Review: The first WSC Demo Day 2023
At WORLDFACTORY, we accompany around 100 start-ups every year on the path to their foundation and thus actively support the transfer of knowledge from science to business. The fact that Bochum is successfully transforming the old industrial city into a modern start-up and knowledge location is demonstrated by the high number of innovative start-ups founded in Bochum and the region.
On March 7, the WSC Demo Day took place at Bochum's O-Werk. The 10 best WSC start-ups of the last years pitched their solutions, successes and visions for the future and then had to face the questions of the five-member jury that was headed by the Prorector for Research and Transfer Prof. Dr. Meschke. At the end of the evening, the 5 most convincing ideas were awarded as "WSC Stars 2023". Besides the jury, about 130 guests had made their way to the O-Werk, where the RUB Makerspace is located. Here founders can find space and infrastructure for developing and testing prototypes or models. A symbolic place. The center of attention of the evening were the founding teams with their pitches. In addition, Prof. Dr. Meschke, Prof. Dr. Stefanie Bröring (Chair of Innovative Business Models) and CEIT Managing Director Dr. Fabian Schmitz provided further insights with their own presentations.
These 10 start-ups were nominated for the WSC Demo Day: deeplify, GEMESYS, Glim Skin, Hai-End Streaming, HoLa, OsteoMimic, Pavoa, SLVISIONS, Vintus and xemX.
These werde the criteria the jury used to award points: Business Model, Innovation, Team, Commitment, Development and Pitch. For this purpose, the jury not only evaluated the 3-minute pitches, but also included the complete pitch decks in advance. In the end, these 5 founding teams were able to convince the jury:
1st place: HoLa - It is hard to imagine science and industry without lasers. They read or cut surfaces in diverse areas of modern technology. The HoLa team has revolutionized ultrashort pulse laser technology. They successfully developed a new type of laser that can be used to work precisely even in deeper layers of material. In this way, HoLa is revolutionizing scientific applications and materials processing. The international team is very proud of its achievement, as the WSC Demo Day was the first pitch competition in which HoLa participated.
2nd place: xemX - The industrial production of hydrogen requires the use of catalysts. These typically contain rare earths. To avoid this valuable raw material, xemX develops catalysts free of precious metals. In this way, the start-up contributes to the field of green technologies. After all, the mining of precious metals is in many cases associated with adverse effects on the environment.
3rd place: GEMESYS - Information processing as efficient as in the human brain. That is the vision of GEMESYS. The founding team has developed a computer chip that is based on the brain in its design. With this paradigm shift, it is possible to process data volumes to an extent previously unattainable in a more efficient and energy-saving manner. This is an immense advantage in the field of cryptography, but also artificial intelligence or production planning.
4th place: SLVISIONS - SLVISIONS' technology can precisely predict the service life of wind turbines. For this purpose, the founders use a special software for data management. This possibility holds an enormous potential for the progress and expansion of green energy production. By precisely determining the service life of a turbine, it is possible to replace it only when it is really necessary. This means that costs in the wind power sector can be significantly reduced.
5th place: Vintus – A significant part of modern work is performed while sitting - and this usually takes up a large part of the day. There is rarely time for beneficial exercise. The indirect consequences are physical and mental suffering. To prevent this, the founding team of Vintus has developed smart seating systems that allow movement to be integrated into everyday work life. The aim is to improve health, well-being and the ability to focus. The result is healthier and happier people.
These are the TOP 5 start-ups of the RUB 2023! Congratulations on this success! The winning teams will be awarded with an extensive support package. These include trips to exhibitions and congresses in Germany & abroad, such as tickets to SLUSH, booths at Digital DemoDay 2023 and pitches at ruhrSUMMIT, as well as nominations for grants and competitions.
Not only for the five winning teams, but also for the entire WORLDFACTORY, the first WSC Demo Day was a great success! We are happy about all the visitors, the opportunity to present the start-up ecosystem of the RUB and to further connect it. And one thing is for sure: This will not be the last WSC Demo Day! We are happy to announce that we will continue with the 2nd round of the Demo Day in spring 2024 where we will be able to experience innovative start-up ideas again!