Besides the innovativeness, value for society, technical aspects and financial viability of the solutions, the selection committee of the W. A de Vigier Award seeks entrepreneurs that have an strong personality. This year, 192 startups submitted their projects from which the top 16 were shortlisted to present their ideas to the Foundation Board. The committee has now selected the Top 10 startups that will further compete in the finale. Six of the nominees are from the cleantech sector. According to Regula Buob, Managing Director of the W.A. de Vigier Foundation, "It is evident that our generation has urgent environmental problems to solve."
The top 10 finalists are:
Annaida Technologies AG, Medtech (Lausanne) - Annaida is developing a device that supports doctors in choosing the most viable embryo non-invasively. The clinics they work with will be proud to serve their patients with the most advanced technology, resulting in happy families and heartfelt referrals.
Bloom Biorenewables AG, Cleantech (Marly, Fribourg) - Transforms wood and agricultural waste into renewable materials that fully replace petroleum. The solutions enables companies to have a green and locally available alternative, reach eco-conscious customers, meet government guidelines, save on C02 taxes and help tackle climate change.
DePoly AG, Cleantech (Sion) - Turns low valued post-consumer PET waste into highly valued original chemical components that can be remade into virgin plastic. This solution turns waste into revenue while contributing to a cleaner environment.
EH Group Engineering AG, Cleantech (Prangins, VD) - developed a technology that harnesses the power of hydrogen in a compact, reliable way at low cost and minimal initial investment. The solution enables major manufacturers in the automotive, aviation and maritime industries to get ahead of their competitors in innovating towards a greener future.
FenX AG, Cleantech ( Zurich) - turns industrial waste into handy and high-performance insulation panels that are safe, non-flammable and have a minimal carbon footprint. With their solution, the startup provides excellent insulation that fulfils all the market requirements in terms of safety and green labels, at a low cost.
MEMBRASENZ Ltd., cleantech (Ecublens) - developed membranes for producing environmentally friendly methods of hydrogen. The solution not only enables the clients to reduce electricity costs, but it also enables their electrolysers to significantly outperform their competitors' devices.
Microcaps AG, Medtech ( Zurich) - developed a patented technology that enables companies producing fragrances, flavours and probiotics to control the size microcapsules with Swiss precision to ensure that all capsules behave exactly the same. The technology allows users to directly tailor and predict the release profile of a drug.
Oxara AG, Cleantech, construction ( Zurich) - developed a chemical mixture that turns excavation waste into eco-friendly building material. This saves the building industry millions in landfill costs and provides it with enough sustainable material for construction.
REA, Medtech (Lausanne) - is developing a smart panty liner that analyzes vaginal secretions and alerts the doctor via app if the mom-to-be has to go to the hospital. This solution allows pregnant women who are at risk of preterm birth to be monitored in the comfort of their own home, sparing them from potentially months of unnecessary hospital stays and overtreatment with medications.
Sevensense Robotics AG, Robotics (Zurich) - developed a ready to use solution that turns manual machines into self-driving robots. This catapults their customers to the forefront of the highly competitive robotics market at a fraction of the time and cost.
(Press release / RAN)