AI solution is our AI-based motion detection system, which we call AnaKin (analytical kinetics).

For motion analysis, we have developed our own in-house sensors that are attached to the body for data acquisition. The AnaKin records the movements of the wearer and memorises certain movements. Of course, it is also possible to purchase our own portable sensors, so that the movement data can be individually trained with the AnaKin. The trained AI can recognise whether, for example, a person carries out a movement correctly or not. On customer request SNAP GmbH as a service provider also offers pattern recognition and motion analysis on AI basis of already existing data sets recorded with external sensors. In addition to movement tracking, there is also the possibility of pure gesture control with our sensors. Only with a wristband equipped with our described sensors, gesture control becomes reality. With this, smartphones, games, tablets, drones can be controlled by a single wipe with the hand in the air.  

This is really an exciting field. What makes you stand out from your competitors?

In fact, there are very few companies in Germany that develop BCI systems, so we as a company are already extremely interesting for external partners and investors. In addition, we record and analyse neurological data synchronously with kinematic data. This combination is also not always common. 

Our motion analysis with our self-developed sensors offers the user considerable added value, asan inertial sensor transmitted the data wirelessly. Consequently, mobile use is also possible outside a laboratory. You can easily attache the sensor to the body with straps. An app collects and analyses the data. Furthermore, a USP in motion analysis is the connection to our individual AI solution. With regard to our digital assistance system, it can be said that we have the special feature here that our therapy platform is used in telemedical care. For example, doctors and physiotherapists can view the course of movement and training data. 

The trend towards video consultation hours will also increase more and more due to the current Covid-19 situation. Digital and AI-based assistance systems will provide an optimal basis for this. A very noteworthy point is, of course, that all neurological as well as kinematic data will be stored in Bochum and processed in compliance with DSGVO.

In addition to our products and services, the people behind the scenes at SNAP are unique. We are an intercultural, young, dynamic team that works every day with a great technical passion to invent technology that enhances our capabilities, our community and our world.

How do you integrate your solutions into a successful business model?

In the field of brain-computer interfaces we receive many interesting and individual enquiries for the development of new business fields. In the case of specific enquiries, we work together within the framework of development contracts. Furthermore, we are currently being supported in the BCI area by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the European Union within the framework of two funding projects, VAFES and REXO.

Our business model for processing kinematic data is similar to our BCI. The customer can choose between two options within the first meeting: 

  • The customer buys SNAPs specially developed sensors, which they need for data acquisition of the movements. Subsequently, an AI solution for the motion data is trained with our sensors in a customised service. 
  • The customer does not need any sensors, as data records from external sensors are already available. Therefore, we only train an AI for the existing motion data with the AnaKin individually according to customer requirements. 

We market our digital assistance system, the IRhythmic, as a training device and can be purchased from us on the market including a corresponding app. 

As our focus is on the health industry, we also offer a prevention course from SNAP GmbH for fall and movement prevention. The statutory health insurance companies usually pay for almost the complete prevention course.

An important note to all investors: We are always on the lookout for further investors, as venture capital can greatly accelerate the development of the BCI for the consumer market.

You just mentioned that you focus on the health industry. Are these the only potential clients you are addressing?

We address a very large target group with our products and services. Our focus is on the entire healthcare sector as well as the games industry. In the healthcare sector we can offer a grandiose added value in the area of prevention as well as rehabilitation. In the games industry, on the other hand, we can offer interactions with computer games, for example. We are currently gaining a foothold in the German market. For the future we cannot and do not want to exclude international marketing.

What stage of development are you currently in? And where do you want to go?

Very good question – because there is actually something from every development phase in our company. Our vision is and remains that we will develop a robust, intuitively operable BCI system that recognises and implements commands from the brain – a kind of “Siri” for thoughts. Due to our unique selling points, we have already received several requests for such a BCI system. So far, we can only process relatively simple commands with the BCI and are still bound to the computer. We want to become more precise so that, for example, a paraplegic person can move his hand – or legs – as naturally as possible with the help of an exoskeleton.

The next step is to transfer the AI (for neurological data) to portable devices. On the other hand, we have already successfully launched our sensors for motion analysis with the motion recognition system AnaKin. The same applies to our digital assistance system – the IRhythmic. Here we are in good contact with health insurance companies. End customers, such as hospitals and physiotherapists already use the training device. Our certified prevention course is also already successfully conducted online. Our sponsored projects, ReXo and VAFES, got off to a good start at the beginning of the year and we are on schedule here with our cooperation partners and are thus keeping on course.

 

Sinah, thank you very much for the exciting interview. We will definitely continue to follow SNAP’s developments and wish you continued success!

If you would like to learn more about SNAP GmbH, please visit their Innoloft profile.

Healex is the Startup of the Week 42: Connecting clinical research and clinical care


Health & FoodTech, IT & ICT

Currently, the medical sector has a major information management problem. This has been caused by the increase in knowledge in its scope, but also in the level of detail. The consequences are delays in the transfer of research results to effective therapies and massive cost increases due to increased expenditure. The medical sector definitely needs a solution. Our Startup of the Week, Healex, has developed an exciting platform approach that can help many stakeholders in the healthcare sector. We met Christoph Plamper from Healex for an interview.

Hello Christoph! Thank you for taking time for us today. Please explain shortly what Healex is.

Healex is a software and consulting company based in Cologne and Berlin that develops products and solutions for the efficient planning, control and acceleration of clinical trials, for therapy consulting in patient care and for the management of large volumes of clinical and health data.

You have developed your own platform for this, right? What is the goal of the platform?

Yes, exactly. The “Healex Site Management System” (SMS) brings together sponsors, researchers and investigators on an innovative platform and enables the planning, implementation and collaboration in clinical studies across multiple sites. Clinical studies are thus significantly accelerated and digitally managed. By supporting international medical data standards such as “FHIR” and the “Healex Clinical Hub”, a FHIR-based platform for structured clinical data, the “Healex Site Management System” (SMS) and our other solutions can be seamlessly integrated into existing hospital systems and research infrastructures, enabling the easy integration and use of structured clinical data for research and care.

What is special about this approach?

We bring together sponsors from pharma, clinics, research networks, researchers and investigators on our platforms. With the platforms we provide powerful collaboration tools and solutions for structuring clinical data. Both ensure that personalised therapies can be developed faster. In addition they are more data-driven and thus more cost-effectively in the long term.

Do you only sell your Healex Site Management System?

No. We develop and sell IT solutions in the B2B healthcare market, mainly our own but also partner solutions. This happens usually through multi-year license agreements, both SaaS and on-premise. We focus on platform models as well as product families and individual products. Roughly, we have divided our product and business model into two levels: Our core products are primarily aimed at large hospitals, pharmaceuticals and research organizations and are networked infrastructure solutions. Our Corona web tools are flexible web solutions that many industries can use. The core of our business model is that you can use almost all our solutions independently but also connect them and use them together. Business model is 70% product sales and development and approx. 30% consulting. We do not offer any other services apart from our core products.

Who falls within your target group?

Our target groups are mainly large university hospitals and research networks. Many hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and health insurance companies are customers as well.

What are your successes that you like to look back on?

For more than twelve years we have been supporting research groups and physicians in the integration of clinical care and research. Due to our close cooperation with one of the largest university hospitals in Germany, we have deep experience and proven solutions to critical processes and problems in clinical research and care. For many of these challenges, we have already delivered solutions that thousands of researchers and physicians use every day in numerous multinational clinical trials.

 

Christoph, that brings us to the end of our interview. Thank you very much for the exciting interview! We wish you continued success and will definitely continue to follow your developments.

If you want to learn more about Healex, you can take a look at the corresponding Innoloft profile.

Semasquare is the Startup of the Week 41: Digitalisation of vehicle cockpits


Industry 4.0 & Logistics, IT & ICT

Easy handling, automation of functions and low installation effort – for cockpits in commercial and special vehicles this is desirable, but often not a norm. Our Startup of the Week semasquare GmbH has recognized this gap and developed new approaches to make vehicle cockpits more intuitive and efficient. Today we talked to Moritz Koch, Sales Business Development Manager about their solution.

Hello Moritz! Thanks for taking the time today! Explain to our readers what semasquare does.

We at semasquare offer HMI and software engineering for commercial and special vehicles.

What do your solutions contain?

semasquare GmbH offers expertise on hardware and software up to the cloud. We work in an agile manner and can thus iteratively develop the perfect operating concept for the respective area of application via first mockups using rapid prototyping with customers. After defining the operating concept, we select suitable hardware components together with the customer and develop the software according to his ideas. With our experience in the areas of UI/UX, design decisions are critically discussed to optimize the user experience for the end user.

How does your approach differ from that of other providers?

Previous concepts for operating commercial vehicles often still rely on physical input elements such as buttons and switches that automate vehicle functions only to a limited extent. This makes it difficult to map the complexity of the vehicles. Service providers usually only offer the development of a modern user interface. However, the knowledge required to integrate them into a cloud and thus exploit their full potential is still missing.

So you develop individual concepts and also implement them, right?

That’s right. We offer individual engineering services for commercial vehicle manufacturers. Our goal on the one hand is to make the operation of the vehicles suitably intuitive. On the other hand we want to make the complex tasks manageable. Furthermore, semasquare enables the transfer of the accruing data to servers or the cloud. Thus we help our customers to develop and implement new innovative, data-based business models. A further project, which we adapted to the Covid-19 situation, is a puzzle bot which Escape Rooms or other providers of experiences can use to create and offer individual tours.

Has a new target group developed for you? Or are you still addressing the special vehicle industry?

So far yes. Our previous customers are manufacturers of commercial and special vehicles with complex superstructures from the fields of street sweepers/canal cleaners. In addition, many other applications such as waste collection vehicles, drilling vehicles and fire-fighting vehicles in public road traffic are of interest. Furthermore, commercial vehicles that are not registered for public road traffic, such as construction machines, construction site, forestry and agricultural vehicles are also targeted. Manufacturers of commercial vehicles, users, brokers, rental companies and service providers using commercial vehicles are also interesting customer groups.

You already entered the market. What are your next steps?

Yes, the market entry has already taken place with a pilot project. A second customer is about to place an order. To simplify the entry for these customers, we offered a service for the development of an HMI in the first step.

In addition to cold calling, we use the existing network via the cooperative visibleRuhr, Bochum Wirtschaftsentwicklung, the university and company network ruhrvalley and other friendly companies. Once the pilot projects are completed, we plan to use the experience gained from the projects to develop platforms for HMI and the cloud. The idea is that they will accelerate the processing of further projects. Based on the development, the service should slowly be transferred to products. In the future, the cloud will be used via licenses. This will make the cloud a scalable product. We want to continue to offer services based on the HMI platform. Our intention is to further expand our current partnerships.

We will also work with the Institute for Electric Mobility at Bochum University of Applied Sciences and other partners to promote innovation and progress in the field of electric mobility for commercial vehicles. In addition to the references of the pilot projects, we will thus underpin our innovative strength. We will compensate for the increasing workload by hiring additional full-time employees and working students. Our overriding goal is customer diversification. In this way we want to ensure that one customer accounts for a maximum of 30% of total sales.

Moritz, thank you very much for the exciting interview! We wish you continued success with your goals. We hope to hear a lot more from you.

If you want to learn more about semasquare, please have a look at the corresponding Innoloft profile.

The Business Development Agency of the City of Aachen and Innoloft launch digital innovation platform for EUREGIO Meuse-Rhine


Banking & Finance, Energy & Environment, Health & FoodTech, IT & ICT, Mobility

Digital platform supports Aachen’s companies and startups

With its digital innovation platform (DIP), the Business Development Agency of the City of Aachen supports companies and start-ups: The platform offers the possibility to get new business partners (for example B2B customers). In addition, the innovation platform presents innovative technologies and solutions from the region and thus supports companies in innovation scouting.

Platform solution for business activities

The DIP is available free of charge to all companies in the Aachen region. Thus, numerous features of the platform enable the initiation of business relations between companies and the direct exchange among each other. For this purpose, companies, research institutions and start-ups can register on the platform and enter their own profile. This profile can then be used to post products, services and technologies to communicate them in Aachen and beyond. To enable solution providers and solution seekers to find each other directly on the platform, it is possible to publish customer and cooperation requests in the form of “Requests” on the platform. A matchmaking algorithm helps to find suitable partners and customers automatically.

Contact initiation and networking by digital means

Users have the possibility to get in contact with each other via the built-in chat functions. This facilitates the exchange in times of home office without the opportunity for personal meetings. “The DIP platform can thus take on a sub-task of trade fairs, events and conferences, namely getting to know, networking and initiating business and innovative projects,” says Dieter Begass, Head of Economic Development Aachen. It allows us to overcome spatial distances, because it enables us to exchange with business partners independent of time and location. After Corona, the DIP will continue to be operated for registered users and can provide valuable support to companies, research institutes and start-ups in initiating cooperation and finding innovative solutions.

It is precisely with this in mind that the HYPEREGIO DIP was initiated by the Department of Economics, Science and Europe of the City of Aachen and other players such as AGIT within the framework of the Interregio programme “Hyperegio EarlyTech” and implemented together with Innoloft GmbH. The official launch of the platform will take place on September 7. Interested parties are asked to register for the digital launch event at https://kurzelinks.de/diplaunch. From September 7th, a free registration will be available under the link https://hyperegio-dip.eu.

 

About the DIP Platform

The objective of the “Early Tech Program” is to network innovations from companies and research institutes in the Euregio. Economic added value can be generated by creating synergies and accelerating the market launch of technologies. A large part of the activities for networking and creating transparency in the area of innovation will be bundled digitally. The digital innovation platform (DIP) serves this purpose. It is docked to the constantly growing digital innovation network of Innoloft GmbH and to the Hyperegio platform as user interface. With their presentation on the platform, startups, research institutions and companies can draw attention to projects and their own products, network with each other and enter into new collaborations. In the search for competencies and innovative customer solutions, DIP helps with innovation scouting.

About Innoloft GmbH

The Innoloft network promotes innovation by connecting the most innovative players from all technology sectors. The network is designed to break down barriers between companies, investors and start-ups worldwide and open up economic opportunities for them. To this end, specific digital formats are used to identify development partners, new technologies, investment cases or customers and to bring together corresponding players on the B2B platform. Users are thus supported in partner acquisition, innovation scouting and lead generation.

Breeze Technologies is the Startup of the Week 35: Sensors for air quality


Energy & Environment, Energy Efficiency and Environment, IT & ICT

In recent months we have seen the positive effects of the lockdown on our environment. The smog has disappeared and the air was clear again in many places. However, many cities only measure their air quality selectively, leaving large gaps in the data. This is set to change now. We spoke with Robert Heinecke about his startup Breeze Technologies for this mission.

Hello, Robert. Thanks for answering our questions today. Let’s get right to it: what does Breeze Technologies do?

Breeze Technologies provides comprehensive air quality and climate data, generates recommendations for action and thus helps cities and companies to create a more liveable environment.

That sounds very exciting! Could you explain to us exactly how this works?

Gladly! We develop small and cost-effective air quality sensors that detect all common air pollutants in real time. They collect the data thus obtained in a central cloud. In addition, we also integrate other data sources, such as satellite data, in order to obtain the most accurate picture possible of the air quality in our cities. An artificial intelligence system developed by us evaluates this data in real time. It  provides optimal recommendations for action to improve local air quality. These are fed from a catalog of over 3,500 individual measures and range from photocatalytic asphalt in road construction to traffic control based on air quality data, such as that being tested in the city of Cologne as gatekeeper traffic lights.

By using artificial intelligence, your system gives new recommendations depending on the situation, right?

Right. Our system also measures the impact of the measures implemented, which enables us to make even better recommendations in the future. We also provide a similar service for building managers, whom we help to measure and optimise air quality in office environments. You can use our system both indoors and outdoors.

How did you build your business model?

We rent our sensors to companies and cities and charge an annual rental and maintenance fee. In addition to the measures recommended by us for improving air quality, service providers and manufacturers are acquired as partners who pay a commission fee for sales generated through us.

Do you keep your target group quite general?

Yes, we mainly address HSE and facility managers in larger companies and the municipal administration. The industry in which the company is active is not important for the time being.

Two years ago you won the Hamburg Founder’s Prize and you have already started exciting projects. Can you give us a little insight into that?

Sure. We have already achieved many successes with renowned pilot customers such as Deutsche Telekom and Smart City projects in Hamburg and Berlin. We also make some of the data we collect available to the public via a citizens’ platform. Our company has also been named one of the most promising European start-ups in numerous national and international competitions. These include, for example, the Hamburg Founder’s Prize, which you have just mentioned, the EU Top 50, an award from the German President and inclusion in the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for social entrepreneurs.

Robert, thank you very much for this exciting interview! We wish you continued success.
If you would like to learn more about Breeze Technologies, please visit their Innoloft profile to find out more about their products and requests.

Hybrid Lidar Systems is the Startup of the Week 34: Smart Sensoring and Automotive


IT & ICT, Mobility, Smart City & Buildings

The mobility sector is facing radical change, as we redifine mobility in terms of safety and sustainability. This is an exciting time in which many organisations develop new solutions that incorporate the latest technology. Today we talk to Ingo Diettele, CEO of Hybrid Lidar Systems. The Startup of the Week has developed exciting solutions to meet the needs of the modern transport system.

Hello Ingo! We’re glad you’re here today. Can you give us an insight into the German transport system and current developments? What role does your startup play in it?

Germany has one of the densest road and rail networks in the world. In this context, safety-relevant requirements of all types of mobility are essential areas of consideration for the industries involved. Among other things, autonomous mobility plays an important role in current discussions.

Mobility and safety have thus entered into an inseparable symbiosis. Sensors that take over the functions of the human eye and our experiential knowledge are indispensable for making autonomous driving possible. Research is increasingly focusing on LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensors. These sensors are not ready yet to enter the mass market, but due to their characteristics they represent a potential solution for nationwide, fully automated driving that meets safety standards.

Our project focuses on the research and (further) development of LiDAR sensors and their applications, concentrating on a completely new approach. The decisive factor was the invention of an innovative measuring method. This allows data acquisition using novel digital signal processing algorithms with a very low computational effort.

A vehicle optimally equipped for traffic has to meet various industrial requirements. The currently available advanced technology offers partly precise and expensive solutions. With our product LiSSA (LiDAR for Smart Sensing and Automotive) we present a unique approach that meets and even exceeds the requirements. Due to the low computational effort, the innovation can be offered reliably and cost-effectively. With our hybrid process, in addition to high resolution (double VGA), a high degree of accuracy (<1 cm), a guaranteed laser safety class 1 (eye-safe), and a range of more than 200 meters are possible.

The combination of several novel approaches enables better object classification, which is a crucial safety factor for the movement of autonomous vehicles in a dynamic environment.

How exactly do your sensors work?

With our LiSSA Automotive it is possible to generate a high-resolution LiDAR image to detect objects. The software algorithms make it possible to change parameters that were previously firmly anchored in the chip. By using our multiplexing approach it is possible to drastically increase the usable chip area and thus to generate a high-resolution image. In addition, we are currently working on further novel components and can thus optimize the resolution in the future. The goal is to equip every moving object in road traffic with our LiDAR sensor technology so that we can raise traffic to a new level of security!

The high-resolution data that we provide with the help of our sensor is available for further processing both inside and outside the vehicle. LiDAR sensors are indispensable for further linking of the vehicle. Among others in the fields of logistics, consumer electronics (smartphones/tablets), augmented reality or even wind power and drones: Wherever a machine must or should be able to “see”, you need a LiDAR sensor.

You have already presented many unique values of the LiDAR sensor technology, can you go into more detail about the most important USP of your solution?

As already mentioned, we offer a significantly higher resolution with our product: This is done by our signal processing algorithm, which also drastically increases the usable chip area. In addition, an innovative multi-spectral approach is part of the project – this allows several areas of the environment being simultaneously, resulting in a faster and higher resolution environment detection.

Is your innovation already usable?

Not yet. Currently the Hybrid Lidar Systems is mainly in the research and development process. In our laboratory we are manufacturing the first LiDAR sensors in manual work with prototype components. We are active in the field of optoelectronics, as well as hardware and software programming and act as a design center.

Within the next two years we aim to revolutionize autonomous mobility using LiDAR sensors. The long-term, overriding goal is to use our sensor to provide the basis for safe and cost-efficient mobility for the mass market.

I see. In which industries is your product at home? Only the automotive industry?

Not quite. The main target group is the international automotive industry, yes. However, we have also established numerous contacts with other industries that require the advantages of LiDAR sensors. The “seeing” is an elementary property that is needed in many sectors (logistics, industry, wind energy, health care & sports, traffic & mobility) to take products to a new (safety) level.

You mentioned earlier that you are still in the research phase. What is the next big milestone for you?

We have been pursuing our goals since the end of 2018, the founding of the company. At the end of Q4 this year, Q1/2021 we plan to book our first automotive project. Our industrial product LiSSA Industry is already available for order and will be delivered to the first customer in the logistics sector at the end of this year.

Ingo, unfortunately we have already reached the end of the interview. Thank you very much for the exciting insights into the automotive world and your innovative solution. We wish you continued success! 

If you want to learn more about Hybrid Lidar Systems, you can have a look at the Innoloft profile.

Olmatic is the Startup of the Week 32: Efficient energy management solutions


Energy & Environment, Industry 4.0 & Logistics, IT & ICT

Although the addition of “smart” has long been an important aspect in the discussion on energy management systems, concrete implementation approaches are rarely found.  Our Startup of the Week has the same opinion – especially since conventional systems are usually inflexible and platform-bound. One of the co-founders of Olmatic, Christian Olma, therefore introduces us to their solution: The Olmatic Power Tracking.

Hello Christian! Thank you for taking the time. We are looking forward to getting to know Olmatic better. Would you give us a small pitch for that?

Sure! We develop, manufacture and market devices and systems for energy management 4.0 and wireless networking through central control units in the industry 4.0 and IoT area. Our highly innovative Olmatic Power Tracking enables maximum self-sufficiency in the energy sector.

What exactly is the Olmatic Power Tracking about?

The so-called Olmatic Power Tracking (OPT) is an intelligent combination of hardware and software, combined in one product, which deals with the completely self-sufficient supply of electrical consumers via regenerative energy sources without the necessity of a conventional supply network. In order to use the power available from renewable energy sources (solar cells, wind turbines, hydroelectric power plants, etc.) in the most effective way, without losing excess energy in the form of power loss or the like, the OPT offers the appropriate technologies and systems to realize dynamic power distribution and prioritization of energy and consumer sources. This means that with an optimal design it is possible to almost completely dispense with the public supply network and to reduce the energy demand via the conventional supply network to < 1%. Even if the system is used without regenerative energy sources, i.e. directly via the conventional supply network, >30% energy savings can be achieved compared to conventional energy management systems.

The main focus of our energy management system is on the specific treatment of each input source and each consumer output independently of each other. This gives us the possibility to distribute energy to all consumers of a system with the highest efficiency. In combination with a direct integration into the supply line and open interfaces in the communication line, our energy management systems can easily be adapted to or integrated into existing systems. This makes it possible to distribute energy across the boundaries of a specific platform or system.

How does your product perform compared to currently established energy management systems?

In contrast to conventional energy management systems, it is characterized above all by the additional networking of the Smart Grid at the supply level, which enables stepless power regulation (0-100%) and power distribution. Through the specific consideration of all energy consumers and the platform independence of the systems, a highly efficient energy sharing between different energy systems can be operated with maximum efficiency. Conventional systems are platform-bound and can only communicate via the communication interfaces and suffer from higher losses and a lack of dynamics due to static switching on and off based on preconfigured power hysteresis. Especially in safety-relevant systems, the simple shutdown can lead to enormous security gaps or chaos scenarios, which the OPT procedure avoids via intelligent and dynamic power regulation and distribution on the basis of prioritizations. Through customized, individually adaptable designs of the modules, a maximum energy saving can be achieved at low investment costs for the manufacturer/developer, which promise low payback periods. The OPT process is linked to already existing and established energy management modules and central control units of the Olmatic product range and thus realizes the following two core products, which can be used in combination or independently of each other in all AC and DC power-based energy systems, conventional and regenerative generation methods.

You were just talking about customizing your products to suit your customer’s needs. The pricing will certainly be the same, right?

We follow the implementation of two different business models. On the one hand, we sell via direct sales in the B2B area through appropriate acquisition of our sales team and in the course of networking measures, and on the other hand, we have a large cooperation partner named Endrich Bauelemente Vertriebs GmbH, which acts as a middleman for us and actively sells our product range internationally. Since we always offer customer-specific products, the pricing model is variable and calculated according to complexity and effort. As an additional service in the field of Energy Management 4.0 we offer the complete energy consulting as an additional service.

What do you think about the market you are currently addressing? To what extent do you see growth potential, opportunities and risks there?

Placing a product such as Olmatic Power Tracking at the right time in a market that is currently more than ever in the focus of current attention undoubtedly brings with it a huge opportunity to establish the company as a pioneer in a market that will continue to grow steadily in the future. Since the market for electrical consumers will tend to rise in the coming years, while conventional energy resources will tend to decline, it is to be expected that the market in the segment of renewable energy supply will bring secure growth in the coming decades. Timely market entry and the protection of the product against competitors therefore represent a huge opportunity for us to already now sustainably position ourselves for the coming decades. Nevertheless, the market is highly competitive and is already populated by a large number of “big players” who will gladly and directly accept the competition and already have the financial background to become active here in the short term. The big chance is thus at the same time a big risk to lose the competition and thus the market shares already at the beginning, if the strategy and the goals are not pursued with fullest precision. We pursue the international target group.

 

You founded your company in 2016, a lot has happened since then. You have already explained some of the results to us. What are the next steps for the development of Olmatic?

Last year, we developed the existing prototypes to market maturity. The aim was to be able to place them on the market as quickly as possible. In the course of the prototype phase, a new energy management module was developed, which includes the OPT procedure. Three new products have been developed, which are directly communicated to already existing customer networks and distribution channels. The power supply module is the first product of the new Universal 4.0 series and serves in its current version as a power supply module for intelligent supply and energy management according to OPT for consumers in the low voltage range. The wiu, which has been expanded to include the software functionality of the OPT, can be marketed directly as a successor model to the existing plus the additional function of the OPT and will in future serve as a central gateway and control unit for the digital networking of the system.

Christian, many thanks for this exciting and detailed interview. We wish you every success in the further development of Olmatic. If anyone would like to learn more, please take a look at Olmatic’s Innoloft profile.

Conclurer is the Startup of the Week 28: Smart service for the industry 4.0


Industry 4.0 & Logistics, IT & ICT

The digital transformation enables new business models and efficient processes in every industry. The Startup of the Week Conclurer specializes in digitalization in the machine and plant engineering industry or the general industry 4.0 sector. This means that chaos in the service department, dissatisfied customers and pressure from the market are a thing of the past. Janick Oswald, Innovation Delivery Manager, told us what Conclurer makes possible instead and what distinguishes them from other startups.

Hello, Janick! Thanks for coming here today. How would you describe Conclurer in one sentence?

Conclurer brings digital service 4.0 to the machine and plant engineering industry, ensuring long-term success with intelligent software that makes service easy and generates more revenue.

You currently sell these solutions under the product name CUSE. Could you tell us a bit more about it?

Of course! With CUSE as a cloud-based software solution, we offer the mechanical and plant engineering industry a platform for all after-sales use cases. CUSE combines different tools and functionality in only one solution with a playfully easy user interface. Our goal is to map all activities and tasks that occur in service in a simple and collaborative manner and to solve them as quickly as possible. We collect relevant data for analyses at the same time and make the work in the service department easier and more efficient day after day thanks to intelligent assistants. The basis for this is an automated workflow engine, a scalable machine database incl. service logbook and various assistant systems. Thanks to a state-of-the-art docker architecture and standardised APIs, our system scales with your application and integrates optimally into your system landscape.

I see. What are the concrete added values associated with the use of your services?

We have packed all our experience and knowledge of the last years and countless after-sales projects into one software. The result is CUSE – the easy-to-use software for the after-sales which delivers added value from day 1. No matter where you start, CUSE creates transparency and efficiency to generate more revenue in the long run. Whether it is a small medium-sized company struggling with telephone and sticky notes or a large innovator where the sensors are already integrated in the machines. Cuse transparently maps the installed base, shows unused potential in service and collects valuable data for the next stage of preventive maintenance. Our usability is one of the success factors, because even the best system is useless if no one uses it.

Conclurer Digitalisierung 4.0
Das Conclurer Team

In your Innoloft profile you have selected the business model “License” among others. How does this work in detail?

We not only talk about the service trend, but also implement it ourselves.  As Software-as-a-Service we deliver CUSE browser-based over the cloud. Ready for immediate use, regardless of time and place. But we don’t just deliver software. As experts in service digitization, we accompany our customers from the as-is analysis, potential analysis and idea generation to the implemented service solution and the successful introduction of the system in the company. We are involved in the entire project and ensure the added value of our solutions.

Who do you want to reach with CUSE?

Our solutions offer added value to all those who sell assets requiring maintenance and service, which offer valuable potential over the entire life cycle. Our main target group includes plant and mechanical engineering, regardless of whether the assets in question are mobile or stationary. We currently focus on the DACH region. In Germany, mechanical engineering is the largest employer with more than 1 million employees.

As it sounds, you’re not really new to the business anymore and can already sell your products well. Who are your customers? What are your next steps for further growth?

Our software solutions have been used for several years by customers such as Voith, Azo, Christian Maier and Diefenbacher. With Cuse, we have been offering the most important functionalities for after-sales in a standard software package for a year now and have already proven this many times. We are constantly developing CUSE further and adding relevant functionalities to offer even more added value every day.

Janick, thank you very much for the exciting insights into your idea and technology. We wish you continued success! If anyone wants to know more about Conclurer, please take a look at their Innoloft profile and contact them.

Startups of the Month – June 2020


Energy & Environment, Health & FoodTech, IT & ICT, Mobility

Our five startups of the week of june at a glance

In June, the startups OMNIA, Genie Enterprise, Famedly, Vimbee and Synertics gave us exciting insights into their solutions and innovations with their Startup of the Week interviews. We have briefly compiled statements about their business models, markets, target groups and solution approaches for you here, in our startups of the month format. You can read the details in the individual interviews. Moreover, you can contact them directly via our messenger function in our network. Here you can also present yourself with your own profile and get in contact with the startups.  

OMNIA – Leading transformation processes to success (CW23)

We follow a very simple approach in what we do: ‘master, quantify, implement’.“ – Andreas Pointvogl, Managing Partner at OMNIA 

The energy turnaround is still in full swing. More and more companies and energy suppliers are converting their entire systems. However, this will cost time, money and probably also a lot of nerves. This is why OMNIA is focusing on precisely these transformation processes. Their expertise lays not only in the theory, but also in the actual implementation. OMNIA advises and accompanies their partners through every step of the process and the consultants become part of the team. This results in a mix of technical experts, development workers and politicians, which is unique in the market.

Customers include governments, international organisations, banks, public and private companies that are in a transition process, want to accompany it or initiate it. The current focus is on the energy sector, with OMNIA also developing new services in the field of sustainable financing. You can read more details about them and their services in the interview or find out more in their requests.

Read the full interview with OMNIA

Genie Enterprise – Using artificial intelligence (CW24)

„We digitize human perception by using the latest research findings to create practical, sustainable solutions.” – Regina Keßler, founder of Genie Enterprise

Genie Enterprise develops products and applications using artificial intelligence and machine learning. In addition, they support their customers with their expertise through classic consulting. With their products they solve concrete problems in a specific area. One of the applications is WineGenie, a digital sommelier that suggests suitable wines to customers in the online shop, but also on site. The startup also offers solutions for the customer service area, which they can adapt according to customer needs. Human behaviour and perception are always the important basis on which to build. Currently, WineGenie is about to enter the market. At the moment they develop and test further solutions.

With large medium-sized and large companies as a target group, Genie Enterprise is dedicated to a variety of projects to make life easier for people with the help of AI. For more information, contact details and partnership requests, please refer to our database in your requests.   

Read the full interview with Genie Enterprise

Famedly – Successful communication in the health sector (CW25)

„Good medicine is created through good communication and teamwork, therefore Famedly bundles all communication channels and ensures that the right information reaches the right people.“ – Dr. Phillipp Kurtz, CEO of Famedly

New health data is generated every second. Therefore, to ensure optimal patient care, you must exchange the data securely and efficiently. Otherwise, errors in treatment or diagnosis can occur. Famedly has developed a solution for that. Famedly is a decentralized platform for medical cooperation. It enables a large number of medical institutions, such as hospitals and doctors’ practices, but also pharmacies and inpatient care, to improve cooperation within and outside the institution. Depending on the needs, there are different functions that can be used.

All functions meet the requirements of data protection and are absolutely safe to use and forward data. The open source technologies used by Famedly offer such a high level of data security that  also the French government and the German Bundeswehr use them. With Famedly, security and data protection no longer slows down digital progress in medicine, but provides the decentralized platform for smooth digital change. To contact Famedly directly, you can use our database and its requests.

Read the full interview with Famedly

Vimbee – Platform for consumers and companies (CW26)

Vimbee can become the world’s first and only prosumer network that turns consumers into valuable prosumers for businesses.” – Ehsan Shirangi, CEO of Vimbee

Vimbee is developing a platform for the exchange between customers and companies. On this platform, consumers can provide product-related feedback. This way, companies receive direct feedback on the success of their product. This knowledge about the consumer can also be used for market research purposes. The global economic system is mapped in digital form, which promotes real data mining innovation, growth and knowledge on a global level. The user generated content provides the opportunity to conduct recommendation marketing. For consumers, the use of the platform is free of charge, while companies have to pay for access. Here Vimbee offers different price levels. Currently, Vimbee is at the end of its testing and development phase. Take a look at the database to find out more about their request.

Read the full interview with Vimbee

Synertics – Data Driven Mobility Solutions (CW27)

“Compared to other solutions, which often only represent descriptive data, we offer solutions that specifically evaluate data, merge it with external databases and thus generate significant added value for the user by creating algorithms and applying AI methods.” – Manuel Pessanha, CEO at Synertics

The mobility industry faces many challenges: E-cars, sharing models and ensuring efficiency. One thing above all is needed for this – data. You must analyze and evaluate this data before it can be used. Synertics develops suitable applications for exactly this case. In other words: their platform solutions promote productivity and profitability of products and services in the mobility industry. That means that Synertics focuses on investors, operators and communities involved in charging infrastructure, car sharing and micro-mobility. They thus offer an analytical tool that provides valuable insights by evaluating data. Founded in early 2020, Synertics is now in the process of refining its technology. A beta version was already tested in 2019. Check them out on our platform.

Read the full interview with Synertics

Vimbee is the Startup of the Week 26: Connecting Powerful Relations


IT & ICT

Where do you collect customer feedback on what a company receives in relation to its services? How do you get the most out of the opinions and suggestions? One thing is clear: you need an interface that allows you to evaluate consumer feedback and implement concrete measures. Vimbee, the startup of the week, has developed a platform to provide this interface. Today we are talking to CEO Ehsan Shirangi about Vimbee’s mission and capabilities.

Hello Ehsan! Thank you so much for taking time for us today. Let’s start right away with the first question: What is Vimbee?

Vimbee is a global network that helps companies leverage real-time and consumption-related information. They can also receive consumer opinions and requests for trend and market research and automatically generated recommendation marketing. Vimbee can thus become the world’s first and only prosumer network that turns consumers into valuable prosumers for businesses.

A fascinating topic! How exactly is your mission shaped in terms of the technology you use?

On the basis of our multidimensional structured data and software architecture, we create an independently growing system, with which we synergetically link and relate economically relevant information. The global economic system is mapped in digital form, which promotes real data mining innovation, growth and knowledge on a global level. With the help of our independent multi-sided platform, this data can be used to efficiently develop and market products based on real customer needs.

Companies have the opportunity to present their company and product structure, to become part of the network, to receive evaluations and statistics on consumption-related data and to participate in automatically generated recommendation marketing. Vimbee offers companies of all sizes the opportunity to efficiently gain trust and maximum reach for new customer acquisition based on each individual consumer interaction.

Consumers can easily find desired product and service information in terms of location, price, availability and quality and compare it with the opinions of others in seconds. In addition, it is possible to exert a lasting influence on companies by expressing one’s own opinion.

What do you do differently than tools that also collect feedback, for example?

We offer our users 5 great advantages. Firstly, we make it possible to communicate information in a targeted manner and to record it. In the process, companies can use the user-generated content commercially and transparently.

Secondly, all information is available in real-time and language-independent. This is a great advantage. Every company and every consumer can use Vimbee.

Furthermore, we are very proud of our own cloud structure. It reduces the amount of data to a minimum by allowing information about products and companies to be stored in the system only once, but linked as often as you like. Companies can use our platform to display their real-world relationships in a digital and scalable way.

The fourth advantage is the communication between consumer and company. They are given the opportunity to communicate on the basis of individual products or services. Customer opinions and behaviour can now be recorded easily and quickly. This is valuable information for sales promotion and for customer-oriented adaptation of the product portfolio.

The last advantage I would like to mention today is the increase in the reach of the companies. This works on the basis of consumer interaction. Within the platform, product placements are set by the earned content. Since communication can take place on the basis of individual products, it is not possible to devalue an entire company due to defects in a product.

Compared to all American or Chinese companies, we create a transparent and accessible open economy data for a successful circular economy of the global economic system. With our data architecture, we create big-smart data that belongs directly to consumers and companies and serves the public good.

You do not offer paid advertising within the platform. What pricing model do you use for Vimbee?

Revenues are mainly generated by the registered companies, which can set up and administer their company and product structure and thereby gain access to customer information. We have different packages.

As an entry opportunity, a Freemium Package allows companies to administer a maximum of 10 product profiles free of charge. The range of functions can only be extended by switching to one of the six fee-based packages, the main difference being the number of product or service profiles that can be administered. The offer ranges from 10 to a maximum of 1,000 profiles and is thus accessible to companies of all sizes.

Optionally, the packages can be extended with additional profiles. The basic package will cost 19.99 € per month. The planned price for the most extensive package is 799 € per month. The optional coverage increase through product placements and deals will be billed in the style of common affiliate systems. This gives companies the opportunity to limit costs from the outset by setting budgets.

For consumers, the use of the platform and the corresponding app will be free of charge.

You have already mentioned that Vimbee is suitable for businesses of all sizes. What market segments are you addressing exactly?

Based on the products offered, our business can be allocated to the following sub-segments: Online information procurement, reputation platforms, corporate communications (CRM), affiliate marketing, market and media research. It can be used by any company worldwide. Vimbee does not require critical mass as a platform and can be launched directly with the first customer or consumer. Because of the features I mentioned earlier, there is an extremely large market volume.

For business-to-business, we offer a cross-platform and product-based architecture that provides a central overview of all data that can be found in individual products and in retail.

At the same time, we provide the business-to-consumer sector with a direct product-related communication channel between consumers and manufacturers and offer a unique, multilingual data architecture with which all relevant information about consumers, their opinions and their consumer behavior can be structured and analyzed in real time. This is unique and at the same time without violating data protection regulations.

Is Vimbee already usable?

In the past 4 years the software has been developed so far that we are close to release. A beta version can already be demonstrated. The node system (software architecture and database) with all functions for back- and front-end is up to 80% ready.

Furthermore we have shown the demo app to customers and potential customers and their feedback has been very positive. After they recognized the centralized and clear structure, they were very interested and asked for updates for the implementation. We are also working on new features like shops, deals, chat functions, statistics and evaluations.

Ehsan, many thanks for this exciting interview! We wish you continued success for the launch of Vimbee and hope to hear a lot more from you!

You want to support Vimbee? Please take a closer look at their Innoloft profile or contact them via our Messenger.