Diploma Supplement on Innovation Demo Day & Alumni Meet-up 2017
The semester’s end is near and on June 7th is was time for the Diploma Supplement on Innovation class 2016 to present their final innovative projects in front of a jury and an invited audience. The students developed their projects during the past summer term (the third and final semester of the curriculum) in the lecture “Innovation Project”, a practical course guiding them from idea to prototype. The Diploma Demo Day was also an opportunity for the alumni of previous classes and the lecturers, mentors and the potential new students of the curriculum to meet up, network and enjoy the location’s unique view over the rooftops of Vienna.
Birgit Hofreiter, director of the Innovation Incubation Center, opened the event with a welcome note. She presented the different i²c programs and services, news and some facts about the Diploma Supplement on Innovation. She also announced that in winter semester 2017/18 we are starting a pilot: The curriculum will be shortened from three to two semesters without reducing the content; a decision resulting from the evaluated feedback collected in previous years. The aim is to increase the effectiveness of the learned theory by applying it in parallel to individual projects, instead of doing so in the third semester. Now they will start developing them already right from the beginning on.
Second on the agenda was an impulse talk by one of our i²c alumni. Markus Holzer, co-founder and CEO of contextflow, is an alumnus of the Diploma Supplement on Innovation class 2015 and of the StartAcademy 2015 (a three-day bootcamp for TUW-scientists to evaluate the commercialisation potential of their research results). Contextflow is now one of the start-ups in our TUWi²ncubator, with the team working in the i²c FounderSpace. Markus told the audience what happened since he finished the Diploma last year, why everyone should get out of his/her comfort zone and gave advice to everybody willing to found a company.
After his impulse talk, it was time for the highlight of this event – the student’s pitch challenge, moderated by Georg Kuttner, Managing Partner at Startup Live GmbH. The presentations were judged by a jury consisting of start-up ecosystem players named:
– Thomas Ecker, Senior Investment Manager at tecnet equit
– Matthias Grabner, Sector Manager Technology & Health at AUSSENWIRTSCHAFT AUSTRIA
– Daniel Horak, Co-Founder and Managing Partner Marketing & Sales at CONDA A
– Gregor Posch, Start-up Services Representative at Wirtschaftsagentur Wien
– Tanja Sternbauer, Managing Partner at Startup Live and
– Bernhard Ungerböck, Associate (Venture Capital) at aws Gründerfonds.
The projects of class 2017 presented were:
1. BookitGreen: The booking platform for sustainable and eco-vacation.
2. Coinnecting: An automated Person-to- Person exchange platform that makes buying and selling Bitcoin more secure.
3. Gift Perfect: We know your wishes, even though you may not.
4. Goodbag: The bag that counts.
5. Michelangelo: Generates Virtual Worlds.
6. Moodship: Find suitable friends for your activity by matching your moods.
7. MyGrams: A pocket size kitchen scale that connects with smartphones and helps diabetics to count carbs more easily.
8. PieDrive: Your explorer for cloud storages
9. SamurAI: A cryptocurrency investment fund, which trades only based on machine learning decisions.
10. Somnu: Helping people to gain healthy sleep, starting with an efficient service to detect sleep apnes in children.
While the jury decided on the winners in different categories, the audience voted for their favorite team in a community voting. We had four winners: BookitGreen won the community voting and received a “Ticket for the Startup Live Linz #1”. Since the jury favored two teams for this prize, the sponsors decided to hand out two tickets and took another team – PieDrive – to the event. SamurAI received a surprise award, which was not announced before: “Participation in the Alpbach Summer School on Entrepreneurship”. Michelangelo was the big winner, who was awarded with four prizes: “Office space at the i²c FounderSpace” and “Acceptance in the TUWi²ncubator” by i²c, “500€ in Cash & Individual IP & Financing Consulting” by tecnet equity and an “Artificial Intelligence Workshop with Dr. Hermann Hauser” by WKO.
It is always a pleasure to see the students taking advantage of and appreciating the offered support by the Innovation Incubation Center. This year, one of the students even sung us a serenade to say thank you. After this surprise, we celebrated the awards and the successful completion of the Diploma Supplement on Innovation of class 2016 with drinks, food, music and a unique view over Vienna.
Congratulations to all the students for their achievements! During the last months, they worked hard on their projects and pitches and they can be proud of their performance at the Demo Day. For the further development of their projects and their entrepreneurial future, we wish them all the best.