The Talent Pitch Award 2023 went to qCella, an ETH Spin-off reshaping the heating system. The company develops natural cellulose fibres filled with copper to create a unique hybrid material to easily shape-customizable, paper-thin and fully homogeneous heating mats. In comparison to conventional heating wire technology, qCella mats present a proper electrical resistance across the entire structure so that the mats heat homogeneously when connected to a power source. The jury and the audience in the Talent Pitch competition, designed for student entrepreneurs at Swiss Universities, were impressed with the idea, which bestows up to CHF 12’500 to the best startups, with CHF 6000 going to qCella.
The Toggenburg-based start-up Hacky, founded by Manuel Lusti and Philipp Brügger, has won the Best Newcomer Idea Award as part of the Launch Control - Swiss Startup Incubator & Accelerator. Hacky is building a bug bounty platform for Small and medium-sized companies to build a bridge between companies and hackers by managing the funding and payout of rewards. The hackers commissioned by Hacky continuously check the IT infrastructure of their customers. If the hackers find what they are looking for, they will receive a reward from Hacky. Hacky himself analyzes, classifies and evaluates the vulnerability and then issues an easy-to-understand report to the affected company. The founders are currently working hard on their prototype to get it ready for testing with companies at the beginning of 2024. The award prize is a spot in the Startup Nights competition in Winterthur and a ticket to the Web Summit in Lisbon, the world’s largest tech conference.
Nanoflex COO Grace Katzschmann received the Best MedTech Presenter award at the New England Venture Summit after presenting Nanoflex's vision to transform stroke care through remote robotics in order to improve a patient's quality of life. The Zurich-based startup is developing a proprietary robotic platform to navigate magnetic devices in complex vascular anatomy using precise electromagnetic fields. Its first product is a compact and mobile electromagnetic field generator that can easily be moved between hospital interventional suites, requiring no additional infrastructure beyond a high-voltage electrical point and access to a water-based cooling system. The system allows direct tip control of magnetically adapted interventional devices.
metaLead is one of the startups that were selected to join BioInnovation Institute's (BII’s) Venture Lab program, which is designed to support early-stage life science start-ups in developing innovations that benefit people and society. The current batch includes MetaLead, the startup developing new therapies to treat metal-related diseases - many of which cannot be currently treated. Its lead candidate MTL-01 is designed to be highly stable, therefore can be administered orally and intravenously. This will enable a compatible and patient-friendly administration route.