These three deep-tech start-ups won the StartUp Challenge 2023: irmos technologies AG, Synthara AG, Swistor SA
The 11th Swisscom StartUp Challenge is looking for deep tech start-ups. With their solutions in the areas of industry, robotics, space, fintech, agtech, edtech, smart cities and clean tech, they make an active contribution to social issues such as climate protection, education and location attractiveness. Swisscom supports the finalists and winners during the growth phase by networking with investors, mentors and companies in Switzerland and Silicon Valley.
Because although Switzerland is one of the most innovative countries in the world, we lag behind when it comes to financing the growth of deep tech companies. Time to change that. Together as the Deep Tech Nation Switzerland.
Irmos Technologies aims to maximize the safe operational life of existing bridges based on data. While every second bridge in Europe has exceeded its expiration date, maintenance today relies on visual inspections. As a result, maintenance is often insufficient or expensive. Irmos’ solution empowers engineers to monitor the structural health of bridges, reducing maintenance costs and environmental impact and at the same time improving safety.
Swistor SA is a Cleantech start-up developing innovative energy storage devices for consumer portable electronics, autonomous IoT sensor nodes, space applications and at a later stage for the grid. The EPFL spin-off technology enables ultra-fast charging devices that combine high energy storage capabilities with high-power delivery capabilities, to enable the next generation of energy storage devices and provide a long lasting and environmentally friendly solution that aims to make energy storage sustainable.
Synthara is a semiconductor AI company working on a new breed of edge-AI chips that eliminate the trade-off between performance and energy efficiency. Their technology is a result of years of interdisciplinary R&D in system architecture, neuroscience and neural networks at the Institute of Neuroinformatics (University of Zürich and ETH Zürich). Synthara's first product, ComputeRAM™, is a game-changer in the field of computational memory technology.
Calvin Risk develops comprehensive, quantitative solutions to assess and manage the risks of AI algorithms in commercial use. The tool helps companies create a framework for transparency, governance and standardisation to manage their AI portfolios while ensuring that AI remains safe and compliant with the highest ethical standards and upcoming regulatory requirements.
With its data-driven approach and a deep understanding of risk, Correntics helps its clients to future-proof their supply chains and improve their financial resilience in the face of climate change and emerging risks. The Zurich based company empowers its clients to adapt and strive in a changing risk landscape.
ESGgo is an AI-powered operating system for sustainability With ESGgo companies can calculate CO2 emissions, survey suppliers, report using any ESG framework or regulation, benchmark against competitors, and generate sustainability reports with AI. Manage CSRD readiness, supplier ESG, KPIs, and gain insights into which country, or product contributes the most to your sustainability.
HOPR is a Zurich-based startup building digital infrastructure. The HOPR protocol lets companies and users protect their data thanks to its one-of-a-kind incentivized mixnet. Launched in 2020, HOPR is now creating a suite of products and services on top of its core protocol to build the digital privacy landscape of tomorrow.
Miraex develops a quantum interconnect platform for broadband entanglement that will address two major challenges facing the quantum computing and quantum communication industries: qubit count scale up for distributed quantum computing applications in areas such as drug development, renewable energy or climate change modelling, and the long-term use of these quantum resources in future quantum networks.
Sevensense builds the eyes and brains for mobile robots whose vision and intelligence empower manufacturers of manually operated vehicles to become providers of smart robots. The ETH Zurich spin-off envisions a world in which repetitive, dangerous, and unhygienic jobs in factories, warehouses, and public spaces will be carried out by robots equipped with their technology. The Sevensense navigation solution is based on over 15 years of research.
TerraRad is pioneering non-contact soil moisture mapping technology for precision agriculture and golf course management. Its patented sensor, mounted on vehicles or drones, is based on earth observation remote sensing technology from NASA and ESA. Packaged with their software subscription, TerraRad provides actionable data for precision irrigation, leading to significant savings of water and chemicals. The startup company is a spinoff from the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest Snow and Landscape Research (WSL).
Almer focuses on bringing High-Tech augmented reality glasses using Swiss-made hardware/software to businesses. Almer Technologies is currently offering its remote assistance service to companies with subsidiaries all over the world. With its service, Almer alleviates several problems that companies face: time spent by an expert to go to a foreign subsidiary; the expert's transportation costs; and finally reducing the company's carbon footprint. Almer Technologies is therefore focusing on a B2B market and wants to diversify its B2B use cases in the medium to long term.
ECCO2’s reduces heating energy consumption in buildings by an average of 15% with an IoT/AI/data-based solution, and compiles ESG-relevant building data. Institutional real estate owners are challenged by high energy consumption. Energy cost, legal obligations, and social pressure are real pains. Energy efficiency impacts market value for tenants and investors. ECCO2 Solution is fast, affordable, fits anywhere and is subsidized by Swiss government.
Mobileup is a platform for selling and buying used smartphones and tablets. All devices come with a 12-month warranty and 30 days right to return. When it comes to buying a refurbished device, price and product range are key factors for customers. Thus, we established APIs to the largest European suppliers of refurbished smartphones and tablets. Our algorithm identifies the devices with the best price-quality-ratio. This mechanism helps to match our supply with the customer's demand.
SmartHelio is the fastest growing cleantech data intelligence company in the world. A Bcorp and Y Combinator company, their solution is used by top solar developers in Europe, Asia and USA to make solar assets profitable and sustainable. Having invested $15 Mn in R&D, they have developed a software which predicts faults in solar PV plants in real-time to prevent downtime and increase revenue up to 10%.
Swiss Vault is a data innovation company that helps the world efficiently manage their data forever with low environmental impact. Our mission is to provide organizations with technology that combines hardware and software solutions for better, economical, resilient and environmentally sustainable data management.
The Acceleration Programme is individually tailored to your specific needs and objectives.
Support and mentoring by Swisscom experts and partners.
Access to applications and existing Swisscom services and infrastructure in Switzerland, also in areas close to the customers.
Building a network of potential customers and business partners. Consideration given to an investment from Swisscom Ventures. Possibility of a pilot project with Swisscom.
«The Startup Challenge has brought us a decisive step forward on our growth path.»
Jürgen Biefang, Head of Marketing and Sales
ECCO2 Solutions AG, Swisscom StartUp Challenge Winner 2022
«I was thrilled by the commitment and level of support the entire Swisscom team has invested into the startup challenge to help us and fellow startups along our journey.»
Max Lüpertz, Sales Director
Code Intelligence GmbH StartUp Challenge Winner 2021
«I never imagined that the Swisscom StartUp Challenge would provide myself and qiio with such an abundance of insights.»
Felix Adamcyk, CEO qiio
StartUp Challenge Winner 2020
«We received valuable feedback on our future developments and increased our network to possible partners and customers.»
Dominic Jud, ETH Robotic Systems Lab
StartUp Challenge Winner 2020
«Our collaboration with Swisscom is always very supportive and is based on trust and respect. »
Stefan Merz, CEO of Swisscom Venture
SEC Consult (Schweiz) AG
25 April - 11 June 2023
Your Startup offers a deep tech solution? Then apply now.
12 June – 3 September 2023
Swisscom will select the 10 finalists from all applications.
29 August 2023
The 10 finalists will benefit from "pitch training" with Swisscom and Venturelab (remote option).
4 September 2023
Announcement of the 10 finalists
4 - 21 September 2023
The audience will vote online for their favourite.
21 September 2023
The 10 finalists pitch in front of the jury (remote option).
21 September 2023
Announcement of the three winners
22 September 2023
Short briefing on the Acceleration Programme
The preparations have now been started. The collaboration begins.
Acceleration Programme Swisscom Outpost Silicon Valley
Dates will be arranged individually with the 3 winners.
The jury consists of members of the Swisscom Group Executive Board and top management, tech experts, Swisscom Ventures and our programme partner Venturelab, among others. The topic experts from Swisscom and Venturelab will accompany the three winners during the Acceleration Programme.
Lecturer for innovation & sustainability, ETH Zürich / Professor for social entrepreneurship, Bern University