CTI startup Label for IOT and Agro-tech startups

Ritah Ayebare Nyakato/Stefan Kyora

13.04.2017 15:40

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Two startups providing tech-based solutions have been bestowed with the CTI Startup Label: Nexiot, providing smart solutions for the logistics industry and CombaGroup, providing cost-effective and eco-friendly solution for growing leaf vegetables.

The Swiss Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) enables creative entrepreneurs to realize their innovative business ideas quickly and professionally. Through a three-phase, firmly guided process lasting 8 to 26 months, a dedicated coach plus other experts will help the venture’s project evolve sufficiently to apply for the CTI Start-up Label. The Start-up Label is a seal of quality, a certificate of achievement, and a sign of credibility and readiness for sustainable growth. It is awarded by the CTI Certification Board that is composed of seasoned entrepreneurs and experts.

The current holders of the CTI Startup Label are;

Nexiot AG, Zürich
Nexiot is an Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) company. Established as a spinoff from the ETH Zurich, Nexiot specialises in power independent communication solutions using big data algorithms and ultra-low-power embedded technology to help logistics companies increase shipment visibility.

Following their ten years of research at the ETH University in Zurich, the startup built smart sensors which provide data on the location and behaviour of non-powered mobile assets world-wide. Integrated energy harvesting and an ultra-low energy approach means long-term, hassle free, global connectivity for the lifetime of the asset. Thanks to their powerful ‘event language’ which informs customers of a range of business critical events, stakeholders can know the status of their asset for automated response or human intervention.

Nexiot solutions are most suitable for rail freight, to improve efficiency and extract more value from the fleet; container shipping to optimise fleet usage and route design; and for security purposes.

In February, VTG, the largest private wagon hire company in Europe and one of the leading providers of rail and tank container logistics services, announced that it would to equip its entire 80,000 European wagon fleet with Nexiot’s telematics system. Also Faroe Islands’ Smyril Line Cargo reported that it was going to install Globe Tracker’s two-way sensor system to its reefer fleet.

CombaGroup SA, Molondin (VD)
CombaGroup is an agro-tech company that developed a cost effective and environmentally technology for growing lettuce. The combination of technological advancements in logistics, agronomy, climate control and automation yield up to 15x productivity gains.

CombaGroup’s technology is based on a so-called “aeroponic system”, a method for growing the plants in an air or moist environment instead of using soil. The lettuce is not exposed to climate risks and insects. Combined with much reduced use of pesticides, aeroponics leads to simpler and faster processing including washing and reduces wastage, which gives the salad a longer shelf-life. In addition, CombaGroup technology allows bagged leaf vegetable producers to integrate all steps of the production value chain, which enables them to deliver healthier products and allows them to produce leaf vegetables right next to the consumption centres.

Combagroup has secured financing with a Serie A round and is now in the process of developing its first commercial project in Switzerland, France and Northern Europe.

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