Editorials

Pulling together

13.07.2018 13:50

More and more outstanding companies and institutions are becoming part of the Swiss start-up ecosystem.

Dear reader

According to the Global Innovation Index published this week, Switzerland is still the most innovative country in the world. This underscores how well the conditions for the success of start-ups are in this country. But in order for really fast-growing companies to emerge, the stronger players have to pull together. Fortunately, this happens more and more often. The most spectacular evidence this week came from Swisscom, which has created a fund for third-party investors. Together with Swisscom’s own funds, CHF 200 million will be available for early stage start-ups, half of which will go to Swiss companies. Find out more in our article on the new fund (in German and French).

Other noteworthy initiatives were launched this week. For example, Park Innovaare brought together CERN, one of the largest and most renowned scientific research institutes in the world, the Paul Scherrer Institute, the largest research institute for natural and engineering sciences in Switzerland, and the University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland. Together, they are launching a competition for high-tech start-ups that would benefit from use of the facilities or the technology for research.

Also among the top addresses worldwide is the talent incubator IMD. For years, the high calibre students have worked together with the winners of the IMD Startup Competition. This week six additional start-ups were selected as part of a special edition of the competition.

Another new initiative concerns the universities of applied sciences. The First Ventures programme from the Gebert Rüf Foundation supports members of universities with a grant to enable them to exploit research results in a start-up. This week, the first four grant recipients were announced and they show impressively what promising technologies and business ideas are being developed at these universities.

It is also good news when Swiss authorities select start-ups in order to implement innovations; for example, the St. Gallen educational department for secondary schools is using the ETH Zurich spin-off Taskbase to develop an online learning platform. The contract is worth about CHF 1 million.

Two more IT start-ups caused a sensation this week with major rounds of financing. Goodwall, the LinkedIn for students, completed a financing round of more than USD 10 million. And proptech company Allthings received about CHF 13 million from several well-known European venture capitalists.

Finally, two deadlines are looming: the application deadline for the Climate-KIC Accelerator programme ends on 29 July. And start-ups, investors and supporters have until 27 July to apply for the Venture Capital Academy from Switzerland Global Enterprise and the University of California, Berkeley.

Have a good weekend
Stefan Kyora

Editor in Chief, Startupticker.ch

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