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YES!Delft top 10 startups success stories

TOP 10 TECH STARTUP SUCCESS STORIES: JUNE

On 26th of June, we celebrated the 5th edition of our signature startup showcase event – Meet the Startups. We welcomed over 250 corporate partners, investors, mentors, journalists, and entrepreneurs to take a look at the best cutting edge tech and startups YES!Delft has to offer. In an Innovation Playground, all the guests could try the prototypes of Warp VR, Somnox, Kitepower, Nurt.Io, Manometric, Momo Medical, Scoozy, Dental Robotics. Meaning they could even test-drive the mobility scooter of Scoozy, try out a VR experience with Warp VR or even sooth their emotions – almost falling asleep – by hugging the sleep robot of Somnox.

Afterwards, they were dazzled by the pitches of Momo Medical, BI/OND, VideowindoW, Qlayers, Dutch Analytics, and Warp VR. The captivated audience was entertained by MtS host Gerrit H – Mr. Red Sneakers – with an ongoing quiz about the pitches and calls to action presented. The sharpest audience member was awarded a Somnox sleep robot for his knowledge about the ecosystem. Even more, the latest batch of Accelerator startups was there with a stand and everybody could talk with them! Make sure to not miss the next edition!


As temperatures rise, Meet the Startups is not the only time when we show the success of our tech startups! YES!Delft startups celebrate soaring success as time passes by! Read all about it in the top 10 tech startup success stories of this month!
1. Warp VR

This Accelerator alumnus announced a collaboration with YES!Delft partner Tata Steel on stage at Meet the Startups. Together they will utilize Warp VR’s virtual reality training technology for safety in IJmuiden location. In spring, Warp VR developed a first virtual reality training after doing a workshop with the Tata Steel safety team. After the success of the first training, they will continue to develop several safety scenarios for training which will eventually be used to train large groups of up to 2000 Tata Steel employees.

YES!Delft – Meet The Startups | Erkan Goenee (Tata Steel) & Guido Helmerhorst (Warp VR) | © Verkijk
2. Aidx Medical

Last year’s EIT Health Validation Lab winner impressed with their technology. They aim to make malaria detection cheaper, faster, accessible to all and more reliable. And the AidX team continues to impress, as they were rewarded 50k EUR by EIT Health Belgium-Netherlands through their Headstart Funding program.

 

3.  Nowi Energy

Huawei has joined forces with this Accelerator alumnus and will be showcasing their energy harvesting solution at MWC Shanghai 2019. Nowi is a pioneer in novel energy harvesting technology. Their technology enables the capturing of ambient energy sources such as light, temperature gradients or radio frequency, with the highest efficiency.

 

Join the Accelerator Program!

4. Manometric

Validation Lab and Accelerator alumnus Manometric was one of the startups on the Innovation Playground, where they showcased their 3D hand scanner. Moreover, the MedTech startup won the Vereniging Samenwerkende Topklinische Ziekenhuizen (STZ) Innovation Challenge. The impact and scalability of the product impressed the jury. There Manometric won 3500 EUR to support the further validation of their product.

 

Join the ComplexTech Validation Lab!

 

5. Nightbalance

Nightbalance founder Eline Vrijland-Van Beest, who was named one of the MIT 35 under 35, wrote about her seven biggest learnings for MedTech product development. Founded in 2009, the MedTech startup and Accelerator alumnus developed their Sleep Position Trainer (SPT). This device is a comfortable and easy to use treatment alternative for people who suffer from positional obstructive sleep apnea. Nightbalance was ultimately acquired by Philips in 2018.

 

6. Kitepower

You could hardly have missed the kite spanning almost 14 meters in the Innovation Playground. This CleanTech startup now announced the continuation of their collaboration with the Dutch Ministry of Defense. In 2016 they won the ministry’s Innovation Competition. The Validation Lab and Accelerator alumnus can efficiently reduce the number of diesel generators deployed by Defence during field exercises. This means on a yearly basis, one Kitepower unit can save up to 150.000 liters of diesel and 400 tons of CO2.

 

YES!Delft Kitepower top 10 tech startup success stories
YES!Delft – Meet The Startups | Kitepower on the Innovation Playground | © Verkijk

 

7. DAB

BioTech startup and Accelerator alumnus DAB raised 2M EUR in Series A funding from FORWARD.one and InnovationQuarter to accelerate the production of bio-based chemicals and advanced fuels. As a result, DAB can continue developing innovative bioreactor technology that increases the productivity of fermentation processes and at the same time reduces operational costs. With the funding, the startup is looking to commercialize its proprietary bioreactor technology that accelerates the transition to a biobased economy.

 

8. VSParticle

ComplexTech startup VSParticle was named one of the ten winners in the Academic Startup Competition, out of the 28 startups competing. All winners first pitched at GES 2019. Now, all the winning startups will travel Silicon Valley, courtesy of the Dutch Ministry of Economic affairs, to learn how to scale their innovations faster.

9. Atmos UAV

The Aviation startup and Accelerator alumnus has announced that Rene Worms, former Managing Director of Topcon Positioning Europe, will be joining as Head of Global Sales. Together they will work on the international expansion of the professional vertical take-off landing (VTOL) mapping and surveying (fixed wing) drone Marlyn, which is known for its accuracy, ease of use, and highest wind resistance in its class.

 

Join the Accelerator Program!

 

10. McNetiq

BNR’s annual Green Quest Award looks for the most sustainable entrepreneurs, and Accelerator alumnus McNetiq has been nominated. Their magnetic Controlock scaffold anchor can cuts costs by reducing energy usage, the anchors can be reused indefinitely and the application is toxin free. McNetiq is up for the Audience Award, and you can vote for them here! The grand winner will be announced at the grand life show on July 1st.

 

Do you want to share your own startup success story? Tip our PR Coordinator Nan de Bruin on nan@yesdelft.nl for the next top 10 tech startup success stories.
Presenting the new YES!Delft Accelerator batch

YES!Delft Accelerator Batch 2019

We are presenting the new YES!Delft Accelerator Batch! These startups finished the Accelerator program and are ready to take on the world and beyond. From drones fighting insect infestations in greenhouses to tech reducing noise pollution and the high tech treatment of skeletal misalignment. These seven startups are ready to change the world with their innovative ideas. Come take a closer look at the innovations that soon might be part of your home, or flying high, all the way to Mars.
Gyrafit makes skeletal misalignment treatment easy for all
VideoWindoW - YES!Delft Accelerator
Justin Fourie – Co-Founder Gyrafit

Skeletal misalignment is surprisingly more common than most people think, misalignment in the feet alone affects over 45% of the world population. The feet are the foundation of the entire skeletal structure and if left untreated leads to chronic pain in knees, hips, lower back or legs, and if left untreated increases the chances of getting osteoarthritis in the knees and hip by 55%.

For a truly unique solution, they have combined hardware and AI enabled software to offer a complete solution.

Gyrafits G-Script is a fully adjustable insole orthotic that can correct misalignment in the feet up to 8 degrees and can be adjusted at the point of diagnosis. Their new full body digital measuring and diagnosis booth solution; G-Pod, promises to change the way we access and measure alignment correction, making the treatment available through new, alternate and more accessible sales channels.

The complete treatment solution promises to reduce end-user cost by more than 60% and take the time from diagnosis to treatment application from 2 weeks to under 30 minutes.

Making Gyrafits skeletal misalignment treatment solution; faster, cheaper and simpler.

 

ARCEON: Trip to the moon and beyond
Rahul Shirke – Founder & Director ARCEON

ARCEON-Novel Elements was established by Rahul Shirke and Bernhard Heidenreich in 2018. We are developing novel and advanced ceramic matrix composite (CMC). Our pilot project will travel to our one and only natural satellite- The Moon. This project allows us to prove the credibility of our innovation. The material is unique because it can withstand a wide range of temperature (from cryogenic to 1600 °C and above) at near zero thermal expansion, high specific strength, corrosion resistance and, most importantly: it is 25% lighter than aluminum alloys. Due to the lack of polymers, it is also stable for long-term in space environment, which is characterized by vacuum and irradiation.

“We believe that our material has tremendous potential, not only in the aerospace but also energy, high-tech, and automobile industry. ARCEON family includes scientific, engineering and business development experts in the field of innovative materials with international experience. Our vision is to push the limits and deliver high-quality novel materials.”

Rahul Shirke, ARCEON

 

Join the Accelerator program!

Apply before August 15

PATS Indoor Drone Solutions: Drones fight golden twin-spot moth in gerbera and chrysanthemum
PATS Indoor Drone Solutions- YES!Delft Accelerator
Bram Tijmons (Co-Founder, CEO)

Flying insects are getting a new and sustainable enemy. The control of insect pests now mainly takes place with the help of (bio) chemical and biological agents. PATS Indoor Drone Solutions, a spin-off from Delft University of Technology, is changing that with small drones that automate pest control and prevention. Through a pilot project aimed at combating the golden twin-spot moth (Chrysodeixis chalcites), a number of innovative gerbera growers are taking advantage of this development to remain at the forefront of sustainable cultivation and cultivation knowledge.

PATS sees its technology not only as a supplement to the current package of resources. In the long term, the system must also reduce substance use for specific pests and it is expected that the grower will have to spend less time scouting and combating pests. 

“The aim is to fully implement the fight against the golden twin-spot moth, for example, using our system, precisely because of the preventive approach we use. In addition, our solution does not conflict with the biological control of other pests through targeted control of the moth itself.”

Bram Tijmons, PATS Indoor Drone Solutions

 

Smart-Ship sets sail on the maritime market!
Brent Kok (Co-Founder, CFO), Roy Kok (CO-Founder, CEO) & Jelle Tiemensma (CO-Founder, CTO)

Smart-Ship is setting sail to disrupt the maritime market! Through the application of haptic feedback technology, Smart-Ship is aiming to optimize the interaction between man and machine. By making information transfer to the operators of ships faster and more intuitive, safety and sustainability in maritime operations can be improved. Applications range from small fast ships to offshore and dredging operations, tugs and simulations. 

 

Braindrop: Notre Dame Cathedral could have been saved originally!
Mustafa Torun (Director) & Ugur Kizilkaya (Founder)

“We, as Braindrop BV, Netherlands, June 2019, have released a revolution which avoids new “Notre Dame catastrophes” forever. It is the strongest and 100% nontoxic fire protection chemical agent which makes anything fireproof easily. So strong that one can apply to his hand and put his hand into the fire!

Every 88 seconds one person die because of fires and billions of dollars damage occurs to the global economy every year. We lose lives, environment, and prosperity like monuments.

The main concern of existing flame retardants is their toxic feature and that they destroy slowly even if they stop fires. Our product TNF now is the single best solution which assures these concerns and provides the lifelong durable fire resistance for people, companies, and governments.” 

 

Join the Accelerator Program!

Apply before August 15

VideowindoW from Vintage to Future
VideoWindoW - YES!Delft Accelerator
Remco Veenbrink (Founder, CEO) & Mark Oudenhoven (Founder, CFO)

Unlike most hardware startups these founders do not have a degree in engineering –one is an artist and the other an economist. All knowledge is self-taught by tactical learning: ‘to know just enough to challenge existing beliefs and rock the status quo on how to approach further development’ thus Remco Veenbrink. Their innovation is based on available parts engineering added with state of the art electronics and algorithms to create a minimum viable product. Mark Oudenhoven: ‘We implement continuous improvement and focus on strategic growth’ Their primary market segment is airports for which they recently contracted Rotterdam The Hague Airport as their launching customer. VideowindoW is a glare control system embedded into the exterior glass that doubles as a transparent video screen. He adds:’ This way glare control can even be a profit driver for airports’. With airports being their focus international expansion is a logical next step.

‘Passengers can enjoy artistic or commercial content and look outside when they focus beyond the glass layer’.

Remco Veenbrink, VideowindoW

 

DeNoize – “Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – For Buildings”
DeNoize - YES!Delft Accelerator
Aman Jindal (Founder, CEO)

Noise is frequently cited as one of the leading causes of stress in city life. People living near airports and busy roads complain that they can never relax because of the intrusive sound. Their experiences are reflected in higher levels of mental ill-health, and physical problems like high blood pressure, strokes and early onset of cardiovascular diseases.

DeNoize, a complex-tech startup from the YES!Delft claims to have found a better solution. They have developed an active noise cancellation technology for building facades, promising at least 90% additional reduction against the outdoor noise. Their innovation paved their path to the finals of Philips Innovation Awards and a special feature in the BBC’s science podcast, “The Naked Scientist”. The DeNoize team is working hard to commercialize its technology and aims to finish the market-ready product within a year.

 

Join the Accelerator Program!

Apply before August 15

 

Interested in these startups and their products? Get in touch with PR Coordinator Nan de Bruin on nan@yesdelft.nl

 

YES!Delft at the Odyssey Hackathon 2019

As part of our partnership, YES!Delft visited the Odyssey Hackathon in Groningen, the largest AI and Blockchain hackathon in the world. Managing Director of YES!Delft The Hague Ras Lalmy, Technical Director for the Blockchain Focus Area Neil Smyth, Focus Area Manager for AI Noor Figdor attended the hackathon as jedis.

 

From Friday until Sunday, 100 teams battled it out 20 different challenges. In the 48 hours allotted, the teams looked for AI and Blockchain solutions for anything from Tokenizing Ecosystems to Crisis & Disaster Management. The ambitious challenges attracted many ambitious teams, of which our very own,  Circularise and Mythronics.

 

Apply to the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab

 

And the winner is….

Circularise is one of the startups that have moved to the YES!Delft The Hague. They are working on solving communication barriers in the value chain with blockchain technology to enable a circular economy. In Groningen, the Circularise team was victorious in the Tokenizing Ecosystems track.  They worked on visualizing investments in open source protocols for investors, and generating smart contracts that run the protocols, allocate transaction fees, and govern a voting system.

Mythronics, one of our Accelerator program alumni, was awarded the second place in the Fossil Free Future track! The team created a solution for households with solar panels to confidently certify their solar energy production and provide accurate insight for the entire ecosystem in household energy production.


“It’s great to see YES!Delft startups Circularise and Mythronics do so well at the Odyssey Hackathon. It has been a tremendous experience for everyone, a huge amount of positive energy from all kinds of participants who are driven to re-imagine how we solve societies challenges. Well done to Rutger and the team on bringing all the people together!

Neil Smyth, Technical Director for the Blockchain Focus Area

 

The power of team

For startups, the team is essential for success. This becomes even more clear in a pressure cooker environment like a hackathon. We spoke to Socialtec: a team of three colleagues, a family member of the team captain, and two other guys that flew in from Berlin. How is that for teamwork? They were part of the Inclusive Banking track developing a way to transition to a local, circular and inclusive economy.

 

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So instead of exchanging money for goods and services, their answer is an app where people can easily trade and asses their offerings. This means there would be an ecosystem that allows you to exchange whatever you have in abundance. We bartered a handful of our YES! bars with team captain Michiel for his pitch.

“All the offers on our network are available through blockchain. Because there is an issue in peer2peer networks because you cannot see the entire system. Therefore you have to centralize this information on some medium, so you can access it, but then who owns it? That’s where blockchain comes in. We put the offers on the blockchain so that it’s centralized in a decentralized way.  These are the words of our smart developer who was smiling when he was explaining it to us.”

Michiel Heij, SocialTec Team Captain

Another team that caught our attention were the Future Fire Fighters team, who only met in real life on the first day. Even though two team members that participated in the last year’s hackathon, this year they teamed up with one Italian girl and two Bulgarian guys. Their solution to help emergency responders make faster and safer decisions. Their solution was to collect and analyze information from both closed and open data streams. With this they won the Crisis & Disaster Management track.  

“The next step is to realize the potential in the teams and ideas from the hackathon. Here I believe that YES!Delft can play a key role with our proven startup Validation Labs together with our new Digital Hub in The Hague focused on AI and Blockchain.  Our goal is to make the Digital ecosystem in The Hague a vibrant reality – and these challenge winners are clear examples of ideas that we can help realise so I encourage them to apply for our upcoming AI/BC Validation Lab. An inspirational 5 days but only the first step!”

Neil Smyth, Technical Director for the Blockchain Focus Area

 

Apply to the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab

Interview with Tjarda Voorneman – EIT Health Validation Lab

Tjarda Voorneman – the Project Manager of EIT Health Validation Lab that takes place in Delft for more than four years  – talks about the successes of the collaboration between EIT Health and YES!Delft in this period.
This year we are again proud to organize the EIT Health Validation Lab in our incubator in Delft! The unique two-month pressure cooker program allows aspiring entrepreneurs from all over Europe all the way to Delft in The Netherlands to discover the business potential of their MedTech ideas. Tjarda Voorneman, the project manager of EIT Health Validation Lab looks back ahead of the 5th edition.

 

After 4 successful editions EIT Health Validation Lab, what has changed?

“One of the amazing things that have happened over the course of the last four editions, is the steady growth of the European network. This results in new and powerful partnerships from which everyone benefits. We have many great partners in this program, such as TU Delft, LUMC, UMCG, Biocat, Copenhagen University, and FAU Erlangen- Nurnberg. In turn, this also attracts startups of course, not only in the Netherlands but from the whole of Europe. Since the start four years ago, the majority of European countries have been represented in the program.”

“We have many great partners in this program, such as TU Delft, LUMC, UMCG, Biocat, Copenhagen University, and FAU Erlangen- Nurnberg. ”

Tjarda Voorneman, Project Manager EIT Health Validation Lab

What is it that makes the program so successful?

“The power of the program is the process of validation. EIT has ideation events, such as the Innovation Days and Summer Schools. Validation Lab is a very logical next step from that. We have a strong core program here in Delft that yields results. This is why Validation Lab is one of the Bootcamps offered now in the EIT innovation funnel. The teams get the chance to travel through Europe to validate their business assumptions further, which is an incredibly valuable and rewarding experience. The extensive EIT network is highly beneficial for this.”

 

 Explore and validate your MedTech ideas

Apply to EIT Health Validation Lab in Delft

Deadline June 17, 2019

 

There have been many excellent entries in the EIT Health Validation Lab, what are the criteria for winning?

“Winning is not just about having an amazing product, but it’s mostly about how the team has gone through the process of validation. The main goal is finding a product-market fit, and it’s amazing to see how the teams manage to make such massive strides on a European level in such a relatively short time.

Last year’s winners, Smart Medical Optics, are a prime example of this. Through the course of the validation program, they realized they needed to pivot in terms of their beachhead market. They started to focus on research institutions in Europe, which really helped them take off. Participation in EIT Health Validation Lab can help you grow really rapidly. When you go through the process of validation well, you could be pitching before an audience of a thousand peers from the medical sector.” 

EIT Health Validation Lab Delft
Smart Medical Optics – Winner EIT Health Validation Lab 2018

“The most valuable lesson for us was market-fit: we found potential launching customers not only in Africa, but also in Europe. The Validation Lab really challenged us to think critically about our ambitions and business plan and identify our a beachhead market – Europe. Our ultimate ambition is still to make an accurate and fast malaria diagnosis available in remote parts of the African continent. But the European market is also interesting for our technology – research institutes working with malaria benefit from the fast and accurate reading of blood samples.”

Mirthe Vendel , co-founder Smart Medical Optics

EIT Health Validation Lab draws an international selection of startups, but also from different backgrounds. How important is this diversity?

“During Validation Lab the teams learn a lot from each other. Not only about their countries and the medical fields there but also about the different backgrounds. Some teams are already fully fledged companies. Others are working on projects within major European universities and then some are fresh graduates. They all have different experiences, different perspectives and that enriches the Validation Lab environment. For example, pitching is a skill very central to Validation Lab, and the levels of experience can vary incredibly. To me, it’s amazing to see the journey of all the participants.”

 

Apply to EIT Health Validation Lab

Deadline June 17, 2019

The startup mentor with customer perspective

Jan Willem Klerkx – entrepreneur, investor, and startup mentor of a number of YES!Delft startups – is the type of person that helps a company become a success story. With an academic background in Technology Management and early professional experience in IT sales, he quickly discovered that what he was actually meant to do is help businesses grow.

The revelation came early on in his career. He was asked to lead a small IT company that, at the time, was closing the year with a loss, so he made it his goal to turn it around. A few years of hard work later, that company was as profitable as never before. The thing was that, although the team already had a good business strategy before Jan Willem took over, it was simply not successful in executing it.

Strategy without customer-focused execution has little value, Jan Willem learned.  

“As I was helping that business grow by making the company more customer-oriented, I realized that I was sitting on the wrong side of the table at the quarterly shareholders meeting. I was making a lot of money for the shareholders, while taking home the same paycheck every month. That didn’t feel optimal,” Jan Willem recalls.

That was the point where he decided to develop his own approach. “I decided to look for companies with a great vision, excellent tech team, and technology, but with little focus on customers or little experience in sales. Then I’d invest money in exchange for equity, and work with the existing team on making them profitable.”

He told those teams that a great technology by itself does not lead to a great product. And even a great product does not equal a great company. A company should put all efforts and finding the right product-market fit, and once that’s done, turn early customers into ambassadors.

Over the past decade, Jan Willem has invested in and worked for five companies, two of which were acquired by Qualcomm, the world leader in developing 3G and mobile technologies. The first company, Euvision, was a market leader in image classification technology. The second, Scyfer was a leading company in Deep Learning, formed around Deep Learning celebrity Max Welling from the University of Amsterdam. One of the five ventures was focussed at elderly homecare and failed completely. The other two companies, SIG.eu and BONCode, are still in very good shape and growing.

As of four years ago, Jan Willem has also been active as a startup mentor at YES!Delft as well as at a number of other incubators. With a keen interest and expertise in artificial intelligence (AI), he is coaching startups as part of the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab at Delft-based incubator.

 

Apply for the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab

His experience is in helping find the best product-market fit. Finding that fit is not that easy, since most startups lack experience in sales or insight in how big corporates operate – and therefore have a hard time to really grasp the relevant part of customers’ feedback. On top of that, some startups tend to be so convinced of their technology or product that it does not help sales either. And in the mind of Jan Willem: “Sales is everything, the rest is cost”.

Nowi, a YES!Delft startup developing climate sensors powered by WiFi, 4G and GSM signals, is one of the tech startups that has taken much of Jan Willem’s advice to heart. And especially so when it comes to their business model. While they used to focus on product sales as a sole revenue stream, they have recently established a second one: working directly with clients on applying their technology to various products.
“We already generate some revenues by applying our knowledge on energy harvesting and by developing the so-called ‘Plug & Forget’ sensors in pilot projects for various customers,” says Simon van der Jagt, CEO of Nowi. “Jan Willem has helped us with anything from business model ideation, to specific advice on how to best deal with a prospective large customer, or simply testing our assumptions with critical questions.”

To this day, Jan Willem remains a startup mentor to the team.

“I help startups get the customer perspective,” Jan Willem says. “Many of them have these huge dreams – and that’s great! But running a business is not a dream. It’s a lot of hard work of really understanding why customers might consider buying your stuff.”

 

Apply for the Complex Tech Validation Lab

YES!Delft The Hague Grand Opening

YES!Delft The Hague is the new branch of the incubator YES!Delft focused on Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain. It is located in the HeadQuarter building on the Wilhelmina van Pruisenweg, and the doors for tech startups opened in March 2019.

YES!Delft The Hague was opened by StartupDelta Special Envoy Constantijn van Oranje, YES!Delft managing director Evert Jaap Lugt, the Hague Alderman for Education, Knowledge Economy and International Affairs Saskia Bruines and the Delft alderman for Knowledge Economy Bas Vollebregt. The new Digital Hub has been realized in collaboration with the municipality of The Hague. At YES!Delft The Hague, ambitious and promising startups will accelerate the development of their innovations in Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain.

Experienced tech entrepreneur Ras Lalmy has taken up the position of managing director of YES!Delft The Hague:

“The focus of the new YES!Delft location in The Hague will be on two important technologies of the digital society: Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain. The Hague is the perfect location; close to relevant organizations such as government, business and knowledge institutions. Together with these parties, we are going to create a vital and highly innovative ecosystem for tech startups that want to make an impact.”

Key technologies

In the new Digital Hub of YES!Delft The Hague, the emphasis is on the technologies of Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain, the two key technologies of the digital society. The tailor-made programs of YES!Delft The Hague are aimed at enabling startups to grow as quickly as possible. At the same time, YES!Delft The Hague, together with its ecosystem, offers innovative programs for local businesses and government. In this way the brand new branch of YES!Delft will become the hub for technological innovation in the Netherlands.

Alderman Saskia Bruines adds:

“As the municipality, we are delighted with the arrival of YES!Delft to The Hague. This is because we are working on a strong regional knowledge economy. Close cooperation with universities and colleges of higher education plays an important role here because the entrepreneurs of tomorrow are trained within these institutions. YES!Delft is, therefore, a good addition to the economy in The Hague. In Delft, the organization has shown that it can create a large number of successful startups. “

The vision for the future

Meanwhile, the first startups have moved into the building, and the first specialized Artificial Intelligence & Blockchain program started on 21 February. In the Validation Lab program, startups test and prepare their products for the market. In the last week of February, the Digital Hub YES!Delft The Hague staged a week-long hackathon in which 10 international teams competed for the best sustainable energy innovation. This grand start is defining for the vision and ambition of YES!Delft.

This is underlined by Evert Jaap Lugt, the managing director of YES!Delft:

“With the ambition of YES!Delft to become the best tech incubator in the world, it is necessary to have a strong regional basis. The talent, knowledge, experience and innovation drive are there. The opening of the Digital Hub in The Hague is an important step in building an extensive regional ecosystem in which we facilitate the connection between the right parties with the right circumstances, experience, and expertise.”

YES!Delft

YES! Delft has grown since 2005 into one of the most successful startup incubators in the world. The tech incubator came second in the world ranking of UBI Global, a European body that annually publishes incubator rankings. The more than 200 startups in the portfolio have access to the unique YES! Delft ecosystem of mentors, experts, investors, and corporate partners, which can be regarded as one of the most extensive ecosystems in Europe. In close cooperation with TU Delft, young talent is guided towards successful entrepreneurship. YES! Delft offers eight focus areas, each with its own specialized network, varying from Aviation, Cleantech, Robotics to MedTech. The emphasis in The Hague will be on software-related startups.

Tech Startup Case: Adeezy

Startup life is unpredictable. In the YES!Delft startup incubator we believe in sharing successes as well as failures. We want fellow entrepreneurs to inspire each other and learn from each other. By telling their stories on a case by case basis, you can learn about all the different (and sometimes wholly unexpected!) things you might encounter on your startup journey. 

 

Adeezy is a SaaS-startup from the YES!Delft AI/Blockchain Validation Lab. They are focused on building a platform where brands and agencies can plan and execute cost-effective social media campaigns. Adeezy uses the latest technological solutions such as Blockchain and Artificial intelligence to deal with problems in current online marketing, such as ad fraud, transparency and aversion to advertising.

 

The eleventh hour

After Adeezy’s initial investor ended up being unable to deliver right before the holidays, they had to re-start the arduous process of searching for new investors. Then, after the New Year, when Adeezy was in the process of finalizing a new investment, the deal fell through at the eleventh hour. This left the team without funding while developing their product – and the bills were due.

“It was a Thursday night, and things were looking pretty bleak for us. The next morning we were meeting with an investor, but we didn’t expect much of it – it felt like a last-ditch attempt. That Friday morning the rollercoaster began, and the one-minute pitch we perfected in the Validation Lab proved to be the key.”

Marco Berkheij, Adeezy co-founder

 

The Friday morning investor meeting proved to be successful, even though it didn’t provide all the funds Adeezy needed. However, because they were in the YES!Delft AI/Blockchain Validation Lab, Adeezy had access to all the YES!Delft services.

 

YES!Funded

One of those services is YES!Funded. On the advice of startup trainer Noor Figdor, Adeezy got in touch with Investment Director Jan Geert van Hall. They met on  Friday before noon, pitched their story, and Jan Geert immediately referred the team to an investor meetup in Amsterdam that same afternoon.

 

“While is it extremely unique to find funding so quickly- within the space of a day – it speaks volumes about the quality of the company, the team, and their pitching skills. At YES!Funded we have quick access to the right investor networks for our startups, a benefit of being with such a prestigious organization as Yes!Delft.”

Jan Geert van Hall, Investment Director

 

In the YES!Delft AI/Blockchain Validation Lab the Adeezy team had perfected their pitching skills with startup trainer Noor, and so was more than ready with a strong and relevant proposition for the investors. And it paid off – 12 out of 15 attending investors visited Adeezy’s breakout session and showed interest in potentially investing. The Adeezy team went home that evening, satisfied their startup journey would continue.

 

Apply to the AI/Blockchain Validation Lab

 

“During our training in the YES!Delft AI/Blockchain Validation Lab the Adeezy team did great with their pitch – they worked hard, and we challenged them to condense their story and highlight the strength and relevancy of their proposition. This success goes to show the importance of a fantastic pitch, and how much of a difference it can make.”

Noor Figdor, Startup Trainer

 

About YES!Funded

YES!Funded is a YES!Delft service launched in January 2019. The service is aimed to assist entrepreneurs in planning their financial strategy and seeking funds. Do you want to know what YES!Funded can do for you? Visit the website!

 

About AI/Blockchain Validation Lab

The AI/Blockchain Validation Lab is a unique YES!Delft program, based in the brand new Digital Hub YES!Delft The Hague. During this unique two-month ‘pressure cooker’, aspiring entrepreneurs discover the business potential of their ideas. The part-time program helps participants to explore and validate their ideas, product/market fit, and business model while enabling them to continue to work on their business. Participants also get access to the extensive YES!Delft ecosystem of experienced mentors, investors, corporate partners and launching customers.

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Top 10 startup success stories: March

It’s has been a busy month for the startup incubator YES!Delft – we officially opened our new location, YES!Delft The Hague. And our startups have been hustling too!  
Here we have selected the top 10 startup success stories for March:

 

1. Envision

Not only has AI startup Envision made the move to the brand new YES!Delft the Hague Digital Hub, at its grand opening they celebrated having successfully raised 250 000 EUR seed investment. Of course, they did so in traditional YES!Delft style; sabering champagne like pros!

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2. Warp Industries

At Get in the Ring 2019, EdTech/AI startup Warp Industries wowed the 16 judges and came out on top in their battle. Out of 87 participants, this startup pitched their way to the top! This means they will be attending Global Meetup 2019 in Berlin, a huge networking event with other startups, investors, and innovation professionals.

 

3. VIBES.technology

Since 2016 the team has been developing intuitive and user-friendly applications that make complex sound and vibration levels analysis accessible. Now VIBES.technology have launched DIRAC, the first software of its kind and a breakthrough application for test-based modeling. DIRAC ensures traceability of results and indicates the quality of the measurement.

 

4. Smart-Ship

Currently in our Accelerator Program, Smart-Ship continues to make waves! Their ambitious goal of autonomous shipping has landed the team a feature in Maritime Delta. Their innovative technology aims for a harmonious collaboration between man and machine to minimize human error in the shipping industry.

 

5. NOWI

The Dutch Semiconductor innovator won first place at the 2019 IoT World Cup for its work on energy harvesting technology. NOWI technology enables companies to use the energy that is already readily available around the device. This can be light, heat, movement or even radio waves. There is energy all around us that can now be converted and used to power IoT devices.

Apply for the Complex Tech Validation Lab

 

6. STIL

This MedTech startup, developing a brace to help stabilize the hands of Parkinson’s patients, has received funding from the Rabobank Innovation Fund. Moreover, Rabobank and STIL have joined forces so that the anti-tremor brace can be tested in a Clinical Study.

 

7. Somnox

This robotics tech startup dream team has landed (another!) feature by the BBC. Moreover, the first sleeping robots are on their way to the earliest backers of the startup! The first sleep robots started to reach their Kickstarter backers this week! A dream come true!

 

8. BI/OND

Big round of applause: BI/OND, one of our MedTech startups, has made it to the final of the Philips Innovation Award! On May 6, BI/OND are pitching against 4 other startups in the Innovator Award category grand final. And they’re not the only YES!Delft startup! DeNoize, part of the Accelerator Program, is in the final as well. The main prize is 50 000 EUR cash. Fingers crossed for both of these amazing startups!

Yesterday, the Semi-Final & Innovation Market took place in het Drijvend Paviljoen in Rotterdam. It was a day full of…

Geplaatst door Philips Innovation Award op Donderdag 21 maart 2019

 

9. Solar Monkey

The startup, whose innovative software maps the yield of solar panels, has raised 1M in funding. The money will be used to speed up the rollout, and breaking through in the international market!

 

10. Hello Tomorrow

We visited the Hello Tomorrow Summit in Paris, where we met many familiar faces! Rob Bedeuker, DSM Investment Director and one of the mentors from our upcoming BioTech Validation Lab, was a speaker in the summit. He talked during an investment panel focused on BioTech. Moreover, we were delighted to see some of our startups in attendance!

DeNoize, part of our Accelerator Program, ran a busy booth showcasing their noise-reducing glass solution.  

Nowi, incubated at YES!Delft, pitched in the Industry 4.0 track.

Munevo, EITHealth Validation Lab 2018 alumni, pitched in the Healthcare track. They also ran a booth where visitors could try out moving a scooter with smart glasses!   

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The Biotech Mentors from DSM for the Biotech Validation Lab

In February 2019, Biotech Campus Delft, its main stakeholder Royal DSM, and YES!Delft started a partnership culminating in a dedicated Biotech Validation Lab starting in May. As all the startup programs from YES!Delft, this one attracted many exceptional mentors that will guide the entrepreneurs in the program.

Specifically for the Biotech Validation Lab, the biotech mentors from DSM went down memory lane and looked back at their own early career experiences. Moreover, they took a moment to reflect on the impact of meeting the person whose mentoring influenced the trajectory of their careers.

Biotech and entrepreneurial mentors

Starting a biotech startup is exciting! You get to shape your idea into a business that solves a real problem in the industry and market. However, operating a startup in this field can represent a challenge due to the capital investments, scale-up hurdles and long development times related to it.

In the Biotech Validation Lab, the mentors have many years of experience in the biotech industry. Some of them have over 20 years of experience at DSM – the largest Dutch multinational in the fields of health, nutrition and materials –  such as Herman Wories, Will van den Tweel or Henk Noorman. Some others have started their own biotech companies, such as Arthur Oudshoorn, Christian Koolloos or Theo Verleun.

A good mentor can impact your whole career: “I started my career as a chemist in the R&D labs of DSM,” Gerard Hardeman (BU Director at DSM) remembers. “And as a student from the “roaring ’70s” anarchy and total freedom were very important to me. With this attitude, I entered in the corporate environment. One of my first bosses was a former refugee who fled with his family from the Balkans because of the war. He showed me how to deal with a different culture and requirements that go against various beliefs. The most important thing he taught me was how to see the other side of the truth. I still value this highly.”

Apply to the Biotech Validation Lab

 

Career mentoring

The mentors in the Biotech Validation Lab are all people who experienced the power of having a mentor early in their careers themselves, “each of them valuable in their own way,” acknowledges Ruth Donners (Venture Development Manager at DSM Innovation Center).

“I started my career as a patent attorney, which is a rather specialized job. My mentor helped me understand that I am a generalist and I can use my skills in a multitude of different jobs. This experience has been an inspiration not only to start innovating products but also to keep innovating myself. Possibilities are endless; just put your mind to it,” says Ruth Donners, looking over 18 years of career in DSM.

Henk Noorman (Corporate Science Fellow Engineering Sciences at DSM): “Early in my career at DSM I had a mentor who played a crucial role in advancing my career. For several years, I doubted whether I should pursue my work in science or try to become an artist instead, as I have several skills and interests. One day we discussed this, and he stated: you will have to investigate these alternatives thoroughly. This simple remark gave me the feeling that my doubts were taken seriously, and I made some explorative steps. However, it became quickly evident that a career in science would be best, and I could still very well perform on stage outside my work. A simple question from a good and respectful mentor can help to make key decisions in life.”

Check all the mentors in the Biotech Validation Lab

 

Mentors are timeless

The role of a mentor in someone’s career has grown in popularity over the last few years. But the term is deeply anchored in its purpose, recalls Herman Wories (VP Global Business Incubator at DSM).  “When I was younger, we didn’t have coaches or mentors like they are called nowadays, but I did have support from senior managers. Those managers with more seniority, with more experience, enable you to look at things from a broader perspective. When you are early in your career, you tend to look at things from your perspective only. Having this kind of support helps you to not miss out on opportunities.”

No matter how to call a mentor, the role and impact that a person can have on your career is crucial. Biotech Campus Delft, together with its main stakeholder Royal DSM, and YES!Delft, one of the leading tech incubators in the world, have joined forces to create the first Biotech Validation Lab.

Theo Verleun, Jan Hunik, Frans Koster, Henk Noorman, Theo Stikkers, Pim van Hee, Ruth Donners, Rob Beudeker, Christian Koolloos, Oscar Goddijn, Gerard Hardeman, Marianne Kentie, Herman Wories, Will van den Tweel, and Arthur Oudshoorn are all mentors in the Biotech Validation Lab. The ten biotech startups that are going to be selected in the validation program will benefit not only from the commercial validation expertise from the leading tech incubator in Europe but also from the professional guidance of the DSM mentors.

Share this article with people involved in promising biotech startups, tell them to apply to the program by the 5th of April!

Apply to the Biotech Validation Lab

Keeping birds away from commercial exploitations

Birds flying high, it can be a real danger – and costly hassle – around airports or on oil platforms, for example. Well, it’s a new dawn in bird control. An animal and ‘hertz’ friendly solution, that makes birds and humans feel good. Bird Control Group has developed a laser that keeps birds away from commercial exploitations, saving major companies millions in damage each year.

FROM ONE SIMPLE IDEA

Founder Steinar Henskes is more entrepreneur than an academic. In 2010, after dropping out of university, he started selling ready-made laser technology. With an interest in lasers and technology, this smart golden boy started developing his own products. He experimented with one of his lasers in a field and noticed that birds flew away. After that, Steinar perfected the technology and took it to market: each year there is over 25 million euro worth of damage done by geese in the agricultural field.

Bird Control Group started selling handheld lasers to farmers.

Yet, Steinar has always had a wish for developing a technology that could serve the aviation industry. So he just wrote an e-mail to someone he thought was important at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, got himself a deal with one of the biggest airports in Europe, and perfected his technology once again.

THROUGH YES!DELFT

Steinar is not a bird watcher, nor is he an environmental activist. He wants to do something good for the world with his technology. So he applied to YES!Delft in 2013, because he wanted his company and small team of engineers to grow and serve more industries. The tech incubator was, according to Steinar, an obvious choice being a high-tech company serving the B2B market.

Without YES!Delft’s network, partners and reputation, Bird Control Group would not have the authority they do now within their market. But, “you are responsible for your own success”, Steinar underlines. At YES!Delft he felt challenged by the other startups – his peers – to just get his company to a higher altitude.

TO A GROWING COMPANY

Bird Control Group is now the market leader in developing and manufacturing automated laser bird repellents. There are conventional methods, but these are noisy, unfriendly to birds and only ‘treat the symptoms’. The challenge for Bird Control Group is to make companies aware of their alternatives. Their ambition is to solve more issues in bird control that could not be solved before.

And that’s also Steinar’s personal ambition as an entrepreneur.

Bird Control Group still resides happily in the YES!Delft building. Steinar describes their workplace as “somewhere where you can actually get some work done”; he likes the functionality of the YES! offices and space. It’s a melting pot of (cultural) backgrounds with English as a common language.

What’s more, Bird Control Group opened their North American office a few years ago. The company solves bird issues all over the world at farms, industrial warehouses, refineries, feedlots, airports, and many more applications.

 

Apply to the Complex Tech Validation Lab

 

Milestones

  • July 2013 – laser installation at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport
  • September 2014 – contract with Total E&P Nederland
  • November 2014 – the launch of Agrilaser Autonomic
  • December 2015 – adaption of a resolution by the Dutch Parliament to stimulate the use of Bird Control Group lasers
  • March 2016 – take-over of U.S. based distributor
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