Editorials

The hunger to learn remains

22.06.2018 15:41

Despite success, it is clear that Switzerland must continue to accelerate in order to maintain and even improve its good international position. So the willingness to learn from the best is grounds for optimism.

Dear reader

For almost 20 years, the World Economic Forum has honoured early stage start-ups as Technology Pioneers. In the past, Swiss companies rarely made it on to this exclusive list, but that has changed this year. Three Swiss representatives are among the Technology Pioneers 2018 – BestMile, H55 and Melonport. Another highlight of the week: Sophia Genetics is now focusing on external growth and has taken over a French company. This has come after a financing round of CHF 30 million last year and the appointment of a new CFO – a development that is typical for start-up companies with stock market ambitions.

There was also good news in connection with general conditions in Switzerland: FINMA gave Crypto Fund AG the go-ahead for the distribution of collective investment schemes. The start-up is the first crypto fund company to receive a license from FINMA. In addition, the responsible government commission has approved an initiative by Ruedi Noser on the taxation of employee shares and options – which could make life easier for start-ups. More details in our article.

With such successes, it is not surprising that Switzerland has climbed three places in the Digital Competitiveness Index and is now ranked fifth. However, in addition to its strengths, the study also found numerous Swiss weaknesses in terms of digitalisation. At the Digital Competitiveness Summit, held by IMD and digitalswitzerland this week, it was not only pleasure over the achievements that was on offer. Marc Walder, CEO of Ringier and founder of the digitalswitzerland location initiative, said that although Switzerland offers good conditions for digitalisation, other countries will probably transform faster.

This belief is widespread at least in the start-up scene, and the fact that it leads to a willingness to learn from the best gives cause for optimism. Learning events will then become increasingly important. Just this week, Innosuisse and the Israel Innovation Authority signed a declaration of cooperation. Swiss start-up camps have been in San Francisco for quite a while now: our article describes the most important points to be gained from these camps.

Next week, the awards ceremony of >> venture >> competition will take place in Lausanne on Monday – the finalists have now been announced. More information in our article (German and French). In addition, we will be at the Female Innovation Forum next Thursday.

Have a good footballing evening – Hopp Schwiiz!
Stefan Kyora

Editor in Chief Startupticker.ch

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