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Swisscom StartUp Challenge 2021

Boosting the future of cyber security

Congratulations to our winners!

From 24 September, you will be able to watch all of the highlights from this year’s StartUp Challenge.

Cyber security, one of the most important issues in our decentralised digital world, is the focus for the Swisscom StartUp Challenge 2021. Over the last few weeks, start-ups and research teams from the field of cyber security have been submitting their applications to us.

They are aiming to win an exploration programme with Swisscom’s cyber security community by impressing judges and voters with their products, prototypes and solutions.

the highlights


Code Intelligence GmbH


Grip Security Ltd.

xorlab AG


What's in store for winners during the exploration programme?

Access to security infrastructure

Access to security applications and existing Swisscom Services as well as the infrastructure used in the customer environment.


Building a network of potential customers and business partners. Consideration given to an investment from Swisscom Ventures.

Access to security Community

Support and mentoring from Swisscom cyber security experts and partners.

New cooperation opportunities

Exploration programme and invitation to our Swisscom Outpost in Silicon Valley (US) for a selected start-up.

Applicant requirements

  • A cyber security prototype, product or solution
  • The team must be able to present a fully functioning prototype or product during the exploration programme (in the Swisscom environment if appropriate).
  • The application must be usable in Switzerland
  • An ambitious and visionary research or start-up team

What’s in store for the 5 winners?

  • A one-week exploration programme with Swisscom’s Cyber Security Community and access to Swisscom’s infrastructure (remote option)
  • Mentoring from Swisscom cyber security experts and partners
  • Development of marketing and sales skills
  • Individual pitch training and coaching from our partner Venturelab
  • Discussion of cyber security experiences with leading entrepreneurs and venture capitalists
  • Building a network of potential customers and business partners
  • Consideration given to a business partnership with Swisscom and investment from Swisscom Ventures
  • Invitation and network building for a selected start-up at our Swisscom Outpost in Silicon Valley (US) The programme will be tailored to the individual needs of the start-up.
  • «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


17 May bis 4 July 2021


Submit your application with your security case from the field of cyber security at

5 July to 31 August 2021


Swisscom selects the 10 most interesting cases from all applications

1 September 2021

The 10 finalists are announced


Preparation for the finals with Venturelab (remote option)

1 to 16 September 2021

Public voting

Members of the general public vote online for their favourite

16 September 2021


The 10 finalists present their pitch to the panel (remote option)

16 September 2021

The 5 winners are announced

21 September 2021

Exploration briefing on the exploration programme (remote)

4 October 2021

Individual briefing on the exploration programme (remote)

Preperation gets underway. The joint collaboration begins.

24 to 28 January 2022

Exploration programme with Swisscom's cyber security community experts (Remote Option)

There is a brief profile of the winners and finalists below. You can see previous finalists and winners in the Hall of Fame.


  • asvin provides cybersecurity as service tools for vendors and operators in internet of things to manage security and regulatory challenges for their connected business:

    • Online dashboard to control the cybersecurity state and risk of device fleets
    • Roll out updates over the air flor large IoT fleets
    • Monitoring device behavior for early detection of cyberattacks
    • Distributed ledger to log activities in the software supply chain for liability and forensic

    Next Level Data Privacy: safe & secure transfer of data. End-to-end encryption leaks meta-data, such as who is exchanging data, when etc. The HOPR protocol is a layer-0 privacy foundation for anyone to build on, providing network-level and meta-data privacy for every kind of data exchange. Our mixnet protects the identity of sender & recipient by routing data via multiple intermediate relay hops.

  • 127 new IoT devices are connected to the Internet every second - most of them vulnerable to attacks. Although 67% of organizations have experienced security incidents related to IoT devices, IoT security remains a blind spot in many companies. At IoT Inspector, our mission is to #makeIoTsecure – with our leading solution for automated security analysis and compliance checks of IoT firmware.

    The Swiss Collaboration App for Business Privacy, All-in-One, Easy to Use. The solution for Executives, Board Members, Legal and Financial staff, To share confidential information, negotiate, approve, Inside & outside of your organization, Anywhere, anytime, any device. The Swiss Alternative to the Big Techs, Using App-to-App Encryption with decentralised keys for true privacy, Encrypting everything to disclose nothing!

  • Data-driven organizations realize that their own data is not enough to make sound decisions, but they cannot engage in data collaborations due to privacy regulations or fear of data leaks. Tune Insight B2B software helps organizations make better decisions with collaborative analytics and ML from confidential data collaborations, while each of them remains in full control of its own data.

The Swisscom StartUp Challenge’s jury and mentors

The jury includes members of the Swisscom Group Executive Board and Swisscom Security Group and representatives from Swisscom Ventures and our programme partner Venturelab. During the Exploration Week, cyber security experts from Swisscom and our programme partner will provide support and guidance to the winners.

  • roger-wüthrich-hasenböhler-portrait

    Roger Wüthrich-Hasenböhler

    Chief Digital Officer, Swisscom

    jurybild philippe vuilleumier


    Head of Group Security, Swisscom



    Head of Exploration, Swisscom ​


    jurybild cyrill peter


    Head of Cyber Security Services, Field CTO, Swisscom


    jurybild dusan vuksanovic


    Security Director and Advisor, Swisscom


  • egon-steinkasserer-portrait


    Chief Technology Officer B2B, Swisscom


    Dominique Mégret

    Head of Swisscom Ventures, Swisscom


    jurybild marcus dahlen


    VP Cyber Security & CISO at Swisscom Outpost


    Friederike Hoffmann

    Head of Connected Business Solutions, Swisscom



    Co-Managing Director, Venturelab

Program partner

Media partner

Outreach partner

More insights


The winners of the StartUp Challenge 2020

In 2020, the Swisscom StartUp Challenge was open to start-ups from around the world for the first time. The competition called for 5G applications and prototypes. On 17 December, the ten best start-ups from among more than 125 applicants from 30 different countries pitched their ideas to the jury. Learn more about the five winners.


Swisscom StartUp Challenge: Fotokite provides more insights for rescue workers

For Fotokite, winning the Swisscom StartUp Challenge 2020 came at the right time. The three-month exploration phase allows the start-up to explore the possibilities offered by 5G for its tethered drones for rescue workers. In addition, new perspectives open up on the business side.