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A new chapter for the probably best ice cream in the world

2017-12-07

Kastbergs Gourmet-Is, a former participant in our acceleration program, is taking the next step in scaling their business and has just sold company shares to Mammen Mejerierne. Founder Joachim Kastberg is incredibly happy about this milestone as they can now simplify the production and boost the growth at the same time.

If you ask young Joachim about his dream job, he probably would have replied becoming a pilot. Later, he discovered his passion for ice cream and took over the home kitchen trying out new variations. What started as a hobby soon became his dream job and he launched his startup in 2012.

Kastbergs differs from other ice cream providers as the company is only using ingredients from suppliers who can assure premium quality. The team regularly visits those partners in order to control the quality and develop new products together. For instance, they recently teamed up with a chocolate company in France to produce a new sort of chocolate which they will process in their ice cream selections. Since starting in 2012, the creative mind came up with manifold ice cream sorts and hit the taste buds of his customers: Kastbergs was selling all across Denmark within two years.

Leaving the home kitchen behind

Kastbergs successfully applied for getting a spot within Accelerace’s food accelerator and received one-on-one business training from FoodTech experts. “The eight months spent with Accelerace have been a really insightful time with a steep learning curve. I could fundamentally profit from their widespread network and they opened a lot of opportunity doors for me.” Besides that, Joachim’s industry coach also helped him in shortlisting his growth strategies and pursuing the most realistic ones. “An entrepreneur has thousands of ideas running through his mind at the same time. Accelerace’s external and unbiased expertise allowed me to strategically think about the feasibility and challenges of my ideas. And even months after having graduated from the program, I’m still in close contact with Accelerace.”

Big plans for the future
After years of continuous growth, the current production plant has reached its maximum capacity and Joachim was looking for satisfying alternatives. During his whole venture, he was in contact with employees from the dairy company Mammen Mejerierne. Both sides realized the potential of a future collaboration and decided that Kastbergs sells shares of the company to Mammen Mejerierne. “This allows us to expand our current production while guaranteeing the same or even higher quality of the ice cream” says Joachim Kastberg. They will start teaming up in January 2018 building the fundament for future growth including the long-term goals of exporting to other countries. “But first, we need to serve all our Danish customers to their fullest satisfaction.”

Read more about Accelerace’s FoodTech program: www.accelerace.io/food

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Our founders’ pack just got leveled up

2017-12-01

At Accelerace, we don’t just consult startups in scaling but want also to provide them the ideal fundament for boosting their businesses from the moment they join our program. Our so-called founders’ pack allows all participating startups to profit from unique deals and partnerships with high-quality external service providers. This ensures that startups joining the acceleration program have access to the most relevant and beneficial platforms covering cloud, IoT, consulting, legal or office space services leaving nothing to be desired.

 

But we are not resting on our laurels and continue extending the founders’ pack. We are happy to announce that we have just teamed up with the two providers HotSpot and Tele2 developing new tailor-made service packages.

Your startup – connected everywhere
The world is turning faster every day and the digitalization is bringing unprecedented changes.  Therefore, business becomes more and more globalized and cloud-based. To keep your startup online all over the world, we banded together with the telecommunications provider TELE2. Their service Tele2 Internet of Things supports businesses from the development to the deployment to the optimization of IoT-based solutions. The Accelerace founders’ pack includes 10 SIM cards for 6-month free testing, access to technical consulting and the chance of product promotion with Tele2 IoT topped with an attractive introductory pricing.

Fueling your growth and customer relationship
Our second partner HubSpot is an MIT spin-off and providing inbound marketing software solutions. The service offers tools for content marketing, search engine optimization, website analytics or social media marketing and can be integrated into various platforms. Their hubs focus on CRM, marketing, sales, and customers. The Accelerace founders’ pack includes a 90% discount on the platform, access to free webinars and the opportunity to interact with the HubSpot support team.

 

Founders’ pack partners: Google Cloud Platform, Amazon Web Sevices, Microsoft BizSpark, Deloitte, Kromann Reumert, Frontpage, Symbion, Tele2, HubSpot

Detailed overview of the founders’ pack services: www.accelerace.io/accelerator

 

 

 

 

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Meet the newest members of the Accelerace family

2017-11-17

The deadline to join Accelerace’s first batch in 2018 has just closed. If you haven’t met the start-ups from our current batch, there is no more time to waste as they are highly promising in changing their ecosystems and enhancing the life of their customers.

After having screened countless start-ups in the sectors of CleanTech, FoodTech, Life Science, Health Care and General Tech, we chose nine promising startups which we support on their endeavors. On 16th October, the newcomers joined Accelerace in kicking off the latest round of its six to eight months and equity-free program. Accelerace is hosting 2 to 3 times per year such a batch allowing start-ups to grow together with tailored support from their consultants and in close collaboration with Accelerace’s corporate partner network.

Spotlight on VRinspired, SBTinstruments and Octlight
The current start-ups are not lacking diversity as their core focuses ranges from virtual reality over smart city to ophthalmology. The tech start-up VRinspired brings VR experiences to the masses by delivering solutions for location-based VR centers and their team has an impressive track record in the film and gaming industry.
The FoodTech start-up SBTinstruments is tackling safety issues in the food industry: Conventional hygiene tests in production sites take three days to be evaluated. Three days in which contamination can find its way into the retailers’ or worse, consumers’ hands. SBTinstruments found a way to test bacteria count within five minutes, avoiding costly and potentially dangerous food recalls.
The Danish start-up Octlight is revolutionizing diagnostics in ophthalmology. They are reducing the large number of preventable outcomes of eye disease like visual impairment or even blindness by making 3D images.

Below, you can find all Accelerace newcomers listed by their respective industry.

Tech Accelerator
VRinspired: Develops and distributes exciting VR experiences for location-based VR centers and businesses.
WARM: Helps artists, managers, producers and labels discover when and where their music is played by screening 23.000+ radio stations worldwide.
MeetinVR: Brings remote collaborations to a new level by allowing creative professionals to meet and review their work in VR.

CleanTech Accelerator
Bosolog: Enables extensive supply chain tracking. Their multisensory systems measures a variety of parameters and notifies users immediately in order to avoid damage to their goods.
VisBlue: Developed a groundbreaking battery technology that allows users to store more of their energy in a safe and environmentally friendly way.
Enfor: Brings the energy sector up to speed with their forecasting and optimization tools.

FoodTech Accelerator
SBTinstruments: Specialized in food safety by offering the industry a rapid measurement tool for bacteria count in aqueous solutions, reducing time for analysis from 3 days to 5 minutes.

Life Science and MedTech Accelerator
Precure: Working on wearable technology to prevent injury and improve rehabilitation.
Octlight: Setting new standards in eye diagnostics. Their swept light source technology is enabling 3D OCT images of the eye.

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Accelerace wins the best Nordic accelerator category at Nordic Startup Awards

2017-11-02

The Nordic Startup Awards provides an annual spotlight to those who dare to dream big and shape the way the future look.

The Nordic finale of the Nordic Startup Awards was held the 18th of October in Stockholm, Sweden, where more than 800 participants celebrated the thriving Nordic startup ecosystem. Accelerace won the category as best Accelerator program in the Nordics after an eventful year.

Accelerace founder & CEO Peter Torstensen says: “Since 2008 where Accelerace was founded we have been working hard to develop strong ecosystems for startups. We believe that in the long run the success of startups is a function of the quality of the ecosystem. We also believe that strong ecosystems are build by one successful startup at the time and therefore we focus on the start-ups with the potential to scale their business fast. As an accelerator, we are developing at a fast pace just like the start-ups and we work hard to stay on top of our game. Winning the award as best Nordic accelerator is a great honor and a recognition of the work we constantly try to do to build startups and ecosystems.”

5 new accelerators backed by corporate partners
The last year has been an eventful year for Accelerace. Accelerace started five new accelerators focused on Technology, Foodtech, Cleantech, Biotech & Life sciences and Medtech & Healh Care as part of the Scale-up Denmark initiative. The accelerators are currently taking in the fifth batch of start-ups. In this process, Accelerace seeks to bridge the corporate/startup gap and has initiated innovation partnerships with Arla Foods, Foss, NRGi, Business Lolland-Falster, and Mærsk.

Accelerace also started the Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship (NOME) which is based on a Novo Nordisk Foundation initiative. The program is today the first life science mentor network covering the Nordics with 10 fast-growing start-ups, 7 strategic country-based partners with expertise in start-up business development, and +30 world-class mentors who are some of the most experienced biotech entrepreneurs and life science executives in the Nordic countries and the USA.

According to the official jury of the Nordic Startup Awards, Accelerace won the category for several factors: “Especially Accelerace’s high success rate and that 88% of the startups are still on the market shows just how great their service is. The founders package, team, funding support and mentor work were further elements which made the NSAwards jury chose Accelerace as this year’s winner of the Best Accelerator category.”

Connecting the Nordic start-up ecosystem
The Nordic Startup Awards is a unique series of events in the Nordic countries – Denmark, Sweden, Iceland, Norway, and Finland – to recognize, celebrate and connect the Nordic startup ecosystem. In addition to being regional, it is also cross-sectorial, bringing together all the actors within the startup ecosystem from startups and investors and much more.

Five of the 15 awards were won by Danish start-ups and organizations: Founder’s House won for best Co-working Space, KUBO Robotics won the best Newcomer category, MentorDenmark won the People’s Choice awards and Too Good To Go as recognized as the best foodtech startup in the Nordics.

The event is part of the Global Startup Awards that brings together amazing ideas and the best talents from 4 regions, 25 countries across the globe to celebrate entrepreneurial spirit and startups.

The global finale will be held in China where Accelerace will be up against accelerator programs from all around the globe.

Check out all the winners of the Nordic Startup Awards at their website here http://nordicstartupawards.com/season-2017-now

Read more in the following media: Business Insider Nordics, StartupBeat, TechSavvyMedia, Digital247, ITWatch, InnoMag.noShifter.noTheSociable, and on the Accelerace blog here: https://medium.com/accelerace-family


(Photo by Daniel Söderberg, Greenpix.se)


(Photo by Daniel Söderberg, Greenpix.se)


(Photo by Daniel Söderberg, Greenpix.se)

 

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MonTa Biosciences signs licensing agreement to develop cancer treatment

2017-11-01

The Danish biotech company MonTa Biosciences announces signing a licensing agreement with University of California San Diego to develop a new treatment that actively educates the body’s immune system to recognize and fight cancer.

MonTa Biosciences, a spin-out from DTU-Nanotech, is now taking their promising cancer treatment across the Atlantic with a new license agreement with University of California San Diego (UC San Diego). With this license agreement, MonTa Biosciences is a major step closer to the commercialization of their innovative immunotherapeutic treatment, which may be a game changer for the future cancer treatment. The immunotherapeutic treatment makes use of nanoparticles capable of delivering an immune-stimulating drug to the immune system, which enables the body’s immune system to recognize, attack and eliminate cancer cells.

Worldwide exclusive license
“The new license agreement gives us exclusive worldwide rights and represents a major step towards commercializing our cancer treatment” says CEO Simon Skjøde Jensen (Ph.D.). “UC San Diego is one of the world’s leading specialists in this type of immune activating therapy, which involves compounds that activates the so-called Toll Like Receptor 7 (TLR7). The research group at UC San Diego is led by Professor Dennis Carson, who has worked with this class of compounds for several years, and showed remarkable anti-tumor activities in mouse models of cancer.  The field of cancer immunotherapy and particularly the activation of the innate immune system is currently one of the most attractive and fastest developing therapeutic areas. The agreement is a very important milestone for our ability to treat patients effectively in the future, and to get the immune system to help the body fight cancer and especially metastases which are major problems for doctors and patients today.”

Mentoring providing access to US market
MonTa Biosciences is today part of NOME (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship) initiated by the Novo Nordisk Foundation and Accelerace.  Life science startups get there essential access to counseling from some of the most experienced biotech entrepreneurs and life science executives in the Nordic countries and the USA. The NOME responsible Accelerace Partner Peter Birk (Ph.D.) says: “MonTa Biosciences is a very promising life science startup and has reached many milestones in the development of their cancer treatment within a short period of time. The license agreement with UC San Diego accelerates the development of the startup company, and we have very high expectations for the talented team.”

The core technology of MonTa Biosciences was initiated as a research project at DTU and received a capital injection of €270,000 from Pre-seed Innovation in March 2017. MonTa Biosciences have previously raised an investment from the Danish Innovation Fund. The Biotech startup company is currently looking for additional investment and is attracting great interest from major pharmaceutical companies.

About MonTa Biosciences Aps
MonTa Biosciences is a Danish biotech company that has developed a new immunotherapeutic treatment of cancer. With MonTa Biosciences treatment, the body’s immune system can be trained to recognize and eliminate cancer cells so metastases in the patient are fought by the body’s immune system. Preliminary results show a very promising treatment, where the technology in models of cancer in mice can cure most of the mice. MonTa Biosciences is today part of the NOME accelerator program (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship), an international mentoring network for particularly promising life science companies.
Read more about MonTa Biosciences here: http://montabiosciences.com

About Accelerace and NOME
Accelerace is one of the world’s top 10 seed accelerators. Since 2008, they has spotted, trained and invested in more than 500 of the most promising Danish and international startups and growth companies. 88% of the companies are still on the market today. As part of the national Scale-up Denmark initiative Accelerace is scaling up startups within tech, foodtech, cleantech, life sciences and health care technologies through guidance and mentoring from skilled serial entrepreneurs, camps and network. Accelerace has invested in more than 69 promising startups, who have been through the Accelerace program and have started partnerships with Maersk, Novo Nordisk Foundation. Arla, Foss, NRGI, Business Lolland-Falster, Bang & Olufsen, SE, Endesa & Enel. Accelerace is also organizing the Nordic NOME  (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship) mentor network for life science startups. Read more on www.accelerace.io and www.nome.nu

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Accelerace shortlisted as best accelerator at Nordic Startup Awards 2017

2017-07-26

Each year the Nordic Startup Awards celebrates the startup ecosystems in a grand celebration and award ceremony. This year a total of 65 Danish startups, founders, ecosystems, accelerators, investors, and coworking spaces are nominated in 13 categories. Accelerace is nominated as best accelerator program and best investor in the 2017 edition.

The annual Nordic Startup Awards event recognizes, celebrate and connect the Nordic startup ecosystems. Accelerace is shortlisted as best Danish accelerator in close competition with Thinkubator, Danish Tech Challenge, Odense Robotics, and the corporate accelerator Next Step Challenge, that Accelerace ran for a three-year period. Accelerace is also shortlisted as the best investor 2017 in fierce competition with Jesper Buch Holding, Tommy Andersen, NorthCap, and Syddansk Innovation.

Public voting is open until the 22nd of August 2017. http://bit.ly/2uo0fct

An eventful year
A lot has happened in the last year where Accelerace has launched five new elite accelerators focusing on technology, foodtech, cleantech, life sciences & biotech and medtech & health care. The accelerators are launched as part of the Scale-up Denmark initiative. In the recent year, Accelerace also launched new corporate partnerships with Mærsk, ARLA foods, FOSS Analytics, and Business Lolland-Falster. Accelerace also partnered with ISDI, Danone, Mobile World Capital, FundingBox and more as part of the European Impact Growth startup accelerator.

The new development also meant a warm welcome to many new team members. Meet the team here: https://www.accelerace.io/team/

Accelerace also launched the elite NOME (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship) based on a Novo Nordisk Foundation initiative to propel promising life science startups to international success. The network is inspired by MIT Venture Mentoring Service in the US, and NOME has close ties with the US life science ecosystem. The network is today the first Nordic mentor initiative with 30 C-level mentors and partnerships with Medicon Village in Southern Sweden, Turku Science Park in Finland, Oslo Cancer Cluster and Aleap in Norway and Karolinska Institutet Innovations AB in Stockholm in Northern Sweden. Read more about NOME here: www.nome.nu

Get the overview of Accelerace corporate innovation initiatives here: https://www.accelerace.io/innovation/

Trailblazing Accelerace alumni
Several startups in the Accelerace family are shortlisted at the Nordic Startup Awards. Chefmade is nominated as best the foodtech startup, Coinify as best fintech startup, LeapCraft as best IoT startup and Plantjammer as best foodtech startup.

The Danish finale is hosted by WeLoveStartups and will be held the 5th of September in Øksenehallen in Copenhagen as part of the annual tech startup summit TechBBQ. The Nordic finale is scheduled in Stockholm the 18th of October 2017 where the winners of each of the Nordic countries are represented.

Accelerace has previously won the award as the best professional investor in 2015 and the best accelerator program in 2015 & 2016 for our corporate accelerator, Next Step Challenge.

Feel free to vote for Accelerace here: To vote you need to go to Facebook via the following link and press vote http://bit.ly/2uo0fct

Do also vote for our cool startups in the Accelerace family who are nominated!

Best Foodtech startup: Chefmade (previously Neatmeal) http://bit.ly/2tPwODo

Best Fintech startup: Coinify http://bit.ly/2tovCDN

Best IoT startup: LeapCraft http://bit.ly/2tKUZBP

Best Foodtech startup: PlantJammer http://bit.ly/2tKMEhH

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Antag Therapeutics raises 3M USD in a Series A investment from Novo Seeds

2017-07-03

Antag Therapeutics, a NOME (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship) participant, has just secured a 3 million USD Series A investment from Novo Seeds for their promising hormone treatment to fight obesity, diabetes and fatty liver disease.

The global prevalence of diabetes has nearly doubled since 1980, rising from 4,7 % to 8,5% in the adult population and has become an important public health problem with a huge potential to reverse this epidemic. The Copenhagen University based biotech startup Antag Therapeutics recently raised 3M USD (20 million DKK) in funding from Novo Seeds to support the development of their GIP (Gastric inhibitory polypeptide) antagonist program to combat diabetes, obesity and fatty liver disease.

Antag joined the Accelerace life science accelerator and the NOME mentor network in early-2016 and have been working together diligently to commercialize the huge potential of the life science startup. The company was started by Alexander Sparre-Ulrich the CEO; whose PhD thesis was the foundation of their lead program. This new investment from Novo Seeds, who administer pre-seed investments on behalf of the Novo Nordisk Foundation, will bring Antag closer to the clinic.

“The investment will be used to develop drug in a way for it to stay in the body in the right amount of time to generate the right effect,” says CEO of Antag Therapeutics, Alexander Sparre-Ulrich to Børsen.

Major growth potential
This new therapeutic from Antag Therapeutics is an important drug in the treatment toolbox for patients suffering diabetes and fatty liver disease. The hormone treatment has blockbuster potential, like the Novo Nordisk GLP-1 will be injected to not only manage glucose levels but also impact fatty liver disease (NASH).

Novo Seeds has been investing in the biotech startup space since 2014 and is now scaling up the funding to fuel the strong growth trajectory of the startup.

Alexander Sparre-Ulrich CEO at Antag Therapeutics has said about his experiences with the NOME mentor network:

“Having access to such experienced and high profile professionals has had a huge impact on my project. Their advice sharpened my business plan significantly and led to progression in the negotiations with VCs, they introduced me to opportunities (both strategic and financial) which I was not aware of, and through their network, I have received important high-profile legal advice (pro-bono). Furthermore, I was invited to contact them on an ongoing basis which equipped me with an essential understanding of the pivotal points in VC investment terms seen from a founder’s perspective.”

Read the full story about Antag Therapeutics investment from Novo Seed in the following media:

BioCentry https://www.biocentury.com/bc-extra/financial-news/2017-06-28/novo-seeds-invests-%E2%82%AC27m-antag
Labiotech https://labiotech.eu/antag-therapeutics-startup-obesity/
Børsen (Danish) http://borsen.dk/nyheder/avisen/artikel/11/173675/artikel.html
Business DK (Danish) http://www.business.dk/medico/novo-ejer-investerer-i-potentiel-rival-til-novo-nordisk MedWatch (Danish) http://medwatch.dk/Medicinal___Biotek/article9679878.ece

Meet the startups in NOME here: http://nome.nu/startups/

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Accelerace kicks-off a new program round with 24 trailblazing startups

2017-06-26

After 5,000 screenings and 500 in-depth virtual meetings Accelerace is now ready to present the strongest 24 companies for the just kicked-off round of the 8-month accelerator program. Meet the startups here.

Accelerace has just begun working with 24 trailblazing startups as part of the Accelerace program. The startups all are characterized by the ability and high-potential to improve the quality of life and the environment with their promising innovations and disruptive technologies.

Among the startups are green tech startup Aqubiq, who has developed a smart water meter that can save each household 15% of water consumption and prevent water damage, Finnish life science and health care startup Peili Vision that provides neurological rehabilitation through virtual reality, foodtech startup Enorm that sells insect snacks as the sustainable protein source of the future, and tech startup Obi+ that provide services for connected cars and fleets.

24 startups, 8-months of business acceleration and 5 accelerator program
The startups join one of five accelerators focusing on technology, cleantech, foodtech, life science & biotech and medtech & health care as part of the Scale-up Denmark initiative. The accelerators also take in startups from around the globe incl. New York City, USA, Germany, Sweden and Finland.

Each Accelerace program is specially designed to scale ambitious and tenacious startups. Accelerace recently expanded the team to a total of 23 startup experts ready to bring their well-rounded experiences from venture capital firms, larger corporations, academia and as serial-entrepreneurs in play – all with a passion for innovation and creating startup winners.

Each startup will have a tailored program laid out to them and Accelerace expect that about 60% of the companies will raise capital during or immediately after graduating the program.

Meet the Accelerace team here: http://www.accelerace.io/team/ Read more about national Scale-up Denmark initiative here www.scale-updenmark.com

Get a quick rundown of the startups below or check them out on http://www.accelerace.io/family/

ACCELERACE CLEANTECH

Waturu (Denmark)
The most energy efficient and water-saving water heater that instantly gives you warm water and counteracts bacteria. https://www.waturu.com/

Aqubiq (Denmark)
Aqubiq is a green tech startup with a mission to deliver innovative solutions within water metering that changes how water is consumed around the world. http://aqubiq.com/en

Flow-loop (Denmark)
Flow-loop provide smart showering solutions for any bathroom. http://flow-loop.dk/

Coolar (Germany)
The Coolar system uses warm water that is easy to generate through solar energy and easy to store in a water tank. www.coolar.co

LO3 Energy (New York, US)
LO3 Energy is a technology and business development consulting firm with a focus on emerging decentralized business models and innovative technologies related to energy, cleantech and currency systems. http://lo3energy.com/

ACCELERACE FOODTECH

RETAP (Denmark)
Retap is a specially designed bottle for drinking tap water. http://www.retap.com/

PlantJammer (Denmark)
Discover surprising food pairings to jazz up your cooking. http://www.plantjammer.com/

FeelGoodCompany (Denmark)
RATION is a completely natural, simple and nutritious food bar.
https://www.rationworld.com/

TruuGum (Denmark)
TruuGum is an innovative chewing gum is 100% sugar-free and based on natural and sustainable ingredients.

YouSenseIT (Denmark)
YouSenseIT are specialists in creating shopping experiences in physical sales channels. http://www.yousenseit.com/

FaunaPhotonics (Denmark)
FaunaPhotonics monitor insects to ensure sustainable crop utilization and to improve tools for disease control and biodiversity for the benefit of mankind http://www.faunaphotonics.com/

Enorm (Denmark)
Enorm believes that insects are the sustainable protein source of the future and sells insect snacks produced in Denmark. http://www.enormfood.com

ACCELERACE TECHNOLOGY

Obiplus (Denmark)
OBI+ provide innovative services for connected vehicles and fleets.  http://obiplus.com/da/hjem/

Augmento (Denmark)
Augmento provides innovators with intelligence about emerging technologies and changing consumer needs. http://www.augmento.ai/

Chabs (Denmark)
Chabs is an online job market that connects companies with freelancers in the hotel, event and catering industry https://chabs.dk/

Botsupply (Denmark)
Botsupply is a team of bot creatives and AI scientists with one common goal: Blowing business objectives out of the water with bots and cognitive solutions. http://botsupply.co/

Swabkids (Denmark)
Swabkids is an app that makes life simple for modern families. http://swapkids.dk/

Sensative (Sweden)
Sensative develops practical IoT products and platforms for everyday use. http://www.sensative.com/

ACCELERACE LIFE SCIENCES & BIOTECH / MEDTECH & HEALTH CARE

Saninudge (Denmark)
Saninudge connects hand hygiene to the cloud in hospitals. Saninudge’s sensor network collects real-time data on compliance, improving staff habits over time with increased accountability. http://saninudge.com/

ODity.bio (Denmark)
ODity.bio provide innovative laboratory equipment that enables both speed-up and cost reduction in biosustainable research. http://www.odity.bio/

AlcoWhey (Denmark) AlcoWhey has developed a new technology for conversion of the residual lactose in side streams from the dairy industries.

Mosspiration Biotech (Denmark) Mosspiration Biotech uses moss as a green cell factory to produce small natural products. https://www.mosspirationbiotech.com/

GDV Technology (Denmark)
GDV technology has developed a sore protective bed for the health care sector that automates pressure relief and streamlines manual transfers of patients. http://www.gdvtech.com/en/

Peili Vision (Finland)
Peili Vision provides neurological rehabilitation in virtual reality http://peilivision.fi/

Read more about the current batch here http://www.accelerace.io/family/
Read more about Scale-up Denmark here: www.scale-updenmark.com

 

 

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NOME welcomes four new high-potential Nordic life science startups

2017-05-29

NOME (The Nordic mentor network for entrepreneurship) has engaged with four exciting life science startups. These companies come from a diverse range of technologies, personalized medicine in cancer, a diagnostic for joint damage, a stem cell therapy in diabetes and a company working in artificial intelligence to help diabetes patients manage their disease.
NOME (The Nordic mentor network for entrepreneurship) – which is operated by Accelerace and funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation – has engaged with four exciting life science startups.  These companies come from a diverse range of technologies, personalized medicine in cancer, a diagnostic for joint damage, a stem cell therapy in diabetes and a company working in artificial intelligence to help diabetes patients manage their disease.

These NOME startups will now meet regularly with a team of experienced business mentors within their field, who will advise and support them to help them realize their goal of providing tools and therapies to patients.

As a part of the program, NOME also provides a unique opportunity for the startups to participate in US a boot camp, where the companies get access to a US network of advisors who will help with strategy and introduce them to possible partners, investors and collaborators.

Meet the NOME Mentors here: http://nome.nu/mentors/  
Meet the new NOME Startups here: http://nome.nu/startups/

Orthogenics (Norway) is leading in the field of joint replacement diagnostics. Orthogenics has identified a specific biomarker that is persistently detected in synovial tissue of the joint and correlates strongly with prosthesis failure. The aim is to generate a new product line for molecular diagnostics of prosthesis loosening.
Read more on http://www.orthogenics.no/

SAGA Diagnostics (Sweden) is a personalized cancer medicine and disease monitoring company.
Their tests quantify circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) — a powerful new biomarker — to detect cancer, measure response to therapy, and decipher the cancer-specific DNA mutations that may be targetable with clinically approved drugs or therapies currently in clinical trials.
Read more on http://sagadiagnostics.com/

Hedia (Denmark) is a personal diabetes-assistant, based on artificial intelligence that picks up patterns and habits of the individual diabetic patient.  Hedia has developed an app with a simple and intuitive design that will allow diabetics to enter; blood sugar levels, their meal, level of activity, to then get a suggested insulin dosage. Hedia learns from the data diabetics enter, so Hedia becomes smarter, to provide better advice when used regularly.
Read more on http://hedia.dk/

PanCryos (Denmark) is a spin out company arising from DanStem, University of Copenhagen, aiming to develop a next generation stem cell derived allogenic cell therapy (PanINSULA™) for Type 1 diabetes. PanCryos has assembled a team with experts in stem cell biology, islet transplantations, business and regulatory guidance and is currently funded by pre-seed funding from Novo Seeds and a KU POC grant.
Read more on:  http://danstem.ku.dk/research1/semb_laboratory/ameri-project/

Get an overview of all the NOME participants here: http://nome.nu/startups/

About NOME
The Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship (NOME) is a Nordic and Transatlantic mentoring program that aims to improve the success rate of life science startup companies located in the Nordic countries. The mentor network consists of high profile life science executives that mentor best in class start-ups. NOME aims to position the Nordic region in a leading position in commercializing promising startup companies in the life sciences. NOME currently has +31 mentors and 11 enrolled startups. NOME is operated by Accelerace and funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation. The initiative is represented in the Nordic region and the US through partnerships in Sweden, Norway, Finland and in North Carolina in the US. Read more on www.nome.nu

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Investment: MonTa BioSciences raises investment for promising cancer treatment

2017-03-10

The Copenhagen-based biotech company MonTa BioSciences Aps has just raised 2 million DKK from the incubator Pre-Seed Innovation for their promising cancer treatment. Their new cancer drug is designed to actively train the body’s immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells.

Five Danish entrepreneurs from the company MonTa BioSciences have raised €270,000 from the incubator Pre-Seed Innovation and it is well underway in developing an innovative cancer immunotherapeutic treatment. The Danish entrepreneurs have found a method in which the body’s immune system is trained to actively recognize and fight cancer cells. The treatment makes use of nanoparticles of less than one ten thousandth of a millimeter, which is able to deliver an immune activating substance specific for the immune system’s major cell types.

MonTa BioSciences is part of the Accelerace life science accelerrator and the international elite Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship (NOME) which is organized by the Novo Nordisk Foundation and Accelerace.

“Often cancer cells avoid being detected on the immune system’s radar, but we can now give the immune system a solid boost, so it can recognize and fight cancer cells more effectively than we see today,” says Simon Skjøde Jensen, Ph.D. and CEO of Monta Biosciences, and continues:

“With the investment from Pre-Seed Innovation, we can now take the next steps to develop our treatment and come closer to getting the technology to market. It is a big step in the right direction, and together with our previous investment from the Innovation Fund Denmark, we now have a good base to build an even stronger product that will provide unique opportunities for further development and attraction of strategic partnerships and investments.”

MonTa BioSciences’ treatment is unique since it can advantageously be combined with a large proportion of the current treatments available on the market, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, antibody based therapy, such as Rituximab or Darzalex, as well as the highly successful immune checkpoint inhibitors, which have been approved over the last year and already used to treat against melanoma and lung cancer.

Strong network and management team
MonTa BioSciences started as a spinout from DTU Nanotech Department of Micro- and Nanotechnology and it is today part of the international mentoring initiative for life science companies, Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship (NOME), which is organized by the Novo Nordisk Foundation and the startup accelerator Accelerace. The mentor network provides access to experienced biotech entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial ecosystems in life science in Europe and in the United States and gives startups training and mentorship from some of the most experienced professionals in the Nordics.

“Research and new methods continuously provide innovations and new ways to diagnose and treat cancers that have a positive effect in fighting cancer. MonTa BioSciences new cancer drug is both a visionary and a promising treatment method that could potentially increase survival rates among cancer patients significantly. MonTa BioSciences has an experienced and skilled team and with we expect a lot of with the investment from Pre-Seed Innovation, “says Peter Birk, PhD, business accelerator in Accelerace and NOME and biotech investment manager in Pre-Seed Innovation.

MonTa BioSciences platform immunotherapy can potentially also be used for treating other diseases where the immune system has a critical role, such as autoimmune diseases including multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes, but also in allergic diseases. Monta Biosciences will initially focus on completing the new cancer agent.

Read more at Monta Biosciences http://montabiosciences.com/, Pre-seed Innovation http://www.preseedinnovation.dk/ & Accelreace www.accelerace.dk that administers Pre-seed innovation biotech investments.

 

About MonTa BioSciences Aps
MonTa BioSciences is a Danish biotech company that has developed a new immunotherapeutic treatment particularly for cancer treatment. With MonTa BioSciences’ treatment, the body’s immune system is trained to recognize and eliminate cancer cells. MonTa BioSciences is today part of the accelerator Accelerace and NOME (Nordic Mentor Network of Entrepreneurship), which is an international mentor network for particularly promising life science companies. Read more about MonTa BioSciences here: http://montabiosciences.com

About Pre-Seed Innovation
Pre-seed innovation is the biggest innovation incubator in Denmark that invests in high-tech solutions. Pre-seed innovation was established in 2009 as a merger between DTU Innovation and Symbion and today works closely with the investment fund SEED Capital. The biotech investments is administered by the accelerator Accelerace who spots, trains and invests in promising startups. Read more on http://www.preseedinnovation.dk/

About Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship
Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship (NOME) is a best in class mentoring initiative that raises the business potential for promising life science startup companies in the Nordic region. NOME is organized by Accelerace and based on a Novo Nordisk Foundation initiative. The ambition is to build a network of the highest international quality to position Denmark and the Nordic region in a leading position in the commercialization of promising research initiatives and startup companies in the life sciences. NOME currently has 26 mentors and 7 enrolled startups. The initiative is represented in the Nordic region and the US through partnerships with Medicon Village in Sweden, Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator, Oslo Medtech, and Commonweal in North Carolina in the US. Read more on www.nome.nu

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IMPACT GROWTH: a partner accelerator with €3.6 million for startups

2017-03-06

European accelerator IMPACT is launching IMPACT GROWTH, a new acceleration program led by ISDI and Accelerace with a fund of €3.6 million and the final aim of identifying four European super startups. In the first stage of the program, IMPACT Growth will finance 28 startups with €100,000, equity free.

The program, which was launched on February 27 at 4YFN Barcelona, the startup event of Mobile World Capital Barcelona and GSMA, ​​is focused on four verticals and aimed at startups from all over the world in the growth phase, with products that are already in the market. Furthermore, startups should have the potential to achieve Seed and Series A round financing at the end of the acceleration program, to access capital already focused on scalability and international growth. The four verticals are: Smart Infrastructure & Cities, Smart Content, Smart Manufacturing, and Smart AgriFood.

As in IMPACT’s previous programs, funding will go hand in hand with a high-performance startup training program in which renowned experts and international entrepreneurs will deliver practical classes in Madrid, Copenhagen, and Barcelona. In addition, entrepreneurs will have access to an international network of more than one hundred recognized mentors, founders, and investors who are experts in different key areas of knowledge, both in the digital sector and in the accelerator’s four verticals.

Mentors will help startups solve complex issues related to business, technology, and scalability. Following the acceleration phase of the program, two startups selected from the batch of 28 will also receive an additional €150,000 equity free, and the best four will have the opportunity to get up to €1.5 million in private investment from Kibo Ventures and Accelerace.

Startups will receive support from the FIWARE Foundation in incorporating FIWARE technologies into their software architecture. FIWARE is an innovative, open source, and cloud-based technology stack  that eases the creation and global deployment of smart services and applications in the new Digital era.

The search for four “super startups”

An important aspect of this new program is the creation of four acceleration verticals. Each vertical is supported by a large international organization that will act as a mentor to selected projects, offering focused expertise and the possibility of future partnerships. The areas are:

  • Smart Infrastructure & Cities, supported by Ferrovial Servicios;
  • Smart Content, with DOCOMO Digital as leader;
  • Smart AgriFood, led by Danone;
  • Smart Manufacturing, partnered with MADE (Lego).

The startups selected for this specific plan will be incorporated into a demanding acceleration program led by ISDI and Accelerace and supported by the multinationals that are part of the project. These startups will be able to access world-class events and top-level mentors as well as the private financing of €1.5 million led by Kibo Ventures and Accelerace.

IMPACT Growth is accepting applications on their website until May 9th, 2017.

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Accelerace takes in seven high-profile startups

2017-02-13

Accelerace has just kicked off a new round of the eight-month accelerator program. The new startups in Accelerace consists of technology & life science companies, among others Digisec who can segment the market for digital add space, LassoX who deliveres robot generated business news and Antag who’s fighting obesity.

Here’s a quick rundown of the companies in the new round of Accelerace:

Technology startups

Deemly deemly is a reputation site, which shows the trustworthiness of users engaging in peer-to-peer transactions by combining ratings and reviews from multiple peer-to-peer platforms, such as Airbnb, ebay, and UpWork. http://deemly.co/

Talking Ninja Learn a new language in 90 days. http://talking.ninja/

Digisec For the first time ever you are able to segment the entire market of Digital Add Space. We call it “Add Full Reach” http://www.digiseg.io

LassoX LassoX is a Danish robot generated business news platform. News stories are written based on public available records about all Danish companies. Read more on https://lassox.com/

Capty Capty suppies photo books and print solutions that supports easy implementation from social media. Capty has among other developed the wedding picture app wedbox.dk Read more on www.capty.dk

Life Science startups

Antag Antag is working on a promising hormone treatment to fight obesity.

VasDeBlock VasDeBlock is the alternative male contraception method that is non-surgical, hormone-free, and easily reversible. Read more on www.vasdeblock.com

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Alumni news: The Eye Tribe acquired by Facebook

2017-01-06

Soon you’ll be able to control your VR-experience using the eye tracking technology by the Danish startup The Eye Tribe who just got acquired by Oculus owned by Facebook.

The startup was accelerated by Accelerace in 2012 and have now come a long way on the global tech scene with their technology that precisely determines your on-screen gaze position on smartphones, and potentially for virtual reality headsets in the forthcoming years.

According to TechCrunch the eye tracking technology is currently very promising in making VR-experience more life-like. Other uses are auto-scrolling of an on screen text or sheet music while reading or playing an instrument while gaze analytics can prove to collect valuable insights as to where people are looking when using an app or a technological product.

The Eye Tribe have previously taken investments from Startup Bootcamp and the Danish National Advanced Technology Foundation. The price of the acquisition by Facebook is yet undisclosed.

Watch the YouTube video of how the technology works here:

Read more on

TechCrunch https://techcrunch.com/2016/12/28/the-eye-tribe-oculus/
VentureBeat http://venturebeat.com/2016/12/28/facebook-acquires-eye-tracking-company-the-eye-tribe/
DR http://www.dr.dk/nyheder/penge/facebook-koeber-dansk-virksomhed

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Meet the 17 new startups in Accelerace

2016-11-24

Seventeen world-class startups are now ready to take on their 6-8 month Accelerace journey from startup to scaleup.

In the fall of 2016 Accelerace launched five new startup accelerators with focus on information communication technology, foodtech, cleantech and life science & welfaretech as part of the Scale-up Denmark initiative. The first batch of startups in the five new accelerators has just begun their journey to scale their startup.

Among the new companies are Sensohive who have made high-performance wireless temperature IoT-sensors for restaurants, or Praice who has built a new innovative HR-platform, or Relibond who has developed innovative high-voltage cable assemblies that are 30% more effective than conventional solutions. In the life science & welfaretech accelerators skilled startups on Ph.D.-level are working on new innovative cancer treatment solutions. Among the 17 companies are also TellSpec from Canada, Qarnot Computing and Sensewaves from France.

Business school for startups

During the next 6-8 months the startups will gain access to 200 hours of consulting with an experienced serial-entrepreneurs, camps, labs and a wide network to partners such as Maersk, Novo Nordisk Foundation, Agro Business Park, Clean and Insero. After completing the program startups have the opportunity to raise a seed-investment round to further boost their company’s growth trajectory.

Accelerace will attract up to 1500 Danish and international startups over the next few years as part of Scale-up Denmark. The programs will not just be for Danish companies, but also for international entrepreneurs with an interest in the European market and will use the strong ecosystem in Denmark as a springboard for further growth.

Meet the 17 high-potential startup companies below.

 

Tech

Production Hero Production hero has developed a planning and scheduling tool to simplify TV production http://clickacrew.com/

Traede – Traede has developed a highly effective B2B eCommerce platform to make sales easy http://traede.com/

Praice Praice is your personality profile, built by feedback from your network. Praice enables a credible communication of personality, because it avoids the shortcomings of traditional personality tests, based on self-reporting. https://praice.com/

 

Food tech

Landmad Aims to connect the local farms with urban consumers to say goodbye to industrial production and hello to good quality directly from the field, garden or stable. http://landmad.dk/

Neatmeal Neatmeal is an online portal for private dining.

Kastberg High quality homemade Italian ice cream. http://www.kastberg-is.dk/

Sensohive High-performance wireless temperature sensor for restaurants. http://sensohive.com/

TellSpec TellSpec is a data company that offers real time, affordable, reliable, nondestructive, handheld food analysis. http://tellspec.com/

Nohrlund Nohrlund offers a wide range of highly praised ecological bottled cocktails. http://www.nohrlund.dk/

 

Clean Tech

QarnotComputing (from France) Has built the first computing heater for smart buildings.This allows you to get free heating, while selling CPU power. www.qarnot-computing.com

Sensewaves (from France) Sensewaves delivers adaptive analytics for the internet of things. www.sensewaves.io

LeapCraft Leapcraft is a new age global innovation provider working with user centered design, big data and technology exploration. http://leapcraft.dk/

Relibond – ReliBond IVS has developed innovative high-voltage cable assemblies that are 30% more effective than conventional solutions. http://www.relibond.com/

 

Life Sciences and welfare tech

Monta Biosciences MonTa Biosciences is a start-up biotech company who is active in immuno-Oncology with a focus on cancer immunotherapy. http://montabiosciences.com/

Immunitrack Immunitrack is a novel spin-out company from the University of Copenhagen that builds on more than a decade of research in the neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn) and Major Histocompablility Complex Molecules (MHC). http://immunitrack.com/

Askari Askari develops novel therapeutic agents against worm infections in hens, pigs and other production animals that could save millions in production loss for the farmers.

Hedia Hedia is a personal diabetes-assistant, based on artificial intelligence that picks up patterns and habits of the individual diabetic. http://hedia.dk/

Next application deadline is December 15th 2016.
Read and apply on www.accelerace.dk/accelerators

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Accelerace expands with 5 new programs

2016-09-17

Accelerace now offers 5 new accelerator programs for talented Danish and international high-growth companies in ICT, welfare technology, clean tech, life science and biotechnology as well as food. This is done as part of the Region’s Scale-Up Denmark initiative in cooperation with several leading partners such as Maersk and Novo Nordisk Fonden, who is opening the doors for learning, knowledge sharing and networking with startups.

Accelerace has just been selected to run half of the 10 acceleration environments in Scale-Up Denmark and the programs are expected to attract no less than 1,500 Danish and international startups over the next three years.

Peter Torstensen, CEO of Accelerace says: “The programs will not just be for Danish companies, but also for international entrepreneurs with an interest on the European market and will use the strong ecosystem in Denmark as a springboard for further growth,” and continues:

“We are looking for entrepreneurs like elite swimmer Pernille Blume – i.e. talent, which has not yet fully expanded are able to do it with the right help. With our specialized training and experience from 300 startups, I believe that we are best to unleash the talented entrepreneurs’ investment potential.”

Programs with industry focus and specialization

Both in Denmark and abroad, accelerator programs have typically been targeted at IT startups.

But now Accelerace launches 5 new industry-specific accelerators based in different regional hubs in Denmark. The new programs will ensure a more customized approach and delivery of highly specialized industry knowledge, and will count startups in the fields of ICT, welfare technology, clean tech, life science and biotechnology as well as food.

Applications are now open for registrations for both Danish and international companies, and aims to mature companies to raise seed capital and venture capital.

Corporate cooperation to ensure network and expertise

In connection with the start of the new programs Accelerace has also signed a number of partnerships with major Danish companies, including Maersk.

Anneli Bartholdy, Innovation Portfolio Manager in Maersk Maritime Technology, says about the cooperation:

“Maersk needs new solutions to meet our existing business challenges and at the same time, we need to grow. The cooperation with Accelerace is an important part of this, where we hope to spot interesting startups that can solve our challenges and challenge our way of thinking. In this way, we learn more about how an accelerator can help our business interests, while we also have the opportunity to support the growth and maturation of new companies ”

For startups, collaboration with established companies is a unique opportunity to access their network and expertise and to test their product.

Claus Harbo, CEO of Zertify, which has developed a method of standard software for managing certificates that are particularly relevant in the offshore industry, says of the initiative:

“It’s exciting that Accelerace can now take their concept one step further and make the programs available internationally and even more industry specific. And cooperation with established companies such as Maersk is a great strength, because as a startup – in dialogue with the company – can adapt its product in relation to market requirements, increasing the likelihood of success and scale. ”

Applications are open now for the first batch starting in November 2016.

Apply and read more here. 

Read the full story in Børsen

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Instamic wins 1st place and €250,000 in the Next Step Challenge startup competition

2016-09-13

The San Francisco startup Instamic has won the 1st prize of €250,000 in the international Next Step Challenge accelerator program and startup competition based in Denmark. The startup was awarded 1st prize for their unique ‘GoPro of microphones’ that’s smart, small, affordable and easy to operate.

Instamic has developed a tiny smart microphone that’s ideal for musicians, filmmakers, journalists, bloggers or anyone who need a simple and effective means of capturing sound. The idea started in San Francisco in the start of 2015 when filmmaker and documentarist Michele Baggio saw a huge market need for professionals and consumers to capture audio like they never imagined before. Today the tiny, wearable, wireless & waterproof Instamic microphone is on the market and set a whole new standard in recording.

During the last eight months Instamic has been competing in the Next Step Challenge startup competition against 15 international startups within two program tracks: Sound & Home Integration and Smart Energy & Digitalization. In a public award show on September 7th in Denmark Instamic was selected as the winner of the 2016 program among 15 high-potential growth startup companies.

“We are incredibly happy to win the Next Step Challenge 2016 in fierce competition with many highly skilled entrepreneurs and startup companies from around the world. The Next Step Challenge program has been intense and brought our business plan, sales and marketing strategy to the next level,” says Michele Baggio, CEO of Instamic, and continues: “We moved to Denmark to gain access to the European market and brand Instamic with a strong Danish touch. In only one year from our crowdfunding campaign we went really far and winning the €250,000 prize is an amazing achievement. We are full of joy and energy and can’t wait to get back to work and find talents in the audio industry in the Silicon Valley of Sound.”

Huge market potential
During the Next Step Challenge program, the startups have been mentored and accelerated by Accelerace and been able to test their technology and gain access to skilled experts within their fields in Danish utility company SE and the Danish design icon and consumer electronics company Bang & Olfusen A/S. The startup companies were all judged by their business opportunities, team, development through the program, growth potential and how they were going to use the prize money.

Søren Bech, head of research at Bang & Olfusen A/S and member of the jury says: “It was a close race this year but Instamic stood out on several areas. They are ready to market their technology, their production is already up and running and they have identified a clear need in the market. During the program they have built a network with the Danish world-class audio R&D organizations to optimize their product and business.”

Peter Torstensen, CEO of Accelerace, who was part of the Next Step Challenge judging panel says: ”It has been a difficult decision for the judging panel since the competition is full of talented startups with incredible ideas and innovative foresights about the technology of the future which can be developed in Denmark. Instamic wins the first prize for the solution to digitalize and revolutionize an industry. During the program they have developed their technology and attracted many new customers. We believe they have a huge potential.”

Lisbeth Valher CEO of SE Next Step says: ”Next Step Challenge has a high international standard and have created the ideal test environment for the development of new innovative technologies. Over the course of three years we have invited high-potential companies from all over the world to join.  We believe that the combination of many global leads, a focused selection process, a systematic innovation process, close partnership with larger corporations and a strong network of mentors is the right combination to create success. The companies are all seeking to develop the technologies of tomorrow whose success can pave the way for other new technologies.”

Instamic has been on the fast track since they started in 2015 and recently raised an impressive $400,000 on the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo to produce, market and ship the Instamic microphone to their more than 3000 backers.

The Next Step Challenge investors’ choice award of 25,000 DKK plus two exclusive Bang & Olufsen speakers went to fintech and iBanking startup Cogni from Ireland and Australia.

See Instamic’s spotlight video here:

Read more about the Next Step Challenge participants here: http://nextstepchallenge.com/participants/

Read more about Instamic here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/instamic-the-smartest-microphone-ready-to-record-video-music

Read more about Cogni here: http://www.cogninow.com/

During the Next Step Challenge program all companies have been interviewed about their startup and the startups have also produced a short video. Read Instamic’s interview and watch their video here: http://nextstepchallenge.com/portfolio_item/instamic/

Also, we captured the announcement of the winner on Facebook – view it here: https://www.facebook.com/NextStepChallenge/videos/vb.200673160056479/387139314743195/?type=2&theater

Participating companies: Certware (Denmark),Cinemood (Russia), Cogni (Ireland/Australia), DFT (Cleveland, USA), EEme (Pittsburg, USA), Instamic (San Francisco, USA), Linguoo (Uruguay), Okeanos Technologies (Cincinnati, USA), Qarnot Computing (France), Sensewaves (France, Greece), Shared Electric (Switzerland), Soledge (France), Telewander (Chile, Russia), Tracktl (France), Zylia (Poland).

http://nextstepchallenge.com/participants/

About Next Step Challenge

The Next Step Challenge is a Danish internationally focused accelerator program and startup competition that supports promising startups through a 8-month program, which will all be wrapped up at an award show where €250.000 is granted to the winning startup. The program has participants from USA, Greece, Australia, Uruguay, Poland and many more. All companies have products within the two program tracks Sound & Home Integration and Smart Energy & Digitalization. The competing startups are all relocated to Next Step City in Esbjerg and Nupark in Holstebro. The Next Step Challenge is created by Accelerace, SE, Bang & Olufsen A/S, FærchFonden, Nupark & The Region of Southern Denmark. Read more about the Next Step Challenge on www.nextstepchallenge.com

Instamic wins Next Step Challenge 2016. Photo by Christina Simonia Straarup.

The happy Instamic team after winning Next Step Challenge and the 1stprize of €250,000. From left: Sandra Åkerling and Michele Baggio, CMO & CEO at Instamic. Photo by Christina Simonia Straarup.

The Instamic microphone in action. Photo by Instamic.

Instamic – the world’s smartest microphone. Photo by Instamic

 

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Accelerace Invest: Donkey Republic raises double-digit Series A investment

2016-07-19

In January 2016 the bike-share startup Donkey Republic raised a pre-seed investment round with participation from Accelerace Invest. Today – seven months later – they have raised a double-digit Series A investment from the Danish venture fond VF Venture and Luxemburg-based VC Howzat. That makes it one of the fastest Series A investments in the history of Accelerace Invest.

The bicycle makes sense in cities. With the rising urbanization the bike offers a great way to move around on two wheels and there are many social, economic, environmental, safety and public health benefits of urban cycling. The bike-share startup Donkey Republic are well aware of these benefits and has combined the global trends of urban cycling and sharing economy. With a new double-digit Series A investment the startup is looking to scale their business internationally.

Donkey Republic offers a simple and easy way for tourists, commuters and others to get around. Just book a bike online and unlock it from a smartphone 24/7, in Copenhagen or other cities around the world.

Erdem Ovacik CEO of Donkey Republic says: “We are looking to export the Danish culture of urban cycling which the support from Accelerace and now the series A investment from VF Venture and Howzat has paved the road for. The experience, knowledge and network of the Accelerace Invest team has been of great value to us and have played a big part in getting us to where we are today. We are thrilled with the new Series A investment that has made it possible to take in new skilled team members and expand to new markets.”

From pre-seed investment to series A in seven months
The startup has been on the fast track ever since it was established in 2014 in downtown Copenhagen by the four skilled entrepreneurs, Erdem Ovacik, Alexander Frederiksen, Rune Kokholm and Jens Frandsen. In the fall of 2015 they got accepted into the Accelerace program and later in 2016 raised a pre-seed-investment with participation from Accelerace Invest. Since then the startup has gotten more than 500 bikes on the streets of Denmark, Sweden, USA, Great Britain, Spain and New Zealand.

The new Series A investment where VF Venture has invested 10M DKK and Howzat has invested a couple of million DKK acording to Børsen. This makes it one of the fastes Series A investments in the history of Accelerace Invest.

David Ventzel, investment manager at Accelerace Invest says: “Donkey Republic is a one-of-a-kind startup with international potential and a great team of ‘go-getters’ with lots of startup passion and an ability to learn and adapt when necessary. This has been crucial for us in Accelerace Invest when we invested in the startup in early 2016. We are truly pleased about their Series A investment and look forward to be part of their exciting road ahead.”

With the new investment Donkey Republic aims to get 2000 donkey-bikes on the street in 2016 and 10,000 internationally over the upcoming years.

Read more on www.donkey.bike.

Video: Donkey Republic. The global community of smart bike sharers

Read more about Donkey Republic’s investment on the following links

VF Venture – Vækstfonden – Donkey Republic: Dansk koncept ofr dele-cykler ruller ud i verden

Børsen – Cykel-branchens svar på Airbnb? Iværksættere henter millioner til kæmpe satsning.

Donkey Republic on stage in March 2016 at Nordic Startup Conference as winner of the Battle Of The Vikings Nordic pitch competition organized by Accelerace.

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Graduateland acquires Madrid-based startup, Tyba, and expands in Southern Europe

2016-06-30

Accelerace Alumni, Graduateland, has acquired the popular recruitment platform, Tyba, in a move that will allow the Copenhagen-based startup to help an even greater number of students and graduates to take off in their careers. Additionally, Graduateland will now provide both large companies and startups with a more diverse pool of talented candidates.

By purchasing Tyba- a leading Spanish recruitment platform focused on startups and Internet companies, Graduateland- Europe´s largest career network for students and graduates, has set on a journey to reach higher heights by unlocking the potential offered by the promising Spanish market.

Patrick Lund, CEO and Co-founder of Graduateland explains the reasons behind the acquisition: “Expanding within our existing market of students and graduates, as well as coupling the attractive segment of startup companies made Tyba the obvious acquisition target.The potential to service our users grows exponentially by integrating what Tyba has created over the last four years”. According to Patrick, Graduateland will now be in a better position to focus on the developing Spanish startup segment, and bridge talented students and graduates with career opportunities in the startup ecosystem.

Additionally, the acquisition has also been welcomed by recruiting managers. Lise Emilie Fritzboeger, Employer Branding & HR at Siemens, considers that Graduateland makes it easier for companies to target and attract students and graduates of different nationalities.

Graduateland participated in the Accelerace accelerator program in the fall of 2012 and later raised seed investments from Accelerace Invest twice, summing 5 million DKK. Jesper Knudsen, partner in Accelerace & Chairman of the Board at Graduateland, considers that through the acquisition of Tyba, Graduateland keeps pace with nowadays higher demand for talent mobility, making it easier for students to relocate in other European countries.

Graduateland is bringing together companies, students and universities and creating a large career network for almost 500.000 students and graduates. Currently, more than 25 European universities have implemented the solution, including Copenhagen Business School in Denmark, Lund University and Stockholm University in Sweden and KU Leuven in Belgium.
Read Graduateland’s official announcement here: http://graduateland.com/customer/article/Graduateland-acquires-Tyba And read the story on TechCrunch here: http://techcrunch.com/2016/04/19/tyba-exit/

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Alumni news: Coinify announces new partnership with Nets

2016-06-28

Accelerace Alumni Coinify has entered a partnership with FinTech giants, Nets. Together they have established a Blockchain Development Lab to unlock and utilize the potential of the bitcoin technology.

There is strong potential in the field of blockchain technology and two of Europe’s the biggest players in digital and blockchain payments have set out on a journey to explore and capitalize on the opportunities. The new partnership between Coinify and Nets enables cooperation with internationally renowned experts in the field, in order to develop new concepts as the basis for creating specific products and services. Mark Højgaard, CEO and Co-founder of Coinify considers that the partnership will enable both companies to provide first-class products and services for key stakeholders such as consumers and businesses. Furthermore, through the partnership, both companies aim to increase the commercial applicability of the blockchain technology within high security standards.

Jan C. Plenge, Senior Vice President of Digital Innovaton at Nets, considers the partnership with Coinify as an excellent step towards a thorough understanding of the disruptive potential that blockchain technology has. In 2014 Accelerace invested in Coinify, partner and investor at Accelerace, Jesper Knudsen says on LinkedIn (http://bit.ly/1spJ34y): “We are very pleased to see Coinify getting accredited by the major players within the payment industry. At Accelerace we are pleased to be part of this journey and congratulate the team for their professionalism.”

Read more about Coinify here: https://news.coinify.com/

You can also read more about the partnership between Coinify and Nets in the following news articles:

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Next Step Challenge wins best accelerator award at Nordic Startup Awards

2016-05-17

The Accelerace partner project Next Step Challenge has won the award as best accelerator program for the second consecutive year the Nordic Startup Awards 2016.

The annual Nordic Startup Awards event recognizes, celebrate and connect the Nordic startup ecosystems by putting a focus on startups, founders, CTO’s, journalists, investors and accelerators who have excelled during the year in the Nordic countries. The Danish national finale was held in Industriens hus in Copenhagen and organized by WeLoveStartups for a great night of networking, inspiring speakers and celebration.

Søren Lottrup partner at Accelerace says: ”It’s a great honor to win the prestigious award as best Danish accelerator at the Nordic Startup Awards and we are very proud to win the award for the second consecutive year. The last year has been eventful with the expansion of a new program track focusing on Sound & Home Integration, which makes Next Step Challenge one of the only accelerators globally to focus on scalable companies in this area. We are looking forward to the regional finale of Nordic Startup Awards where we’ll be competing against top accelerators.”

Next Step Challenge won the title as Best Danish Accelerator for creating the best startup environment for growth and innovation and for fostering startups with the best financial results. The award was based upon the number of public votes and the decision of a panel of six expert judges who were looking at criteria such as funding offered in the nominated accelerators and also equity (%), success rate, knowledge, critical resources available, the startups in the program and number of public votes.

Eight months of business acceleration
Since the launch in 2013 the program has received 800 applications from more than 70 countries from around the world. Next Step Challenge has a 1stprize of €250,000 with no equity taken and a startup survival rate of 90%. Fifteen high-potential startups have just joined the third batch and have begun their 8 months of business acceleration and the competition for Europe’s largest entrepreneurial prize. The winner of Next Step Challenge 2016 will be announced in the fall of 2016.

“The accelerator model in Next Step Challenge is based on the hard work of all involved, both our corporate partners at Bang & Olufsen A/S, Nupark, Færchfonden and SE and not the least on the many hours of business acceleration the participants get from skilled Accelerace consultants who are entrepreneurs themselves.” says Søren Lottrup.

The Next Step Challenge accelerator model offers more than 200 hours of consultancy with skilled consultants and throughout the program the startups will be taken through an intense timeline of activities with focus on testing startup hypothesis and fine tuning the startup’s value proposition & beach head, partnerships, marketing, customer discovery and sales processes. The program also includes mentoring from US based MBA’s from UNC-Chapel Hill university and pitch training to get startups ready for their investor pitch at the award show where the winner of the 1st prize of €250,000 is found.

Read more about Nordic Startup Awards here: http://nordicstartupawards.com/
Read more about the Next Step Challenge here: www.nextstepchallenge.com

The Nordic finale takes place in Iceland the 30th of May where Next Step Challenge is up against top accelerator such as STING from Sweden, Startup Reykjavik from Iceland, Angel Challenge from Norway and Startup Sauna from Finland.

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Accelerace Life: Enixus Baltics and Rīga Stradiņš University Team up to Bring Great Science Closer to Market

2016-04-26

Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU) has awarded Enixus Baltics (representing Accelerace in the Baltics) a contract to bring as many as five research based technologies closer to market.

Enixus will use local and international coaches, specialists, and trainers to help RSU researchers learn the entrepreneurial skills they need to bring their research to paying markets. This project will result in as many as four commercial offerings from RSU, increased awareness among RSU faculty of the possibility to commercialize research, and more international awareness of RSU as a strong partner for commercialization.

RSU is a Strong Regional Research Player

RSU is one of the Baltic region’s strongest teaching and research institutions and focuses on health and bioscience. One particularly strong area at RSU is in research of infectious diseases and immunology. The European Union recognized this in funding the 7th Framework program project “Baltinfect – Unlocking Infectious diseases research potential ar Riga Stradiņš University”.

In addition to promoting and developing high quality research, the Baltinfect project has striven to develop the intellectual property growing from this research. In the summer of 2014, Enixus helped to create an intellectual property development strategy, and now the time has come to try and bring the best RSU research closer to market.

Enixus and Accelerace to Lead RSU Research to Market

Enixus and Accelerace will manage an acceleration process that will explore how best to bring RSU intellectual property to market. While most ideas will not get to market in the 5 months of the process, ultimately these ideas and their owners will have a clear plan to market. Enixus and Accelerace will provide seminars and trainings in areas of entrepreneurship such as business modeling, use of LEAN tools, and creating strong partnerships. Also, experts will share opinions about the strength of the legal protection of the intellectual property. Researchers and idea promoters will also travel to Copenhagen where they will visit the Copenhagen Biosciences Park to work with carefully selected experts and potential partners.

Tom Schmit (Associate Partner – Accelerace), says that “this is a great opportunity to extend our cooperation with RSU and bring their projects closer to market. In our two years of work, we have developed a real understanding of their research and how much of it could really benefit so many.”

Broad Impact for RSU and Latvia

Not only RSU faculty will benefit. Many of the seminars and other events will be open to a wider Latvian science research public. Researchers from other institutions will be invited to the events.

Dr. Julija Voicehovska is a professor and internal medicine specialist at RSU and has worked with Accelerace. “I worked with Accelerace two years ago in Accelerace Life. I know that not only do they have great expertise, but also understand the science we have. I learned much that I still use in evaluating my own research choices.”

The capstone for the participants in the acceleration process will be presentations to local and international investors as well as other potential partners.

Enixus represents Accelerace in Latvia. Accelerace, based in Denmark, is Scandinavia’s leading accelerator and among the Top 10 accelerator programs and investors in Europe.

Read more about Accelerace Life here

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Meet the 10 hottest European startup hubs & celebrate winners

2016-02-03

On February 24th, OpenAxel celebrates its 9 winners and present the Top 10 hottest European startup hubs you need to know all about.
Program:

10.00-13.00: Networking with startups @booths 
13.00-14.00: Registration
14.00-14.10: Welcome by OpenAxel 
14.10-15.20: European startup hub pitchesfind out how these buzzing hubs can help your startup accelerate, enter new markets, find new investors and much more: 

Barcelona – Scott Mackin, Barcinno
Berlin – Christoph Sollich, Startup consultant
Amsterdam – TBD, StartupAmsterdam
Denmark – Rasmus Bjerngaard, #CPHFTW
London – TBD
Paris – TBD
Budapest – Csongor Bias, Head of Tech Incubation at Design Terminal
Madrid – Carmen Bermejo, Spanish Startup Association
Stockholm – Tomas Bennich, SUP46
Milano – Chiara Brughera, Talentgarden

15.20-15.35: LIVE Interview with MyTwinPlace – an OpenAxel alumni and a home swap platform for travelling entrepreneurs
15.35-15.45: OpenAxel Winner Announcement & Celebration – meet these cool winners of the OpenAxel contest:

Brain+ – Digital training platform where user is taken on a brain training journey  
Diabetes Lab – Personalized medical advice, implemented in an easy-to-use mobile app, cloud software or embedded into existing devices.
Momit – An intelligent device that connects heating boiler to the internet
Nnergix – A forecasting platform for the renewable energy industry and electrical markets using big data generated by multiple sources.
OJOO – An open platform to digitalize, publish and distribute location-based experiences with a fully customizable and intuitive toolbox
RemoteEye – A technical service tool that works in smart devices
STAY – A platform which allows guests to manage all aspects of their stay at a hotel with their mobile phone
Viomedo – Connects patients with clinical trial opportunities thereby accelerating the process of developing better therapies.
Xetal – An innovative indoor people localization technology

15.45-16.30: Networking with winners and startup hub experts

Join us at the OpenAxel/Telefonica OpenFuture booth4YFN conferenceFira Montjuic Barcelona on the 24th of February from 10:00-16:00. See the full program here.

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Templafy Attracts More Capital and Tech Giants

2015-10-27

Accelerace alumni Templafy, a branding and compliance solution for enterprise documents, has raised millions more in funding and secured a strategic partnership with Microsoft. The investment comes from both new and existing investors and brings the experienced entrepreneur, Preben Damgaard, onto the Board.

Templafy was founded in 2014 as a spinoff from the successful template management company, SkabelonDesign, as a response to the cloud-first business environment. It now counts 25 staff and is on course for solving visual and legal anarchy in documents for enterprises globally, helping to ensure compliance in the two billion business documents created by employees worldwide every day.

Templafy has focused its sights on the enterprise segment, with a client list that includes DSB, SEB and Nets, and 80K+ users now on the platform. Securing top tech talent is part of the company’s strategy with Preben Damgaard, whose former company Navision was acquired by Microsoft in 2002 – the largest acquisition ever made by Microsoft at the time – now joining the fold in this latest investment.

The links with Microsoft, as well as Templafy’s integration with the Office suite, has resulted in a strategic partnership with the tech giant. “More and more companies are choosing to move their software to the cloud. Templafy have chosen to build their solution in a way that fully integrates with the Office 365 platform, which means that they really remove a barrier to cloud adoption for all our customers, gradually ensuring our cloud services are adopted by the users. Cooperation with Templafy was therefore obvious,” said Aaren Ekelund, Head of Division, Microsoft Office.

Strong forces

The new investment comes from SEED Capital, Sunstone Capital and private investors, Jesper Theill Eriksen and Preben Damgaard. The capital raise comes in the wake of robust economic growth and the prospect of an almost untouched global market with more than 1bn enterprise users.

“Templafy has created a solution that’s extremely scalable and they have a vast market in view. Customers are really happy with the solution and the strategy works. The high degree of talent the company has managed to attract matches its high potential,” said General Partner of SEED Capital, Lars Andersen, also a member of Templafy’s Board.

The latest funding will accelerate Templafy’s reach internationally, as will the addition of Preben Damgaard to the Board. Damgaard was one of the driving forces behind the sale of uber successful startup Endomondo earlier this year, and had a 22% stake in the company Secunia, which was sold to Flexera Software in September.

“The investment allows us to power up our strategy execution, and the addition of Jesper Theill Eriksen and Preben Damgaard obviously brings tremendous value. They are both very experienced in the enterprise segment. Preben has a number of successful companies behind him, Navision included, that resemble the Templafy solution, both in market approach and in their relation to Microsoft. It’s therefore extremely valuable for us to have Preben join the Board,” said Templafy CEO, Christian Lund.

“Templafy closes a gap in the market and their product covers a universal need across geographies and industries. They solve a real problem recognised by most businesses. I chose to become involved in Templafy because the founders and shareholders are very experienced and because the technology supports a basic trend and combines dynamically scalable IT services with settlement of software as a service,” said Preben Damgaard.

Templafy raised its first investment in the summer of 2014, with approximately $2.5 million contributed by SEED Capital and Sunstone Capital.

About Templafy

Templafy is an enterprise branding and compliance tool. It simplifies how companies create, manage and share document templates and personalizes them for every employee. The solution ensures visual and legal consistency and delivers major efficiency gains for companies as well as individual users. Templafy was launched in 2013 as a spinoff from SkabelonDesign A/S, which has supplied template solutions to more than 700 companies in the enterprise segment worldwide since 2004.

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New startup competition for entrepreneurs within Sound and Home Integration

2015-10-26

Europe’s most ambitious startup competition Next Step Challenge is growing. The startup competition has added a new track in collaboration with Bang & Olufsen a/s located in Struer/Holstebro (North Jutland). The Færch Foundation (Færchfonden) and Bang & Olufsen a/s have partnered up with Next Step Challenge in the Science Park Nupark located in Holstebro / Struer. It is the first time for Next Step Challenge to start another track of the competition.

Startups with good ideas in the field of sound and home integration are invited to develop and test their products and market knowledge in collaboration with professionals from (among others) Bang & Olufsen a / s. The competition’s application deadline is December 1st, 2015.

But why do Færchfonden and Bang & Olufsen a / s choose to engage in the Next Step Challenge competition? Færchfonden is  a partner to support new activities in the area of Struer / Holstebro and to attract new businesses and jobs.

“Færchfonden is interested in supporting initiatives that contribute to the development of entrepreneurship and strengthen the business environment in Western Jutland. That is exactly the idea behind Next Step Challenge and we expect that the project in the long run will create growth and jobs in the area “says Martin Vang Hansen, director of Færchfonden.

Christian Iversen, Vice President of Bang & Olufsen a / s acknowledges: “Digitialization offers great opportunities for a company like ours and opens up for new business models and partnerships. We have strong development skills here that we wish to build  upon and we look forward to being inspired by the talents from around the world. This may in turn help to further boost innovation in the local area. ”

Nupark in Holstebro will get an international inspiration boost when the doors open for the coming finalists in sound and home integration on  April 1st 2016. This is the date when the  finalist companies will move to Struer/Holstebro, and just like in Esbjerg, become part of a buzzling development environment.

Initially there will be 5 to 7 companies in Holstebro / Struer.

Next Step Challenge – close collaboration is vital

Europe’s most ambitious entrepreneurship competition has already been running for two years in Esbjerg with a focus on smart energy and digitalization. Accelerace provides business development to the companies participating in the Next Step Challenge competition, in cooperation with SE’s innovation department, SE Next Step and Nupark.

The experience of the first two rounds are the basis for the new initiative in Nupark with Bang & Olufsen a / s, and it is especially the location close to a big firm that provides finalist companies with unique opportunities.
The openness at SE and now also at Bang & Olufsen a / s is crucial and the established business network that the hosts can provide is equally as important.

“The competition has got great value and it is clearly the result of the direct integration into these large companies that  raises the level  compared to other competitions. It also enables to increase the speed of development for the startups participating in Next Step Challenge. The synergy that occurs when innovative talents and a professional company collaborate, creates new inspiration and provides value for both parts, “says Lisbeth Valther, Managing Director at SE NextStep.

New Track reschedule – also in Esbjerg

The program for Next Step Challenge in Esbjerg has been postponed in order to give synergy, inspiration and network exchange for the startups enrolled in the two competition tracks in Holstebro and Esbjerg. Thus the two programs will start their first sprint on February 1st and startups will relocate to Holstebro and Esbjerg on April 1rst 2016th.

Accelerace´s CEO Peter Torstensen elaborates: “We build  upon this successful concept from the first two rounds and look forward to working with talents in the field of sound and home integration in collaboration with Bang & Olufsen a / s. We will continue providing high quality and top international entrepreneurial talents and we hope that we can help strengthen the valuable ecosystem around soundo and home integration in North Jutland.”

Facts about Next Step Challenge (NSC)
– The Innovation House, SE Energy and Digitalization and the accelerator program Accelerace are behind the initiative Next Step Challenge (NSC).
– Next Step Challenge program consists of– on top of a two-month online course – a six months period of intensive business development in Esbjerg and now Holstebro that will test and ripen startups ideas. The program ends with a final ceremony, where the winner of the programs will be announced.
– Application to the NSC Holstebro starts now and ends on the December 1rst 2015.

Visit http://www.nextstepchallenge.com to learn more about the competition and read the description of the new track on Audio and Home Integration.

For further information:
• Christian Iversen – VP People, Strategy & Organizational enablement at Bang & Olufsen a / s, CIV@Bang-Olufsen.dk, 29 22 89 04
• Martin Vang Hansen – Director, Færchfonden, faerchfonden@faerchfonden.dk, 96 10 60 30
• Peter Torstensen – CEO, Accelerace, pto@accelerace.dk, 39 17 99 93
• Lisbeth Valther – Managing Director, SE Next Step, lisval@se.dk, 2030 8452

Bang & Olufsen a/s:
Bang & Olufsen a / s produces a wide range of unique television and music systems, loudspeakers and
multimedia products that combine innovative technologies with an elegant design.
www.bang-olufsen.com

Færchfonden:
Færchfonden (The Færch Foundation) supports entrepreneurship, growth and local attractiveness in West Jutland through the development of entrepreneurship, business, culture, etc.
Among other things, Færchfonden has invested in Nupark Innovation A / S, creating new businesses and jobs in the North West Jutland.
www.faerchfonden.dk

Nupark:
Nupark is a 12,000 sqm development park with about 100 companies.
Nupark offers entrepreneurial and business services.
www.nupark.dk/

Accelerace:
Accelerace is Scandinavia’s leading accelerator program working with the most promising Danish and international entrepreneurs and growth companies.
www.accelerace.dk

SE Next Step:
SE NextStep is SE’s center for knowledge and innovation with focus on digitalization, data and energy. The Innovation house is the setting for the Next Step Challenge in Esbjerg, and opens its doors directly into the SE group for the contest participants.
www.nextstepcity.com
www.se.dk

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Bownty raises 25 million DKK (over 3 million euro) in series A funding

2015-10-21

Accelerace alumni Bownty, a platform that collects the best deals in more than 1000 cities in Europe, has raised 25 million DKK (over 3 million euro) in series A funding. The new investment deal is the third one in the past four years, and it promises to accelerate company’s growth according to Bownty’s CEO Steffen Frølund, shared in interview with BusinessDK.

The funds will primarily be used for marketing, so that Bownty can increase the number of customers. The plan is to use company’s current channels but such alternatives as acquisitions of smaller-scale competitors in Europe or expansion to new markets, such as the US, are certainly not excluded. The competition in both Europe and America is something to be explored, as similar to Bownty service in the domestic market Dagensbedste has recently failed for bankruptcy while the US market is dominated Groupon, known as one of the fastest growing companies in terms of valuation.

Current funding round includes Bownty’s current investors as well as Pia Vemmelund, managing director at Momondo, and Howzat Partners, a venture capital fund that among other things previously helped to build guide pages such as Trivago and Cheapflights.

Bownty’s previous funding came from venture fund SEED Capital in 2012 and acceleratorforløb in 2013. Since then Bownty has been growing steadily, and today the company has a count of nearly 40 employees of 15 different nationalities. Last summer Bownty acquired its main competitor Yunait. As of 2015 there are 2.2 million Bownty users, who can take advantage of offers from more than 100 dealer services in eight European countries. In terms of sales, the company itself claims to make about 135 million DKK annually, which is rather impressive for a company that was established in 2011.

“With the history, of investors we’ve gotten, I see no obstacle that we can be at least as successful as Momondo and Trivago. And it is our overall objective,” says Frølund.

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OpenAxel announces its second european startup contest

2015-09-14

Accelerace’s partner project OPENAXEL launches its second call to detect the best European entrepreneurial talent and offers a high potential boot camp in Silicon Valley. If you believe you are someone in the tech scene and can be eligible as one of the TOP30 European start-ups be sure to apply.

Following the success of the first contest, OPENAXEL launches its second call to detect the best digital European entrepreneurial talent.  Accelerators and corporate start-up programmes are again looking for the most promising European startups.

This second OpenAxel contest will be open until October 30 2015.

Among other contributions, winners will receive a one-week Business Boot Camp in  Silicon Valley, world class mentoring, coaching by top rated CEOs, perks and mentoring by leading technology corporations, introductions to digital corporations and investors and privileged visibility in the main entrepreneurial events in Europe.

Since 2013 OpenAxel has been working to open the digital entrepreneurial ecosystem in Europe by fostering cooperation between stakeholders of the acceleration and the ICT industries.

OpenAxel’s recently upgraded website provides an interactive map demonstrating acceleration services offered within Europe as well as information on start-ups and digital corporations within the network. See http://www.openaxel.com/.

The map provides information on accelerators, corporate and ICT national trade associations in Europe. This can be used to help ICT start-ups develop and accelerate their businesses through cross border collaboration at European level.

For more information about OPENAXEL please visit http://www.openaxel.com or email info@openaxel.com

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Accelerace alumni iPosen acquired by Dansk Supermarked

2015-09-04

Accelerace alumni iPosen.dk just got acquired by the largest Danish retail business, Dansk Supermarked. iPosen.dk joined Accelerace in 2014 for our 11th batch of the accelerator program and later received an investment through Nupark Accelerace Invest to grow and develop their e-supermarket platform.

iPosen.dk specializes in delivering groceries to e.g. schools, day care centers and elderly people facilitated by governmental programs. iPosen.dk is already working with the largest Danish municipalities such as Copenhagen and Århus municipality.

Dansk Supermarked estimates a market value at about 3-4 billion kroner for services toward the public sector and believes that digitalization and e-commerce holds a massive potential to their retail business. The acquisition of iPosen.dk makes Dansk Supermarket online distributor of groceries to several Danish municipalities with the ambition to change a market characterized by being led by a few minor companies and a lack of transparency in pricing.

In Accelerace we are really happy to see what iPosen.dk have achieved! Congrats to Moonis Kamil and the rest of the team!

Read the full article in Børsen today: http://borsen.dk/nyhed…/avisen/artikel/…/120375/artikel.html

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Europe’s largest startup competition opens for applications

2015-08-20

Next Step Challenge has opened for the next wave of global startup talents to apply. Once again the competition and accelerator program will have Europe’s largest startup prize of EUR 250,000 for the winning startup. The application deadline is September 30, 2015 at 24.00 CET.

Next Step Challenge have opened for the application process the third batch of their startup competition and accelerator program based in Denmark, which will give further 12 businesses the chance to shape the next generation of energy and digital products and services.

The startup competition, powered by the utility company SE, the Region of Southern Denmark and Scandinavia’s leading accelerator, Accelerace, is a 6-month program where startups will be guided through the process of growing and developing their business.

Each startup will have access to a state-of-the-art digital infrastructure & smart grid, a wide business and investor network in Denmark and Europe, +200 hours of business consulting, international mentoring, a Founder’s pack worth more than €50,000 and free office space & housing – and the largest startup prize in Europe.

The program kicks off in December and in February the startups will relocate to the incubator Next Step City in Esbjerg, Denmark. The program will culminate in a grand award show in June 2016 where the 1st prize of €250,000 will be presented to the winning startup.

Next Step Challenge was established in 2013 and have a startup survival rate of 100% and 88% of the participating companies has raised investments with an average of EUR 1M. The previous winners have been Serbian Teleskin in 2014 for their advanced mobile app for early detection of skin cancer and melanoma and the Silicon Valley startup TableGrabber in 2015 for their disruptive middle-layer technology for restaurants.

The application deadline for the next round of Next Step Challenge is September 30, 2015 at 24.00 CET.

Read more on www.nextstepchallenge.com

Last year’s winner TableGrabber on stage at the Next Step Challenge award show

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ChurchDesk raises USD 2 mio. to help churches go digital

2015-08-20

ChurchDesk is a cloud-based church management platform with an integrated set of tools that take care of ecclesiastical admin, increase transparency and improve information flow between staff, volunteers and the community. Christian Steffensen founded the company in 2010, having seen how his mother struggled to run her church in Denmark.

“The challenges that clergy face are two-fold – they have dwindling congregations because they lack CRM or marketing tools and they’re poorly managed,” comments Christian Steffensen, CEO at ChurchDesk. “My mother is 62, she’s been a pastor all her life and is a theologian. She’s hardly going to reinvent the way her industry operates but she does have an iPhone and an iPad.”

ChurchDesk’s tools include a task management dashboard, event planning, messaging via email and SMS, file-sharing and a user directory as well as a mobile app available on iOS and Android. It also features a mobile friendly CMS website that can be customized using templates, pulls events automatically from the calendar and supports newsletter campaigns and simplecampaigns and event sign up.

“The Church of England has twenty thousand churches and an enormous amount of money but it’s terrible at engaging its audience,” continues Steffensen. “Having focused on creating a church management system, we’re now building it out so churchgoers can use it to connect with their pastors as well as other churchgoers.”

Steffensen now has over a thousand users churches across Denmark,  and Germany and the United Kingdom as well as Klaus Nyengaard, previously chief executive of Just Eat, serving as chairman. Mangrove Capital Partners, an early backer of Skype and Wix.com, led the investment while Nyengaard also joined the round having previously provided seed capital together with Accelerace .

“This really is an intriguing business. It’s already the dominant provider of church management systems and will shortly have an incredible network effect amongst both church workers and attendees,” comments Michael Jackson, partner at Mangrove Capital Partners. “The scope for growth here is phenomenal – it’s a $370bn market globally and has simply been overlooked.”

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Coinify Acquires Competing Bitcoin Payments Processor Coinzone

2015-08-13

Coinify has acquired competing Europe-based payments processor Coinzone as part of an undisclosed deal announced today

With the move, the Denmark-based company has expanded its merchant base to an estimated 10,000 actively monthly customers, up from 8,000 before the acquisition. Further, it has grown its employee base to 17, with the addition of Coinzone‘s sales staff.

Coinify CFO Christian Visti Larsen indicated that the purchase comes as his firm is seeking to shift its focus from acquiring individual merchants to payment service providers (PSPs). He explained Coinify is seeking to replicate a model invoked by its US peer Bitnet, in that it will seek to partner with larger entities that provide payments support to thousands of online merchants.

Visti Larsen told CoinDesk:

“More merchants today do business with a PSP and would rather have multiple payment options through a PSP. Most of Coinzone’s partners were asking for this service, so it seemed like a perfect match.”

Visti Larsen also commented on the success of this model in the US, where bitcoin payments are already supported by PSPs such as CardinalCommerce, PayPal and Stripe. He suggested it was time for the European market to “step up” its performance and said Coinify is working on as many as eight deals with regional PSPs.

Outgoing Coinzone CEO Manuel Heilmann told CoinDesk his firm’s existing management staff will remain at the company for a “transition period”, though no executives will join Coinify in full-time roles. Heilmann said he is seeking to return to the e-commerce industry, but will continue to advocate for the technology.

Founded in 2014, Coinzone is an Amsterdam-based payment processor that had garnered most of its traction in eastern Europe.

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RezGuru by TableGrabber wins €250,000 in Europe’s largest startup competition

2015-08-12

RezGuru by TableGrabber has won €250,000 in the international Next Step Challenge accelerator program and startup competition. The startup company was awarded 1st prize for their disruptive middle-layer technology for restaurants.

The Next Step Challenge received more than 300 applications from 75 countries where nine startups within next-generation energy and digital products and services were selected for 6-month of business acceleration. The competition recently culminated in a grand award show where TableGrabber, founded in Silicon Valley in 2014, was awarded with the largest entrepreneurship prize in Europe of €250,000 for their new platform called RezGuru, which allows restaurants to centrally manage their capacity to increase their utilization and maximize their revenue potential.

“We are extremely happy to win this award in a fierce competition with many talented companies. We’ve developed our company rapidly throughout the program, that has been a big step for us. It’s really flattering to be the winner of the 1st prize,” says Pawan Marwaha, Co-Founder of TableGrabber, and continues: “Going forward we will focus on rapid growth. Our platform is up and running and we have good early traction. So our focus is on accelerating our sales growth. The 1st prize of €250,000 will add fuel to our growth trajectory.”

According to TableGrabber, restaurants are years behind in technology and RezGuru give them a consolidated layer to manage all their technology needs. Similar to airlines and hotels, restaurants can now distribute their tables and food-orders across all channels with different marketing and revenue management strategies to help them optimize their capacity and maximize their revenue potential

With a Master in Revenue Management from the Cornell Hotel School and Fellow from MIT, the founders have a good mix of industry and technology background to solve this pain-point.

Europe’s largest startup prize
The Next Step Challenge is based on a partnership between the Danish accelerator program Accelerace, the utility company SE, the Region of Southern Denmark and Business Development Esbjerg with the intention to provide the nine startups with mentoring, training, and access to expertise. The startups were also able to develop and test their technologies on 261,000 households in the Region of Southern Denmark, and have the opportunity for potential investment and partnering opportunities.

The nine companies were all judged by their business opportunities, team, development through the program, growth potential and how they were going to use the prize money.

Søren Lottrup, Partner in Accelerace, says: “The competition this year has been very tough, since the quality of the startups have been very high. TableGrabber, however stood out above the rest due to their disruptive technology. Their product is digitalizing and thereby revolutionizing an extremely competitive industry, allowing their customers to maximize their revenue potential. Throughout the program, TableGrabber worked hard and achieved great results in regards to developing their technology and attracting new clients. Lastly, the team members are characterized by having a profound technology and industry expertise, which will help the company to obtain future success in a global market.”

Next Step Challenge is open for applications for the next round of the program. The deadline to apply is September 30, 2015.

Read more about the Next Step Challenge here: http://nextstepchallenge.com

Facts about Next Step Challenge:

  • Established in 2013
  • 17 startups have participated so far
  • Round 2 recieved +300 applications from 75 different countries
  • Startup survival rate: 100%
  • Startups who have raised investments = 88 %
  • Winners: TableGrabber (2015) & Teleskin (2014)

Participating companies 2015:
Unified Intents (Sweden), Dojo Interactive (USA / Denmark), iNovar (Great Britain), TableGrabber (USA / Denmark / India), Nwave Technologies (Great Britain), Linc (Denmark / Great Britain), Admetsys (USA), Braci (Great Britain) and ParkTag (Germany).

About TableGrabber
TableGrabber (founded in 2014) is a Silicon Valley and Denmark based startup that provides restaurants with software that allows the restaurants to forecast their demand and allow them to change their prices dynamically to increase their utilization and maximize their revenue potential. Restaurants have perishable inventory, if they don’t sell a table it’s a lost opportunity for them. Yet, unlike airlines and hotels, restaurants don’t use revenue management strategies to optimize their utilization and maximize their revenue potential. Read more on www.tablegrabber.com & www.rezguru.com

About Next Step Challenge
The Next Step Challenge is the most ambitious entrepreneur prize and accelerator program in Europe. This startup competition supports promising startups through a 6-month program, which concludes in an award show where €250.000 is granted to the winning startup. The program has an international focus and is for companies within next-generation energy and digital products and services. The Next Step Challenge is based on an initiative by Accelerace, SE, The Region of Southern Denmark and Esbjerg Business Development with the objective to utilize the advanced digital infrastructure in the region of Southern Denmark. Read more about the Next Step Challenge on: www.nextstepchallenge.com, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NextStepChallenge, Twitter: https://twitter.com/NSCDK or by e-mail: info@accelerace.dk

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Accelerace CEO listed among Top 100 accelerator leaders

2015-08-06

Accelerators are the programs that propel many startups to success using a combination of mentoring, experience and capital; who are the 100 most influential leaders in this field?

To have made the list, these leaders and their accelerators must have a stellar track record in the following areas:

fundraising,

1) Graduate valuation: The equity valuation and venture funding of alumni companies is an important factor when judging accelerators as it allows the entrepreneur to get an accurate picture of a program’s success rate.

2) Learning environment: For first-time entrepreneurs, knowledge is the single biggest currency. The top accelerators should be able to provide startups with the right contacts, knowledge pool and mentorship scheme.

3) Exits: How have accelerators’ companies exited? Acquisitions, mergers, IPOs, shut-downs; an accelerator must be transparent about its track record in order to prove its legitimacy in this space.

4) Startup satisfaction: Qualitative reviews are just as important as the figures. A startup must be able to feel at ease with its mentors and overall experience in order to facilitate trust and implement success.

It takes time, patience, responsibility and vision to continually seek out the next tech startup stars and allow them to develop in a sustainable manner.

Which is why these 100 leaders deserve recognition.

They have the exciting, and critical, task of meeting, encouraging and supporting the companies driving tech’s next leap forward.

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Startup Insights: Umbed Pharmaceuticals

2015-06-24

Our next participant in the Startup Insights campaign is the Life-Sciences company Umbed Pharmaceuticals. They want to revolutionize the way anticancer and peptide drugs are infused going from the ineffective intravenous infusion to oral nanomedicine products. With a great team and a strong board there are well on their way.

Elevator Pitch:
A number of anticancer drugs are dosed by intravenous (IV) infusion due to the poor solubility and bioavailability upon oral administration of these drugs. Additionally, a similar problem exists for systemic and local administration of peptide drugs. IV administration is expensive and the low dosing interval leads to systemic side effects due to the need for high dosing. Oral reformulation can overcome these problems and pave the way for improved cancer and peptide therapies.

With an expanding global market of $88bill. and a growth rate of 12.3%, the anti-cancer market segment comprises more than 80% in this market. Umbed pharmaceuticals will develop new drug products by reformulation of IV anticancer drugs and peptide drugs to oral nanomedicine products. This offers significant increase in patient compliance and comfort, drastically reducing the administration costs and reduces additional risk related to IV dosing.
Umbed has developed and tested a production platform, which makes use of existing stand alone manufacturing technology, thereby reducing development time and costs.

Product description:
The Umbed technology platform provides a one-step high throughput production of nano-embedded microparticles intended for nanomedicine products to enhance the oral bioavailability of small molecule and peptide drugs. Unlike competing nanoparticle preparation processes, Umbed’s technology produces a powder-based end-product ready for downstream processing into the final dosage form. Our powder-based nano-embedded microparticles allow for sterile production, a versatile range of nanomedicine dosage forms, increased product stability and superior product reproducibility.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?
We applied for the Accelerace program to get help with business strategy and business development as we do not have any prior experience with business and product development.  The Accelerace program has been helpful for us in defining a viable business model and in defining important operational goals as well as helping connect with the right people.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?
The company started as one of several pharmaceutical related startup ideas we were working on at the time beside our main research project. It came to our minds that many of the current methods for preparing drug-loaded nanoparticles are inefficient and do not allow easy scale-up for commercial scale manufacturing. We figured that our idea would therefore be useful for the industry and for development of new nanomedicine products. The next day we assembled a test set up of the technology and as it worked out very well so we decided to file a patent application.

Other big news about your company?
We have received the Novo Exploratory Pre-seed grant and are currently working on obtaining more funding.

Fun fact / information about your company:
Our company name originates from Micro(µ)embed Pharmaceuticals but we are in fact working on a technology for nanoparticles

Founders:  Jorrit Water,  Adam Bohr

Employees: 2 (the founders)

Headquarters:  Copenhagen

Year Founded:  2015

 

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Former Accelerace startup Trustpilot raises $73.5 million

2015-05-28

Unlike existing reviews sites that are popular in the U.S., such as TripAdvisor or Yelp, Trustpilot focuses on getting people to write about their recent customer experiences with online merchants and other companies they deal with primarily online, rather than reviewing restaurants, hotels and airlines or individual products.

Virtruvian Partners led the Series D round, joined by Trustpilot’s earlier backers, DFJ Esprit, Index Ventures, Northzone and SEED Capital Denmark. In total, Trustpilot has raised $118 million in venture funding to date.

The company’s founder and Chief Executive Peter Holten Mühlmann said Trustpilot has already published 13 million reviews about more than 100,000 brands. It generates revenue when merchants subscribe to use Trustpilot’s software-as-a-service to solicit reviews from recent customers, and to gain business insights from reviews in aggregate.

To make sure its reviews are credible–neither falsely flattering nor tearing down a particular company–Trustpilot uses a blend of technology and people to flag and eliminate possible phonies.

It also uses “sentiment analysis” to help companies quickly pinpoint areas for improvement and strengths they can trumpet in marketing or advertising campaigns.

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Accelerace vinder pris for bedste professionelle investor

2015-05-22

Ved prisoverrækkelsen til Nordic Startup Awards den 20. maj modtog Accelerace Invest prisen som årets Bedste Investor foran nominerede som SEED Capital, Klaus Nyengaard, Northcap og Sunstone.

Juryen i Nordic Startup Awards begrunder udvælgelsen med at:
”Accelerace har demonstreret en stærk investeringsforståelse over det seneste år ved bl.a. at have investeret tidligt i markante startups og realiseret deres potentiale.  Accelerace har været i stand til at navigere i et marked i kontant forandring med stor viden og succes og samtidig formået at etablere tætte relationer til de teams de har investeret i. ”

Jesper Knudsen, partner i Accelerace kommenterer:
”Vi er meget glade og stolte over at have opnået titlen som bedste investor. Det bekræfter os i, at det vi gør, er rigtigt og at vores fremgangsmåde er god. Vi lægger meget vægt på ikke blot at være passive investorer, der dukker op til bestyrelsesmøderne – derfor arbejder vi dedikeret med virksomhederne både før og efter vi har investeret i dem. Der er en del af vores kerneværdier og strategi.”

Accelerace Invest blev for få uger siden desuden kåret blandt Top 10 af Europas mest aktive investorer i en stor europæisk rapport udarbejdet af Fundacity.

Fakta om Accelerace Invest:
• Accelerace Invest har været aktiv seed investor siden 2007 og fokuserer særligt på teknologi, energi og velfærdsteknologi.
• Accelerace Invest har i alt foretaget 73 investeringer.
• Alle investeringer er i virksomheder, der har været igennem et Accelerace-forløb.
• Accelerace Invest har i 2014-2015 investeret i flere lovende startup-virksomheder, bl.a. Teleskin, ChurchDesk, Graduateland, Coinify, Yaneeda, TeamAuction (nu Odendo) m.fl.
• Accelerace Invest har også investeret i Bownty (som vandt publikumsprisen til Nordic Startup Awards 2015).
• Overlevelsesraten blandt startups i acceleratorprogrammet er 92% (sammenlignet med 50% for iværksættere generelt).
• 61% af de virksomheder Accelerace arbejder med har rejst penge under eller lige efter et Accelerace-forløb.

Pressekontakt
• Accelerace CEO, Peter Torstensen på 39 17 99 93
eller pto@accelerace.dk
• Partner, business accelerator og investor, Jesper Knudsen
på 21 79 17 63 eller jkn@accelerace.dk

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Startup Insights: CorporateHealth

2015-05-13

Continuing our Startup Insights campaign we have one of our Life-Sciences companies; CorporateHealth!
CorporateHealth is founded in 2010, and is currently spread over offices in New York, Hamburg and Odense – quiet cool!
CorporateHealth uses standardized processes, cloud-platforms, big data, and the right service personnel to create the right model for disruptive technological innovation that addresses medical prevention.

Elevator Pitch:

CorporateHealth creates medical prevention services models that can scale.

Innovative medical technology often fails to scale as the services to deliver it don’t match its value proposition. CorporateHealth uses standardized processes, cloud-platforms, Big Data, and the right service personnel to create the right model for disruptive technological innovation that addresses medical prevention.

CorporateHealth’ CHECKUP offering is the first service in Denmark that uses home nurses, central diagnostic, and sophisticated IT to deliver video-capsule-based screening of the colon to test thousands of people at risk of colorectal cancer.

Product/Service description:

General: CHECKUP Home-delivered colon capsule endoscopy (HD-CCE) is an end-to-end service using a smart video capsule from Covidien – PillCam Colon 2 – to screen patients for colorectal cancer in the convenience of their home or similarly practical location.

First specific service: “CHECKUP HD-CCE True-Positive” is an end-to-end service that uses HD-CCE to find those patients with a positive iFOBT result (from a rather unspecific test by participating in the Danish colorectal cancer screening program) that are truly positive. Only those will be send to the hospital for colonoscopy while all the false-positives will feel relieved.

How it works:

A patient with a positive iFOBT will be offered HD-CCE when their appointment for a colonoscopy is being made with the hospital. After receiving detailed information about the procedure and how to prepare they will have to make sure their colon is clean. Our nurses (via phone calls and emails) and our technology platform (via sundhed.dk automated workflow and SMS alerts) will help them and make sure they are ready for the procedure. When they are, the alert our nurse who will visit the patient e.g. at their home and provide the video capsule and help putting on the belt and reader that capsures the images in real-time. After making sure it moved successfully through the stomach into the colon (which takes some 20min), the patient can continue his/her day doing everything as usual – but not sleep. After a couple of hours (4-8) the capsule will dispose via the toilet and the patient returns the belt&reader.

Our central diagnostic center will then analyze the video and flag any significant findings so that the prescribing doctor can decide on what to do next: Clear the patient, ask him/her to an immediate colonoscopy or advise on a return visit after the right period of time.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

The Accelerace team has a unique mix of experts that are deeply embedded into the Danish healthcare system, that are experienced in working with start-ups and that have access to funding opportunities. Getting to work with these people not just in independent meetings, but as part of a structured program, makes Accelerace an excellent partner.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

Cornelius Glismann started CorporateHealth as a purely Germany focused endeavor to provide personal medical checkup services to enterprise managers and executives. In a first pivot we tried to include capsule screening by addressing private patients into the general checkup programs. When Hagen Wenzek and Cornelius explored the business opportunities behind the different models we had the idea to take the capsule screening idea to the next level, abandon the traditional approach that found little interest and pursue the technology-driven full-service model that doesn’t rely on the incumbent stakeholders in the slow-moving healthcare system.

The second angle is much more personal: Hagen’s mother had colorectal cancer at the same age that he was when I caught up again with Cornelius (2 years ago / 2013) and was due for a colonoscopy. Having learned about the risks of a colonoscopy and the (ridiculous) prices charged for them especially in the US where he lives (up to $8,500!), and then seeing the simple approach to screen for cancer with a video capsule meant something had to be done about it.

Fun fact about your company:

Cornelius lives in Hamburg, Hagen in New York and the company’s headquarters are now in Odense. Making the best out of an international set-up over multiple time zones is exciting in itself.

Founder(s):

Dr. Cornelius Glismann & Dr. Hagen Wenzek

Employees:

Nurses: Pernille Mahnfeldt, Jane Holt, Vibeke Baatrup.

Pre-reading nurses in Hamburg: Kerstin Einsiedler & Claudia Werner

Collaborating Chief Medial Officer: Eberhard Bart, MD.

Assisting Doctor: Ursular Valentiner, MD. Hamburg

Headquarters: Forskerparken 10A, Odense.

Year Founded: 2010 (original CorporateHealth), 2015 CorporateHealth International ApS

Website: Link

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Startup Insights: Washa

2015-05-06

Meet our next participant in the 13th round of Accelerace: Washa. Just 1 year ago Karim started Washa with his two friends Max (25) and Jannick (23). Their idea was to start an online laundry and dry-cleaning service that picks up your clothes and drop them off clean at your address within 48 hours. Meet the passionate startup guys here!

Company name: Washa

Elevator Pitch:

Washa is an online laundry and dry-cleaning service that picks up your clothes and drop them off clean at your address within 48 hours. The service is aimed for people who doesn’t have time to do their laundry or doesn’t have any laundry facilities nearby, or simply doesn’t want to do their own laundry. Washa is a new and revolutionary way of doing your laundry and our highest priority is to provide the best service while giving you more spare time and a life without dirty clothes.

Product/Service description:

Visit our website to order a laundry hero to pick up your clothes. Our laundry hero will pick up your clothes at the exact time and place you wish. After our laundry hero has picked up your clothes, he brings them to our modern and swan labeled laundry facilities where the magic happens. Within 48 hours, our laundry hero will drop off your clothes clean and fragrant at your doorstep.

How it works:

  1. Place an order at our website
  2. Prepare your dirty clothes for our laundry-hero
  3. Our laundry-hero brings your clothes to our laundry facilities
  4. Within 48 hours from pick-up, the laundry-hero will drop off your clothes clean at your address

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

Mainly because we needed some professional guidance and expertise to scale, and then we saw Accelerace as an option to get some capital increase.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

We were all tired of spending way too much time in the laundry room, and started wondering if there was a service that did your laundry and dry-cleaning. We checked the market but didn’t find anything that did what we needed help for and so we took action!

Other big news about your company?

We are nominated for two prizes, Nordic Startup Awards and E-Handelsprisen, which will be awarded respectively the 20’th and 21’st of May.

Fun fact / information about your company:

After we went online in February 2014 we started doing the laundry in Jannick’s apartment before we had a cooperation with a laundry and dry-cleaning shop. The first drycleaners we talked to didn’t have faith in our project and said that we didn’t have a case, but as orders kept coming in they had to change their minds J

Founder(s):

Karim Ben M’Barek
Max B. Stripp
Jannick Christensen

Employees: 4

Headquarters: Kirstinehøj 3, 2770 Kastrup

Year Founded: 2014

Website: www.Washa.dk

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link


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Startup Insights: WakeupData

2015-04-29

Coming up on our Startup Insights campaign, we have WakeupData! These guys are committed to creating an online data integration platform that enables simple and easy connection, filtering, enrichment and exporting of any data or feed source. In other words – these guys are good with data-processing! Read how it all started last year in this week’s Startup Insights below!

Elevator Pitch:

WakeupData is an online data integration platform that enables simple and easy connection, filtering, enrichment and exporting of any data or feed source. It is cloud based, so that you can enjoy a continuous, safe and secure service – setting our clients free of former high cost custom development.

Product/Service description:

It offers a user-friendly interface to online stores for transferring their correct and up-to-date data to countless platforms for maintaining inventories, transferring invoices, using 3rd party tools and marketing purposes.

How it works:

WakeupData consists of cleverly designed modules that are aimed to understanding your data – from product listings to financial tables. We map your data to store in a universal format, and transform it to countless export options – allowing you to deliver your up-to-date data to anywhere and anytime you like. This approach saves you weeks of development cost, and of course time.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

We firmly believed that Accelerace would provide us with the very boost we needed to be stronger and more visible as a startup. Having an Accelerator in our team allows us to be more efficient, agile and goal-oriented towards proving our scalability and re-prioritizing for our potential to grow.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

Product data integration – especially with platforms such as Google, Amazon or Ebay – has been a practical aspect that Dennis and Web2Media have been working on for the past few years. Knowing the increasing need for new integration tools, in 2014, they have decided to create WakeupData – an amazing software. And, the actual starting point was a client’s integration pain that others had already given up on, indicating they could fill a huge gap in the current market.

Other big news about your company? (Optional)

WakeupData keeps growing steadily with monthly additions to its clientele, and new brand and sales managers will be joining our team soon. Additionally, our software’s version for partners will go live in the autumn of this year – leading to the final step of elevating our platform to the global market.

Fun fact / information about your company:

WakeupData has handled more than 60.000.000 products.

Founder(s):

Allan Jørgensen,

Dennis Cassøe

Employees: 2

Headquarters: Århus C

Year Founded: 2014

Website: Link

Twitter: Link

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link

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Startup Insights: LeanLinking

2015-04-22

Presenting the next company in our Startup Insights campaign – LeanLinking! LeanLinking is a cloud-based all-in-one procurement tool for companies with a central procurement function. This all started back in Århus in 2013, where Lars Kuch Pedersen (founder) had this great idea for this sourcing tool! See what it lookes like and read about them below. 

Elevator Pitch:

LeanLinking is a cloud-based all-in-one procurement tool for companies with a central procurement function. With LeanLinking the procurement function can register, store and share all data, files and feedback related to their suppliers.

Product description:

LeanLinking is an all-in-one procurement tool, which addresses the problem around collecting and getting value out of supplier performance information quickly in large and dispersed organizations.

How it works:

The solution applies social media principles to document, rate, review, manage and ultimately improve supplier performance across big organizations and make better supplier agreements. LeanLinking also enables companies to connect with their suppliers via the platform and hereby store and share data, information and communication related to each supplier.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

To accelerate the growth of LeanLinking, plain and simple!

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

Lars is a former Sourcing Director and needed this tool but could not find any providers. Therefore Lars started LeanLinking.

Founder: Lars Kuch Pedersen

Employees: We are 5 geeks and a sourcing guy changing the world of procurement.

Headquarters: Aarhus

Year Founded: 2013

Website: Link

Twitter: Link

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link

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Accelerace Invest: Sproom aquired by Visma

2015-04-14

Copenhagen based start-up Sproom, a paper-free electronic invoicing platform, has been acquired by Visma, the leading business solution provider in Northern Europe, focusing on business optimization and management tools for the enterprise.

Since the launch in 2011, Sproom has become the leading electronic invoicing platform in Denmark and currently holds more than 20,000 customers and had a growth rate of 37% in 2015. By using Sproom’s cloud based services companies can automate and verify their invoicing process efficiently no matter which accounting system they use and hereby significantly save time but more importantly reduce or remove manual processes and thereby human errors.

The acquisition is part of Visma’s strategy of being the market leader within digital solutions. Going forward Sproom will continue as an independent solution and existing customers and partners can look forward to continual developments with Visma as new owners.

“Together with Visma we can accelerate our business development and boost the use of electronic invoicing in such a way that the solutions will be even more accessible, economically beneficial and continually add quality for thousands of companies, says Sproom CEO and co-founder Thomas Permin Berger.

Mads Rebsdorf, director of e-conomic & Visma Software SMB DK, says in the official Visma press release: “We see a great potential for Danish companies in digital business solutions like electronic invoicing. By acquiring Sproom Visma will offer even stronger solutions on this market, both as part of Visma’s products like for example the accounting program e-conomic and to Danish companies that are not currently using the Visma business solutions.”

Accelerating growth since 2011

Sproom joined Accelerace in the Spring of 2011 for six months of strategic consulting and later in 2011 received an investment of 3M DKKfrom Accelerace invest. Today Sproom has 12 employees and annual turnover of 10M DKK, and are expecting to maintain steep growth rates in the coming years.

Thomas Permin Berger CEO of Sproom says: “We have been really pleased with our participation in Accelerace and the strategic counseling which have proven to be crucial in both raising capital to make our visions come true and to meet the expectations of our shareholders.”

Jesper Knudsen, member of board of the directors at Sproom and partner at Accelerace says: “From the very beginning when they joined Accelerace we have looked upon Sproom as a startup with high-growth potential, lots of passion and an excellent team. We are very pleased to have been part of this journey and help build their position in the market and take the company to new highs. As investors we are pleased to see Sproom joining forces with Visma as this will provide new business opportunities for both parties and we are looking forward to follow the next steps of Sproom and Visma.”

The acquisition of Sproom is the 3rd exit in nine months for Accelerace Invest who only invests in high-potential startups companies which have been through extensive training in the Accelerace accelerator program. Recently GreenTrapOnline got acquired by Motalin and in September 2015 Iposen was acquired by Dansk Supermarked.

Read the official press release from Visma about the acquisition of Sproom here:

Read more about Sproom here: www.sproom.net/ and Visma here: http://www.visma.dk/

Visit the Accelerace Crunchbase page to see more about our investments.

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Startup Insights: Ingenium Golf

2015-04-09

Presenting our next Accelerace participant: Ingenium Golf​! This team has dedicated their company to solve the many administrative issues related to managing golf courses along with modernizing the entire way of playing through a new awesome GPS application! 

Elevator Pitch:

Ingenium Golf offer golf clubs a unique cloud- and app-based service called “Course Manager”. With Course Manager, club management can market the golf course and club sponsors to golfers in new and more flexible ways, both digitally in apps and in print.

Product:

Course Manager consists of three parts:

  • a modern and easy-to-use GPS app, where you can track and update the golf course
  • an administration platform for maintenance of sponsor and club information, as well as preparation of the digital course guide
  • an app presenting the golf course and sponsors to golfers, also offering GPS position, distance measurement and pin position (if maintained by the club)

Course Manager gives you new and profitable ways of making your sponsors visible. In addition golf course data is used to help green keepers keep track of area calculations, registration of fertilizer and pesticide usage as well as correct reporting of “green accounting” to environmental authorities.

How did your company start, how did you get the idea?

Jacob Markussen is a keen golfer and during his “Master of IT product design” university studies he initiated and completed several golf related projects. After he attained his Master’s degree the company was founded, and two and a half years later a unique cloud- and app-based service was ready for golf clubs and golfers worldwide. The first 30 golf clubs are already on board.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

Ingenium Golf is a small and innovative IT start-up. We applied for the Accelerace program to get external expert assistance in transforming into a structured, efficient company delivering innovative solutions to the golf segment, while still keeping the start-up mentality, drive and energy. Furthermore, Accelerace will help support our global ambitions by strengthening our value proposition and go-to-market strategies.

Fun fact:

With Course Manager we have measured 201 golf courses with GPS (some partially measured), 2759 bunkers and in total 14.381.084 m2 of golf course land area.

Management:

Jacob Markussen, Founder & Inventor.

Hans Henrik Junge, Partner & CEO.

Headquarter:

Haslegårdsvej 8-10, 8210 Aarhus V

Year Founded:

2012

Website: Link

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link

Contact:

Hans Henrik Junge: +45 4016 5144

Jacob Markussen: +45 6110 3372

Visuals of the app: 

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Startup Insights: Mono+Mono

2015-03-26

Next up on Startup Insights we have Mono+mono: These guys had a massively successful Kickstarter campaign last year and are now scaling their business through the Accelerace program! Wanna know how it all started? Read their story below: 

Elevator Pitch:

The World’s most compact foldable seat, perfect for all outings. Making resting truly portable.

Product/Service description:

A foldable seat that fits in your pocket, made from telescopic tubing and folds into the size of a 50 CL beverage can.

How it works:

Split outer shell, extend, twist. 1-2-3.

The users then lean on Sitpack using their own legs as stabilizers, keeping body, and brain active, engaging core, stimulating balance, and keeping energy levels higher.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

We applied for Accelerace with Sitpack to gain new and valuable business insight and advice in regards to streamlining go-to market strategy and maturing both product and business profile for new market entry.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

5 years ago on Roskilde Festival we got frustrated about the lack of portable seating. Traditional solutions were extremely complex and clumsy.

Since then we have been working on several product ideas and Sitpack is the first product to become a reality

Other big news about your company?

Mono+Mono had strived for 450,000 DKK in a Kickstarter campaign – they raised over 1,000,000 DKK with over 2,500 backers in total! That’s quite cool. You can see the campaign here.

Fun fact:

The 2 founders have a 100% academic background; hence the learning curve has been ridiculous.

Also, we have tried crossing the Atlantic in a sailing boat, that crashed in a storm.

Founder(s):

Jonas Lind-Bendixen

Nikolaj Bak

Employees: 3

Headquarters: Copenhagen, Denmark

Year Founded: 2014

Website(s):

www.monoplusmono.dk

www.sitpack.dk

Twitter: Link

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link

Demo video:

READ MORE

Startup Insights: Dall Energy

2015-03-18

Startup Insights is back with one of our industrial companies – Dall Energy! Back in 2007, Jens Dall Bentzen founded Dall Energy based on a patent about gas cooling and heat recovery. Dall Energy now delivers several solutions to drastically reduce biomass emissions in energy plants! This company has since won several awards for their entrepreneurial thinking within their technologies. CNN even interviewed the founder, Jens Dall Bentzen, check it out below.

Product/Service description:

Dall Energy delivers a multi-fuel furnace/oven.

How it works:

Converts all types of waste into clean energy. This is done through several solutions.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?  

It was important for us to get a scalable business plan for Dall Energy, which is why we applied for the Accelerace program.

How did your company start, and how did you get the idea?

Long story short: Prior to founding Dall Energy, Jens Dall Bentzen was a project manager in the consulting company COWI A/S, responsible for research and development of new biomass technologies. In 2007, he decided to start Dall Energy. This was based on a patent he about gas cooling and heat recovery. This pending patent was then bought by COWI and thus led to the start of Dall Energy.

Good to know about Dall Energy:

  • First Dane to get “European Inventor Award”
  • Participation in CNN International
  • American Seed investor: ”Spraying Systems”

Fun fact:

How Dall Energy got into the American market is actually a funny story.

The owner of “Warwik Mills”, Charlie Howland, was about to change from oil to biomass, but the state of New Hampshire announced tightening of requirements for particle emission. Therefore, if Warwick Mills wanted a locally produced biomass furnace/oven, they had to invest in a larger particle-filter system. The biomass project would then be way to expensive.

Charlie was about to give up but started researching on the subject. He then found Dall Energy, who had just released their initial test results from their pilot project.

Charlie then flew to Denmark to speak with Dall Energy, and shortly after a deal was made, where Dall Energy was to lead the engineering at Warwick Mills.

The new installations were live in the summer of 2014, and are still alive and kicking today.

When the emission-controllers came out to document if the furnace/oven was running according to the harsh emissions requirements in New Hampshire, the officials thought their testing equipment was broken – but the fact was that the new furnace was emitting shockingly low emissions.

If you are interested in seeing more about this funny story, then check out this video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LcBN7xeCOYA

Founder: Jens Dall Bentzen

Employees: 2

Headquarters: Scion DTU, Hørsholm

Year Founded: 2007

Website: Link

CNN Interview: Link

READ MORE

Ivisys is introduced to the Swedish stockexchange

2015-03-17

There was tremendous interest and 12.2 million Swedish kroner’s worth of new shares have been issued. The company now has 435 new shareholders. Jakob Kesje, the founder of the company, welcomed them.

“I want to begin by welcoming our many new shareholders as owners of Ivysis,” he said.

“We are excited about the amazing outcome of the issue and we look forward to utilising the proceeds to increase the workforce, marketing and sales efforts and ultimately increase the growth rate.”

The Stockholm exchange chosen by Ivysis has welcomed over 40 listings in the past year, while the Copenhagen First North stock exchange hasn’t had a single one.

But Kesje told Børsen he thinks there is interest in Denmark in companies like Ivysis.

“The high number of shareholders who subscribed and the relatively large backing from Danish investors confirms there is also interest in Denmark in investing in early-stage micro-cap companies,” he said.

READ MORE

Ivisys is introduced to the Swedish stockexchange

2015-03-17

There was tremendous interest and 12.2 million Swedish kroner’s worth of new shares have been issued. The company now has 435 new shareholders. Jakob Kesje, the founder of the company, welcomed them.

“I want to begin by welcoming our many new shareholders as owners of Ivysis,” he said.

“We are excited about the amazing outcome of the issue and we look forward to utilising the proceeds to increase the workforce, marketing and sales efforts and ultimately increase the growth rate.”

The Stockholm exchange chosen by Ivysis has welcomed over 40 listings in the past year, while the Copenhagen First North stock exchange hasn’t had a single one.

But Kesje told Børsen he thinks there is interest in Denmark in companies like Ivysis.

“The high number of shareholders who subscribed and the relatively large backing from Danish investors confirms there is also interest in Denmark in investing in early-stage micro-cap companies,” he said.

READ MORE

TeleSkin secures funding

2015-03-12

Serbian TeleSkin won Europe’s largest startup competition, Next Step Challenge, last year and the 1st prize of $300,000. Now they are accelerating their growth with a venture investment of $900,000.

TeleSkin has developed the app skinScan, which will revolutionize the prevention of skin cancer. The solution is based on the team’s more than 30 years of work experience within skin cancer. skinScan works by letting the user take a picture of a mole or skin lesion and analyzes it as ‘typical’ or ‘atypical’. It is also possible to send the picture to an affiliated specialist for an expert opinion. The team behind TeleSkin consists of IT specialists and doctors. The app is expected to be launched during the first quarter of 2015.
The primary investment comes from SEED Capital, while Welfare Tech Invest and a Serbian investor, Aleksandar Obradovic, accounts for a small proportion of the total investment of $900,000.

“Denmark is the country in the world which has the third highest incidence of melanoma, so it makes sense for us to develop the product here. The investment will be used to get our product in the market and strengthen our team here in Denmark. Right now we are looking for the right CMO, which can accelerate our marketing activities. The plan is that we will launch in Denmark first and then subsequently Scandinavia and the rest of Europe. Last year was fantastic for us, but I think that this year will be even more exciting with some interesting challenges ahead. We would not have it any other way,” says co-founder and CTO, Zeljko Ratkaj.

“We look forward to following TeleSkin that with the combination of biomedical engineering and digital technology can tackle a growing global problem,” says Søren Lottrup, partner in Accelerace which is the management company for Welfare Tech Invest, and continues: “Through our accelerator program, TeleSkin has taken some major steps forward with a skilled and dedicated team with more than 30 years of experience within the field of skin cancer.”

Mobile Health gaining ground
Mobile Health is a broad term that covers everything from wellness to more traditional medical practice supported by mobile devices. While increasing healthcare costs is a growing problem, Mobile Health can help to remedy this in a new way using the smartphone, which previously only could be performed at the doctor or hospital.

“Mobile Health is one of the trends that are clearly on our radar. Mobile Health makes consumers able to monitor their own health and the “empowerment” of patients can help to drive new changes on the innovation of the healthcare system. We have many years of experience with both Medtech and IT investments and since this is in a tense field between the two, so I am sure that we are the perfect match for getting TeleSkin off the ground. TeleSkin have a really strong team and can help to revolutionize the prevention of skin cancer in the future, “says Investment Director of SEED Capital, Jón Ingi Benediktsson.

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Startup Insights: mediathand

2015-03-11

Founded back in 2012, mediathand became a reality as a spin-out from the Advanced Technology Foundation (Højteknologifonden)! Mediathand also has a deep passion for coffee; they even have their own CCO – Chief Coffee Officer! Read more about this coffee-loving team in this interview!

Elevator Pitch:

mediathand’s end2end, turnkey OTT streaming service is a low risk fast track for companies to deliver world class quality streaming experiences to viewers on any screen, anywhere anytime.

Product/Service description:

mediathand offers a fully hosted, end2end, modular or turnkey professional streaming service. The streaming service is inclusive world-class quality encoding, professional capture setup, storage and a very scalable streaming distribution setup. The streaming service also comes with apps to major screens and platforms, interactive services in the streaming, support for Marlin & PlayReady DRM, automated EPG’s, DIY subscription management system, Online DIY TV- or VOD shop, payment integration, analytics and much more.

How it works:

mediathand offers a unique, low risk and manageable OTT streaming fast-track to market:

  1. Approve software requirement specification from mediathand
  2. Deliver TV and/or VOD feed(s) to mediathand
  3. Deliver design and UI instructions to mediathand
  4. Deliver subscription models to mediathand
  5. Approve internal test(s)
  6. Launch a market leading streaming service within avg. 6 months

For telecom companies, cable- and satellite TV and VOD operators, TV distributors and broadcasters a mediathand streaming service is a fast track to market with no-technology risk, fast access to revenue streams and viewer engagement.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

We have received a positive interest from various US companies and as the US market is very attractive we have applied for the Accelerace program to get assistance with the US go to market plan.

How did your company start, how did you get the idea?

The company started as a spin out from an Advanced Technology Project (Højteknologi fondsprojekt) as a cooperation with Danish Broadcasting, University of Aalborg, Nokia, Motorola, Telenor and others.

Fun fact / information about your company:

We have a very solid and very deep insight and 15+ years of experience within encoding and all-important aspects of streaming. We have a CCO – Chief Coffee Officer – and quality Coffee is very valued in the company – almost as much as quality streaming.

Founder(s): Allan Hammershøj, Emil Heinze, Gil Pedersen og Gert Skov Petersen

Employees: 10

Headquarters: Frederikskaj 12, 2450 København SV.

Year Founded:  2012

Website: Link

LinkedIn: Link

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Sekoia får kapitalindsprøjtning på 20 mio. kr. til internationalisering

2015-03-05

– For Sekoia er det her et kæmpe klap på skulderen. Northcaps investering hjælper os til at sætte strøm til vores ambitioner om at være verdens bedste ”point-of-care” platform. Vi skal nu styrke holdet yderligere, finjustere produktet og fortsætte vores færd ud i omkringliggende markeder, hvor behovet for det vi leverer, også er konstant stigende, fortæller direktør Ole Langvad Wessby, Sekoia.

For kunden betyder Sekoia kvalitetsforbedringer og færre fejl. Kommunerne kan ganske enkelt flytte tid fra kontoret og ud til borgerne med Sekoias løsning, som letter administrative og tidskrævende opgaver og i stedet skaber mere ansigtstid og nærvær med borgerne. Sammenlagt giver det besparelser. Alene i Odense Kommune forventes Sekoias løsninger at frigive 10 mio. kr. årligt.

– Antallet af ældre borgere er stigende, og det skaber en kæmpe markedsmulighed for nye velfærdsteknologier som Sekoia. I Northcap ser vi frem til samarbejdet med virksomhedens stærke team omkring internationalisering mod markeder som England, Tyskland og resten af Skandinavien. Danmark er et arnested for velfærdsteknologier, og de nuværende kunder har leveret et stort input til løsningen, som nu er klar til at blive rullet ud i større stil på de internationale markeder, siger Kim Wiencken, der er partner i Northcap.

Lettere hverdag med mindre fejl

Sekoias løsning, der slet og ret har navnet Sekoia, er en ”point-of-care”-skærmløsning til plejecentre og bosteder. Programmet gør hverdagen lettere for personale, borgere og pårørende i plejesektoren og mindsker risikoen for fejl betydeligt. De forskellige apps på Sekoia anvendes til alt fra planlægning, opgave- og aktivitetsstyring til logistik og varebestilling, helt over til telesundhed og rehabilitering.

Sekoia har tidligere deltaget i accelerator-programmet Accelerace og modtaget vækstkapital fra Nupark Accelerace. Den tidligere Just Eat-direktør og ”angel”-investor i Sekoia, Klaus Nyengaard, fortsætter sit engagement som bestyrelsesformand i virksomheden.

Læs mere om Sekoia på www.sekoia.dk

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Startup Insights: Huuray

2015-02-25

Introducing our first participant in the Accelerace program – Huuray! Founded by Rune Eirby Poulsen in 2012, Huuray offers digital gift cards, which enables you to send digital gift cards for top brands. Rune currently has a lot on his plate, not only as an entrepreneur – but also as a professional handball player in Lund, Sweden! Read more about the company below. 

Elevator Pitch:

Huuray is a Scandinavian digital gift card company, which enables you to send digital gift cards for top brands, such as Interflora, Just-Eat, Zalando, Matas etc. We have made it possible for you to send the digital gift cards directly to the receiver’s mobile phone in seconds.
We offer companies a unique incentive platform, where they instantly can reward their members/costumers/employees by pressing one button – send out large numbers of digital gift cards.

Product:

Our product is a incentive platform where companies instantly and easy can reward their members with digital gift card for +100 top brands. It gives the end-user the possibility to choose digital gift cards from a large number of stores or webshops throughout Scandinavia.

Why did you apply for the Accelerace program?

We want a professional input from outside to assess our opportunities and challenges from the strengths and weaknesses we have. It is all about a “second opinion” so that we can increase our growth.

Founder: Rune Eirby Poulsen

Employees: 4

Headquarters: Kongens Nytorv, Hovedvagtsgade 8, 2 floor – 1103 Copenhagen K.

Year Founded: 2012

Fun fact:
We have two protecting offices dogs – Baby and Junior. We are very privileged in our office, so we have our own haircutter and masseur!

Website:
DK: https://sendentanke.dk
SE: https://huuray.se
NO: https://huuray.no
FI: https://huuray.fi

Twitter (@huuraycorp): Link

Facebook: Link

LinkedIn: Link

Telephone: +45 70224700

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Nupark Accelerace Invest investerer i Yaneeda

2015-02-06

Nupark Accelerace Invest har netop investeret 4 millioner kroner i den danske rejseportal Yaneeda.com, der skærer det traditionelle rejsebureau væk med stor økonomisk gevinst for forbrugeren. Med investeringen udvider Yaneeda.com med fire nye medarbejdere og etablerer sig endnu stærkere på det danske rejsemarked.

Danske Yaneeda.com giver nu rejseglade forbrugere endnu bedre mulighed for selv at sammensætte drømmerejsen. Yaneeda.com gør det nemlig muligt at springe rejsebureauet over og planlægge ture gennem kontakt med lokale rejsearrangører på de mange destinationer verden over. Dette har tidligere være forbeholdt rejsebureauerne, men udbydes nu til Yaneeda.coms brugere, som kan spare op mod 30 % af rejsens pris.

”Investeringen fra Nupark Accelerace Invest giver os et stort boost, og vi er meget spændte på at have de nye kræfter med om bord. Vi kan nu fokusere endnu stærkere på det danske rejsemarked, som vil komme vores mange kunder til gode,” siger Hasse Hunskjær, CEO hos Yaneeda.com, og fortsætter: ”I 2015 planlægger vi at udvide teamet med fire nye medarbejdere og har allerede nu tilføjet flere nye rejseture til vores online portal, hvor vi udbyder alt fra dykkerferier, ø-hop, jungle-trekking til Everest basecamp og Galapagos.”

Stort internationalt vækstpotentiale
Den århusianske virksomhed har tidligere deltaget i vækstprogrammet Accelerace for lovende iværksættere. Det er i forlængelse af dette 5-måneders vækstforløb, at Nupark Acclerace Invest har valgt at indlemme Yaneeda.com i investeringsporteføljen.

”Yaneeda.com har udviklet sig hastigt og har imponeret os meget. De er en first mover på rejsemarkedet med den nye måde at booke rejser på, da det er de lokale rejsearrangører selv, der sætter deres egne rejser til salg, og selv svarer på forespørgsler. De er med til at præge en spændende udvikling i rejsemarkedet, og vi glæder os meget til at følge Yaneeda.com fremover,” siger rådgiver og investor Claus Kristensen fra vækstprogrammet Accelerace.

Leo Hansen, CEO hos Nupark Accelerace Invest siger: ”Yaneeda.com er skabt af erfarne og engagerede kræfter indenfor rejsebranchen, og de har en skalérbar forretningsmodel med et stort internationalt potentiale. Det gør dem rigtig interessante investeringsmæssigt.”

Gennem den nye rejseportal får man adgang til de samme rejser med den samme sikkerhed og de samme garantier som hos rejsebureauerne, og Yaneeda.com er selvfølgelig medlem af Rejsegarantifonden. Næste skridt er at indgå et større antal strategiske alliancer for at udbrede rejsekonceptet, først i Danmark og siden i resten af Europa.

Få mere information om Yanneda.com her: www.yaneeda.com eller i denne Youtube-video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4LRrd8MSwQ

Om Yaneeda.com
Yaneeda.com er et online rejseselskab for den moderne forbruger, der selv vil planlægge og sammensætte sin rejse, men med visheden om, at kvalitet og sikkerhed er i orden. Med Yaneeda.com slipper man for uautoriserede rejsearrangører og gadesælgere, der lover ”special price”. Yaneeda.com sælger de produkter, de lokale rejsearrangører allerede har på hylderne og sælger dem direkte til kunderne. Det betyder ganske enkelt, at rejsebureauet er skåret væk, så man kan købe billigere rejser og planlægge ferien præcis, som man vil have den. Yaneeda.com har kontor i Århus. Læs mere på www.yaneeda.com eller på telefon 70 70 25 20.

Om Accelerace
Accelerace er Skandinaviens førende acceleratorprogram, som arbejder med de mest lovende danske og internationale iværksættere og vækstvirksomheder. Over et 5-måneders forretningsudviklingsforløb hjælper Accelerace virksomheden til vækst gennem hjælp fra konsulenter, camps og netværk. Årligt optages 60 danske og internationale virksomheder inden for it, life-science og industri. Siden 2008 har Accelerace spottet, trænet og investeret i mere end 250 startups og spin-off virksomheder. 93 % af virksomhederne er stadig på markedet i dag. Accelerace har 6 kontorer i Danmark. Få mere information på www.accelerace.dk eller kontakt Accelerace på telefon 39 17 94 04 eller e-mail: info@accelerace.dk

Om Nupark Accelerace Invest
Nupark Accelerace Invest er et investeringsselskab, der er stiftet i et samarbejde mellem Færchfonden og Vald. Birn Holding A/S i Holstebro, af Accelerace Invest i København og af Region Midtjyllands kapitalsatsning baseret på EU’s socialfondsmidler: Den Midtjyske Iværksætterfond. Samarbejdet tager udgangspunkt i en enighed om, at succesfulde vækstiværksættere ofte har brug for kapital til at vokse, og at de sammen med kapitalen ofte har brug for at høste erfaring, sparring og rådgivning fra erfarne mentorer. Få mere information her: www.nuparkaccelerace.dk eller på telefon 96 12 72 12 eller e-mail accelerace@nupark.dk

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Triple-digit million investment to Aquaporin

2015-02-01

Danica Pension is investing millions in Danish cleantech company Aquaporin as part of the pension provider’s focus on direct investments in healthy and well-run companies. Aquaporin has developed a unique technology for filtering and purifying water to make clean drinking water.

Aquaporin’s huge growth potential is driven by growing global demand for clean water coupled with a thoroughly tested product that requires limited amounts of materials and is easily integrated in existing products. We’re making this investment because we are confident that it will add value to our customer’s savings. This is what motivates us to seek out investments with the highest and most secure returns,” says Lars Thørs, Danica Pension.

With Danica Pension’s investment, we are now backed by a strong investor, which represents a seal of approval and allows us to concentrate on what we do best. We are therefore excited about this new arrangement, which we expect will have excellent benefits for both parties,” said CEO Peter Holme Jensen, Aquaporin.

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Brain+ wins Accelerace Investor Day Winter 2015

2015-01-30

11 fast growing startups pitched their unique business idea at Accelerace Investor Day on January 29th held at Docken in Copenhagen. The event gathered startups, investors and alumni companies for an evening of great pitches, networking & deal flow. Brain+ won Accelerace Investor Day and Bookingabus.com was runner up.

Brain+ won Investor Day with an impressive pitch presentation about their new brain training app solution that enhance general cognitive performance, prevents a decline in cognitive ability due to aging and the app can assist in rehabilitation of cognitive ability lost due to brain damage. Bookingabus.com came in second with their online buss rental platform which is the first in Europe to provide instant pricing and domestic transports.

Prior to Investor Day, the startups completed the 5-month Accelerace business accelerator program which offers valuable learning experiences from camps and events and guidance from experienced business accelerators and consultants. Investor Day celebrates the Accelerace companies by selecting a noteworthy group to pitch to Danish investors. This year’s Investor Day also included two startups (Buying Butler & EasyPreOrders) from our UK accelerator program Next Business Generation.

The Investor Day event was held in Docken in Copenhagen and gathered the entire Danish investment community with more than 200 participants for a series of 11 intense, 7-minute startup pitches and lots of networking.

The 11 pitching companies at Investor Day were: Begravelsesguiden.dk, Bookingabus.com, By Falengreen, Buying Butler, Brain+, Open Telehealth, Fibrenetrix, Greenticket, SUMA Care, Absolute SLS & EasyPreOrders.

The companies were judged on a variety of criteria including their business opportunities, team, recent performance, growth potential and competitive advantages. The winners were selected by the audience.

The 11 pitching companies on stage

Accelerce CEO Peter Torstensen introducing the day’s program

More than 200 participants used the coffee breaks for networking and mingling at the conference venue Docken in Copenhagen

Brain+ with their Business Accelerator David Ventzel

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Meet the new Accelerace batch!

2015-01-22

Every year Accelerace is in dialogue with more than 800 startup companies and entrepreneurs with ambitions to grow their startup into a successful venture. From these many companies we are proud to present the following 16 startup stars who have just been accepted into the 13th batch of the Accelerace program.

Check out a short introduction to the companies and their many innovations below and follow the companies during the next 6-months in Accelerace on our Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn pages.

Huuray.com
Huuray! is a platform that generates e-commerce sales by unique voucher codes and floor traffic for top brands.
www.huuraygroup.com

Skillpocket
Skillpocket is a community marketplace that helps you hire expert professionals.
www.skillpocket.com

Mediathand ApS
Mediaathand offers live TV, instant catch up and TV archives for all media, from the flat screen in the living room, to the computer in the office, the tablet in the bedroom or the mobile on the bus.
www.mediathand.com

Washa
Washa offers a quick and easy laundry service – right to your doorstep.
www.washa.dk

Mono+Mono (Sitpack product)
The world’s most compact foldable seat.
www.sitpack.dk

Paqle               
Paqle offers a complete market media-monitoring platform for more than just professionals and PR managers.
www.paqle.com

Ingenium Golf
Ingenium Golf develops intelligent golf experiences to golf clubs and players.
www.ingeniumgolf.com

Miiego
Miiego is an innovative Danish company, which offers wireless headphones for running, fitness and sports.
www.miiego.dk

Leanlinking.com
LeanLinking is your partner in developing means of greater cooperation both within your company and with your suppliers.
www.leanlinking.com

WakeUpData       
WakeUpData is a simple cloud based application that enables you to instantly modify feeds and data to your needs.
www.wakeupdata.com

Dall Energy
Dall Energy offers a biomass system that increases both fuel flexibility and energy efficiency. It decreases emissions, environmental impact and maintenance costs of biomass plants. 
www.dallenergy.com

Neurescue Aps
Neurescue is developing a new class of medical devices for the  treatment of cardiac arrest. Neurescue aims to be the foundation of a new platform of treatment methods for paramedics, nurses and doctors alike.

Northopedica
Northopedica delivers a technology called HipCap. It seeks to reduce and or eliminate the need and timing for the initial hip replacement or even a resurfacing, thereby reducing the need for replacements.

PETITE
PETITE offers an intelligent new sensor based on smartphone integrated medico technology for training of pelvis floor muscles.

CorporateHealth
CorporateHealth is establishing a new market for colon capsule endoscopy, by building a service business that provisions the procedure at the home (or a similarly convenient location for the patient) and centralizes the diagnostic.
http://www.corporatehealth-ag.com/solutions/

μMbed Solutions
μMbed has developed a technology platform providing controlled and scalable production of drug-loaded nanoparticles in the form of nano-embedded microparticles.

We can’t wait to work with you!

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Tutee får kapitalindsprøjtning i millionklassen

2014-12-19

Teknologi-virksomheden Tutee har netop modtaget investering på 3,5 million kroner fra investeringsselskaberne Nupark Accelerace Invest og CAPNOVA til udviklingen af deres e-læringsplatform til lektiehjælp. Kapitalindsprøjtningen skal sætte fart på Tutees vækst i Norden, hvor den unge virksomhed forventer at flerdoble forretningen inden for de næste år.

Med Tutees app-løsning og e-læringsplatform til lektiehjælp kan skolelærere og studerende på tværs af venskaber, klasser og skoler hjælpe hinanden online. Det gøres let ved at tage et billede af en lektieopgave, dele den med vennerne og løse opgaven sammen online.

”Vi har siden vores grundlæggelse i 2013 udviklet vores cloud-baserede app og e-læringsplatform, som gør det nemt og sjovt at lære på en ny måde. Vi er meget begejstrede for samarbejdet med Accelerace og CAPNOVA, og investeringen giver os nu mulighed for at styrke organisationen, hvilket er vigtigt for at kunne opretholde et højt serviceniveau og fortsætte vores positive vækst”, fortæller Ronni Baslund, direktør og medejer i Tutee.

Tutee blev stiftet i Esbjerg af fire iværksættere, herunder serieiværksætteren Ronnie Baslund, og er i dag vokset til 12 medarbejdere. Virksomheden arbejder sammen med danske kommuner, gymnasier og privatpersoner og oplever stor efterspørgsel af den nytænkende form for lektiehjælp og videndeling i, hvad der svarer til et virtuelt klasseværelse.

Ud over landets grænser

Tutee deltog i fjor i Europas største vækstkonkurrence Next Step Challenge i Esbjerg, hvor de modtog rådgivning og støtte fra vækstprogrammet Accelerace og SE. Det har modnet virksomheden over kort tid til at rejse kapital fra de nye investorer, som bl.a. tæller Acceleraces egen investeringsfond, Accelerace Invest.

”Vi er meget imponerede af Tutee og er overbevidste om, at de har et stort vækstpotentiale og kan blive førende internationalt inden for deres forretningsområde,” fortæller Søren Lottrup, partner i Accelerace, og fortsætter: ”Potentialet er stort, da både skoler, elever og forældre efterspørger et værktøj som Tutee, der kan reformere vores forståelse af lektiehjælp.”

Kim Kjølhede fra CAPNOVA siger: “CAPNOVA ser frem til at følge Tutee, som har skabt en innovativ løsning baseret på markedskendskab. Et samarbejdsværktøj til videnssamfundet, som især omfatter elevers anvendelse af it i undervisningen. Tutee er skabt af et godt team med høje kompetencer, erfaring og stort engagement.

I første omgang vil Tutee vinde fodfæste på det danske marked og siden søge mod Sverige og Norge, hvor de forventer at kunne flerdoble virksomhedens omsætning inden for få år. Virksomhedens vækstplaner bygger også på en forventning om at vokse fra 12 til 40 medarbejder allerede i år 2015.

For mere information besøg www.tuteeapp.com, www.nuparkaccelerace.dk, www.accelerace.dk og www.capnova.dk

Se også video-præsentationen af Tutee

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Next Step Challenge startup competition and accelerator launches its latest class

2014-12-02

Europe’s largest startup competition Next Step Challenge sponsored by Accelerace & SE has launched its latest international class of startups that includes 7 startups from the US, 2 from United Kingdom and startups from Israel, Germany and Sweden. The companies will compete for the largest entrepreneurial prize in Europe of 250,000 Euro.

The class includes companies developing products ranging from an app that instantly translates blurred speech into understandable speech, a smart-home company that delivers a complete home monitoring and automation solution in one display device and two smartphone-based sensors that enables you to detect and report available parking spaces in cities.

The Denmark-based startup competition and accelerator operates a six-month program focused on smart energy, smart home, digital health and communication. Each company in the Next Step Challenge receives 30,000 Euro in seed funding and the opportunity to win the first prize of 250,000 Euro.

So here are the 12 elected participants for the upcoming Next Step Challenge.

WordUp started in Provo, Utah (USA) in 2013 and is the world’s first global gaming platform for language learners, where students play games that are designed to teach them a new language while engaging and having fun with others students in other countries.

www.wordupgames.com

ParkTAG started in May 2014 in Germany. ParkTAG can crowdsource curbside parking occupancy purely based on Smartphone sensors. Data from 2-6% of the drivers in a city is enough for the advanced algorithm to predict available parking spaces.
www.parktag.mobi

TableGrabber is a Silicon Valley based startup that provides restaurants with software that allows the restaurants to forecast their demand and allow them to change their prices dynamically to increase their utilization and maximize their revenue potential.

www.rezguru.com

Insticator is a New York based company founded in 2014. Insticator is a platform that empowers the engagement of fans of TV content by syncing gamification, social validation and a reward system into one experience where users can interact around the content.
www.insticator.com

Unified Intents is a Swedish company founded in 2010 that provides you with the Unified Remote app for your computer. This app allows you to turn your Smartphone into a wireless remote control for your computer, anything from video players and Netflix like apps to basic control
www.unifiedremote.com

iNovar is a company from Great Britain launched in 2013. They provide an app that allows you to access all of your corporate content regardless of vendor or format on your choice of mobile device with 100% data security and 0% re-engineering.
www.mybi2go.com

CloudGrid was founded in February 2014 in Great Britain. CloudGrid is an open cloud-based platform for energy analytics and control of electrical networks by clicking onto existing electrical wiring and enables wireless data collection and circuit control from any web enabled device allowing you to save up to 30% energy expenditure.

www.cloudgrid.org

Admetsys is a Boston, MA (USA) based company. Admetsys has developed the first fully-automated blood glucose control system (i.e. artificial pancreas) for hospital care, optimizing a procedure that have remained unchanged for 30 years.

www.admetsys.com

RapidSOS is based in Boston, MA and New York, NY (USA) and founded in 2012. They deliver a service with the ability to deliver requests for help directly to emergency dispatch centers while bypassing the conventional and cumbersome phone call. Furthermore they offer a platform to distribute geofenced alerts to users on a given network.

www.rapidsos.com

Nwave Technologies is based in Great Britain. Nwave provides a low-power, high-range, and cost-efficient to deploy and communicate with IoT devices. The technology has many applications opportunities, the first of which to be implemented by Nwave, is a parking system. This allows you to detect and report available parking space in a city.

www.nwavetec.com

Voiceitt from Israel started in 2014. They provide you with an app that enables people with speech disabilities to speak clearly with nothing but with their own voice. The application functions as a translator of blurred speech into understandable speech.

www.talkitt.com

Sentri is a Silicon Valley startup that started in April 2014. Sentri is a complete home monitoring and automation solution in one display device. The Sentri device adapts to your home, and delivers personalized alerts along with a video feed of your home to your Smartphone.
www.sentri.me

For more information go to www.nextstepchallenge.com  or watch this video of the Next Step Challenge program https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA79hCTZPOQ

About Next Step Challenge
Next Step Challenge is Europe’s largest and most ambitious startup competition and based on a partnership between the energy company SE & Accelerace – Scandinavia’s largest accelerator. The aim of Next Step Challenge is to make use of the unique digital infrastructure in the Region of Southern Denmark. Next Step Challenge want to put it to work by letting businesses with big ideas and visions discover how cutting-edge technological possibilities can help them achieve their goals. www.nextstepchallenge.com

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600 mio. kr. på højkant i europæisk x-factor for it-iværksættere

2014-11-26

FIWARE er temaet når 16 nye acceleratorprogrammer på tværs af Europa skal være med til at booste miljøet indenfor Internet of Things (IoT), big data og koncepter der opererer i skyen. Der er 375.000 kr. kvit og frit til hver startup, der bliver optaget i programmerne.

Et nyt EU-program skal forsøge at sætte skub i de gode it-opfindelser på tværs af kontinentet ved at lade borgere fra hele EU konkurrere på deres idéer og iværksættergen.

»Formålet er at gøre EU mere konkurrencestærk og bygge infrastrukturen til fremtidens internet,« siger Mikkel Toft-Olsen, der er programchef for en af EU-projektets danske partnere Accelerace, til Version2.

Han fortsætter: »Det er okay, at man kun starter med en god idé, så længe man bliver ved med at udvikle sig,« siger Mikkel Toft-Olsen.

Iværksætterne skal bruge en fælleseuropæisk udviklingsplatform

De 600 mio. kr. er fordelt over 16 acceleratorprogrammer på tværs af Europa, hvor iværksætterne får adgang til et bredt netværk og sparring for at udvikle idéerne.

Danske iværksættere kan i princippet ansøge alle programmerne, men det er kun et mindre udsnit, der er tilgængelige i Danmark. Det gælder SpeedUpIMPACTSmartAgriFood2 ogFABulous, hvor de gennemgående temaer blandt andet er smarte byer, miljø, energi, medier og landbrug.

Udgangspunktet for at være med i konkurrencen er, at man skal benytte en særlig europæisk udviklingsplatform kaldet FIWARE, der er blevet udviklet til formålet. FIWARE består af en række konkrete værktøjer, også kaldet generic enablers, som blandt andet lægger nogle standarder for kommunikationen i et IoT-setup.

»Mange af de her elementer findes nok allerede, men det unikke er, at det er gratis, open source og til rådighed som del af en større infrastruktur,« siger Mikkel Toft-Olsen.

Det er nogle af de største it-virksomheder i Europa, der har udviklet værktøjerne, heriblandt IBM, SAP, Orange og Telefónica.

Hver accelerator holder en finale blandt deltagerne, hvor hovedpræmien ligger på omkring 1,5 mio. kr.

Deadline for tilmelding sker over de næste par måneder afhængigt af hvert program. StartUp Europe har deadline den 10. december.

Læs hele artiklen på: http://www.version2.dk/artikel/600-mio-kr-paa-hoejkant-i-europaeisk-x-factor-it-ivaerksaettere-70989  

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Upcoming events, November 2014!

2014-10-20

We have a lot of exiting events coming up.

We have a lot of exiting events coming up the next month, including two events in week 47, the global entrepreneurship week!

You can read more about these events and get your tickets below:
Accelerace Open House:

Looking to fast track your startup?

Accelerace is opening up the doors Wednesday November 12th for aspiring entrepreneurs and startups with the ambition to get their business on the fast track! At the Open House event you’ll get a chance to hear more about Accelerace, meet our mentors and get a first-hand impression of Accelerace from last year’s participants Penneo and Magick. The deadline to apply for the next round of Accelerace is November 23rd.

Date: November 12th 2014.

Location: Symbion, Fruebjergvej 3, 2100 København Ø.

Time: 15:00-18:00.

Link to event: https://accelerace-open-house2014.eventbrite.com

Price: Free.

 

Boost dit startup pitch!:

Connect Denmark og Accelerace inviterer til workshop, hvor du kan træne og få feedback på din pitch-præsentation fra vores ekspertpanel af erfarne mentorer. Arrangementet er en del af Uge47 – Danmarks Vækst og iværksætteruge.

Date: November 17th 2014.

Location: Symbion, Fruebjergvej 3, 2100 København Ø.

Time: 12:00-17:00.

Link to event: https://boost-dit-startup-pitch.eventbrite.com

Price: Free.

Note that the event is in Danish.

 

Perfect your startup handshake pitch! By Bill Joos:

Accelerace invites you to a unique event with Bill Joos, who is one of the best and most entertaining pitch doctors in Silicon Valley. Bill is Former VP of Entrepreneur Development at Garage Technology Ventures, which he helped co-found. He has literally worked with hundreds of early-to-mid stage startups worldwide and held conferences & workshops for more than 2000 entrepreneurs. This event is a part of week 47 – The Danish Entrepreneurship week.

Date: November 18th 2014.

Location: Symbion, Fruebjergvej 3, 2100 København Ø.

Time: 15:00-16:30.

Link to event: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/perfect-your-startup-handshake-pitch-by-bill-joos-tickets-13128661179

Price: Free.

 

We can’t wait to see you all!

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Next Step Challenge attracts more than 300 global start-up talents

2014-10-17

More than 300 international companies have applied to become part of Europe’s most ambitious start-up competition and accelerator program Next Step Challenge which will be running for the second consecutive year. Only 15 companies will join the competition that will take place in Denmark, where the companies will compete for the first prize of EUR 250,000.

More than 300 entrepreneurs from 75 different countries want to move to Denmark as part of the Next Step Challenge start-up competition. The number of applicants is a massive increase compared to last year’s 130 applicants. Startups from North Europe, UK and North America are strongly represented in the final pool of candidates.

“We are very proud, to attract this many ambitious entrepreneurs to the Next Step Challenge”, says Lisbeth Valther, Director of SE Next Step, which is part of the SE group. She further elaborates:

“The companies will develop their products and services based on the unique digital infrastructure of the southern region of Denmark with access to test products and solutions on a living lab of 260.000 households. This way the entrepreneurs will create the next generation of companies within smart energy, digitalization and digital health.”

Only 15 startups will compete in the finals

Next Step Challenge is initiated by SE, Accelerace and the region of Southern Denmark focusing mainly on new developments within digitalization and the opportunities it creates for future advancements. As part of the program the startups have a unique opportunity to test their business case through the digital infrastructure in the region of Southern Denmark. All the companies work within smart energy, digital health, smart home or communication services.

“In the first round of the Next Step Challenge the Serbian company Teleskin won the grand prize of EUR 250.000,” says Søren Lottrup, Partner in Accelerace and continues:

“Teleskin is today established in Denmark where they are in the process of improving their product innovation and expanding their team. Actually, previous contestants have proved that their ideas are both viable and possess huge potential. This is also a crucial success factor in the selection process towards the next round”.

In the beginning of November the most promising companies will present their business case in front of the Next Step Challenge selection board which consists of business leaders and industry experts.

Only the top 15 companies get selected for the challenging program which starts December 1st, 2014. The entire program ends in an award show in Esbjerg in Denmark in June 2015. During the program, the startups will get the opportunity to work alongside national and international experts connected to SE and Accelerace. Additionally, business developers from the region of Southern Denmark will visit Esbjerg during the program.

Want to know more about the Next Step Challenge? Then visit www.nextstepchallenge.com or check out the two-minute video presentation on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfIRIY-a-UU.

 

About the Next Step Challenge:

  • The Next Step Challenge is the most ambitious entrepreneur prize and accelerator program in Europe. Ambition really is the key word: the Challenge offers ambitious startups the chance to access a one-of-a-kind business development program and state-of-the-art digital infrastructure and smart grid.
  • During the 6-month program 15 promising startup companies will be working in Esbjerg in Denmark. The program includes workshops, labs and support from experienced Accelerace consultants.

In the Next Step Challenge the best international startups within smart energy, smart home, digital health and digital communication services compete for the biggest entrepreneurial prize in Europe of EUR 250.000. The Next Step Challenge is based on a partnership between SE, Accelerace and the region of Southern Denmark with a focus on providing continuing growth and development in the region of Southern Denmark.

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Eksperter: Derfor boomer danske iværksættere ikke

2014-07-16

Danske iværksættere er for dårlige til at vokse sig store og stærke i en fart. Faktisk er det kun et fåtal, der bliver til såkaldte vækstvirksomheder.

Lige nu jubler vi over antallet af nye danske virksomheder og unge, der vil prøve kræfter som iværksættere.

Men det er kun et fåtal, der i sidste ende bliver til såkaldte “vækstlokomotiver”, som kan trække gang i vækst og arbejdspladser.

Det fortæller Peter Torstensen, der er direktør i virksomheden Accelerace, som lever af at hjælpe små iværksættervirksomheder med at vokse sig store.

– Det er måske kun 0,1 procent af dem, som starter, der ender med at blive de her store vækstvirksomheder med 100 eller flere medarbejdere. Det er selvfølgelig super ærgerligt, og det er betydeligt mindre end i sammenlignelige lande, siger han.

Tre årsager til manglende vokseværk

Peter Torstensen peger på tre centrale årsager til, at der ikke er flere virksomheder, der vokser sig store og stærke herhjemme.

– Det første er, at det danske marked jo ikke er særlig stort. Og derfor skal man ret hurtigt uden for Danmarks grænser som ny virksomhed for at vokse, siger han.

For det andet har Danmark ifølge Peter Torstensen ikke særlig mange, der har været igennem rejsen fra spæd idé til stor virksomhed.

Han mener faktisk, at antallet herhjemme kan tælles på to hænder, og han peger i stedet på et land som USA, hvor der er langt flere, der har prøvet at skabe vækstvirksomheder.

– Og her i Danmark har vi altså behov for nogle flere af dem, der har prøvet det før, og som nu er i gang med at gøre det igen, siger Peter Torstensen.

I USA investerer man langt mere

Den tredje årsag er, at nogle af iværksætterne i stedet for at udvikle og ekspandere deres virksomhed i Danmark vælger at tage til udlandet, når de er i gang med deres væksteventyr.

– Enten fordi de ikke kan finde penge eller arbejdskraft nok. Eller fordi de gerne vil være tæt på det marked, som de skal vokse i, siger Peter Torstensen.

Han sammenligner igen med USA, hvor man investerer langt mere i unge virksomheder, hvis de skal vokse hurtigt.

På det amerikanske marked investerer man ifølge Peter Torstensen gladeligt 50 til 100 millioner dollar i en virksomhed, man tror på.

– Og i Danmark investerer vi vel 50 til 100 millioner kroner, hvis vi er rigtig heldige. Det er en femtedel af USA, siger han.

Professor: Der mangler tre ting

Alle de ting bekræfter professor i entreprenørskab på CBS, Serden Özcan.

Han forklarer, at entreprenørmiljøet i Danmark mangler tre grundlæggende hjørnesten for at kunne holde på iværksætterne: Venturekapital, specialister og adgang til et stort marked.

– Som iværksætter har du simpelthen brug for økonomisk støtte til at blive stor. Og derudover har du brug for specialiseret arbejdskraft til at udføre dine ideer, det kunne for eksempel være IT-udviklere, siger Serden Özcan.

Og så er Danmarks indre marked altså bare ikke stort nok.

– Så hvis man for eksempel udvikler små programmer til mobiler, så kan man måske få 50.000 brugere, men det er umuligt at få for eksempel fem millioner brugere, siger han.

Man har en anden vilje i USA

Serden Özcan fortæller, at det kan være årsagen til, at folk rejser ud af Danmark og i stedet starter deres kommende vækstvirksomhed i for eksempel USA.

– Og det er et problem, fordi det i sidste ende betyder, at entreprenørmiljøet herhjemme ikke vokser. Og fordi vi taber folk, så er vi heller ikke i stand til at tiltrække talenter fra andre lande, siger han.

Peter Torstensen mener, at der er nogle åbenlyse årsager til, at USA gør det bedre, når det kommer til at få små virksomheder til at vokse.

Også han peger på den åbenlyse fordel ved et stort marked, med plads til ekspansion.

– De har jo et hjemmemarked, der er koloenormt. Og så har de en længere tradition for at skabe vækstvirksomheder, end vi har. Det har de vel gjort de sidste 50 år, mens vi først for ti år siden begyndte at snakke om iværksættere, siger han.

– Så vi har slet ikke den samme tradition i Danmark, som de har i USA. Vi har så at sige ikke den samme vilje.

Source: http://www.dr.dk/Nyheder/Penge/2014/07/15/151647.htm

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Welcome to 15 new Accelerace startups

2014-07-01

Accelerace has just selected 15 of the most promising and ambitious startup companies on the Danish entrepreneur scene for a 5-month, intensive accelerator program.
Accelerace has just selected 15 of the most promising and ambitious startup companies on the Danish entrepreneur scene for a 5-month, intensive accelerator program.

The program includes: Over 180 hours of personal counseling and coaching with Accelerace consultants who have extensive experience as entrepreneurs. Accelerace labs with international experts such as Ted Zoller, Ash Maurya and pitch coach Bill Joos among others. Accelerace camps are designed to inspire, build networks and keep the participating startups up-to-date on the latest methods and tools within entrepreneurship and business development.

Some of the previous participants include Templafy, Kirkeweb, Abeo, Me-Mover, Confereize, GraduateLand, Queue-it, Penneo, recent winner of the best company award at Accelerace Investor Day 2014, and Magick and Coinify who tied for best pitch of the day (Read more here). Since 2005, more than 220 startups have gone through the accelerator program, which, in total, have created over 400 jobs and received more than € 72 million in funding. 94% of these startups are still in operation today.

The 15 new Accelerace participants are:

We can’t wait to work with you!

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Penneo wins Best Company award at Accelerace Investor Day

2014-06-18

18 startups pitched their unique business idea at Accelerace Investor Day that gathered the entire Danish investment community for a day of great pitches, networking, deal flow, and debate. Penneo won the award for best company. Coinify and Magick tied for best presentation.

Penneo won the award for best company at Accelerace Investor Day for their SaaS based electronic signature solution that makes it fast and easy to sign documents online using NemID. Penneo eliminates the need for printing and scanning or mailing signed documents. Magick, a SaaS company that has developed an innovative financial trading technology, and Coinify,  “the PayPal for Bitcoin” solution, tied for the award for best presentation.

Prior to Investor Day, the startups completed the 5-month Accelerace business accelerator program which offers valuable learning experiences from camps and events and guidance from experienced business accelerators and consultants. Investor Day celebrates the Accelerace companies by selecting a noteworthy group to pitch to Danish investors. The event gathered the entire Danish investment community with more than 175 participants for a series of 18 intense, 5-minute startup pitches, networking, and deal flow.

Deal flow & debate
The event also included an intense debate between Business angel & serial entrepreneur Thomas Madsen-Mygdal and Vækstfonden’s Ulrik Jørring addressing if and how government should involve itself in the startup ecosystem. The two combatants where flanked by Martin Kyed from CEPOS and Business angel & serial entrepreneur Klaus Nyengaard. The debate was moderated by Accelerace CEO Peter Torstensen.

The 18 participating companies at Investor Day were Advance Cleantech, Coinify, DecoSlide, Hello World Mobile, Innogie, iposen.dk, KAPPO!, Lendino, Magick, Make-it-move, Navidest Solutions, Penneo, Shevana, Siterex, Teleskin, and Yaneeda.

The companies were judged on a variety of criteria including their business opportunities, team, recent performance, growth potential and competitive advantages. The winners were selected by the audience through an online vote.

Picture of the Investor Day Winners. Best Company: Penneo. Best Presentations: Magick & Conify (tied)

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Eliten skal få Danmark ud af krisen

2014-06-14

Danmark bruger hvert år godt en milliard kroner på at hjælpe danskere, der vil etablere og starte virksomhed. Iværksættere som vi gerne skulle leve af i fremtiden. Alligevel kigger ender under en halv procent af dem med at vokse, mens mange af de ambitiøse iværksættere kigger ud over landets grænser. Væk med lighedsmageriet, lyder opråbet.

I en lille taglejlighed i en sidegade til Strøget sidder ti unge IT-supportere i 20erne. Fysisk er der ikke ret meget plads, men mentalt er der højt til loftet.

»Vi kræver meget af folk. Men til gengæld giver vi dem også masser af anerkendelse. Hårdt arbejde er hos os noget, der giver prestige og ikke kun kroner i kassen. Følelsen af at kunne gøre en forskel er jo vigtig for alle mennesker.«

Ordene kommer fra 31-årige Toke Kruse. For ikke mange år siden var han én af mange andre studerende på CBS, der havde udsigt til et godt og trygt lønmodtagerliv med masser af ferie og gode pensionsordninger. I stedet har han valgt en vej med mere arbejde og langt højere økonomisk usikkerhed.

»Lysten til at skabe noget og få anerkendelse har nok ligget i mig lige siden en eksamen i 9. klasse, hvor jeg opdagede, at jeg kunne få gode karakterer ved at gøre en indsats,« siger Toke Kruse, der ikke ligner en klassisk CBS-student med sit lange, røde skæg og løse trøje. Han er en ilter type, fornemmer man. Ikke én, der var god til at sidde stille på skolebænken. Men derfor kan man alligevel nå langt. I dag er Toke Kruse direktør i virksomheden Billy’s Billing, som sælger online-regnskabsprogrammer til andre små virksomheder. Virksomheden har en omsætning på fem mio. kr. og 17 ansatte – alle med små portrætbilleder på væggen, for alle skal »føle sig som direktører«, som han siger.Han er iværksætter med vækstambitioner – én af de eftertragtede, der er med til at skabe de job, Danmark gerne skulle leve af i fremtiden. Problemet er bare, at Toke Kruse og forretningspartneren, Sebastian Seilund, planlægger at udvide virksomheden i USA. De ansatte i Danmark er alene tiltænkt får en supportfunktion.

»USA har en helt anden tilgang til det at etablere virksomhed. De private investorer tør satse langt større beløb på nye virksomheder, men de er nok også hårdere i deres udvælgelse. Herhjemme er vi på et helt andet stadie, hvor politikerne ser iværksætteri som en nødløsning, hvis man ikke kan få et job,« forklarer den 31-årige iværksætter, som nu bor i San Francisco sammen med Sebastian Seilund.

Lad os få flere “rige svin”

De er langt fra de eneste danske iværksættere i udlandet. I sidste måned blev den danske iværksætter Mikkel Svanes virksomhed Zendesk børsnoteret i USA med en omsætning på 72 mio. dollar sidste år. Virksomheden tog turen over Atlanten efter to år, og direktøren har tidligere fortalt, at hans succes skyldes, at han forlod sit fædreland i tide.

Og det er et problem, hvis for mange af hans slags følger efter. For iværksætterne med ambitioner er dem, der skal være med til at vække Danmark af sin vækstmæssige søvn. Nye virksomheder skal op og konkurrere med de store, så Danmark kan øge produktiviteten og dermed skabe flere arbejdspladser. Den slags entreprenante danskere er der alt for få af, selv om Danmark er et af de lande, hvor det er lettest at etablere en virksomhed. Både kommuner og staten stiller talrige rådgivningsfunktioner til rådighed gratis, og danskerne opretter årligt omkring 18.000 virksomheder, hvilket svarer nogenlunde til andelen af nye virksomheder i eksempelvis USA i forhold til befolkningens størrelse. Alligevel bliver virksomhederne ikke store. Under en halv procent af de virksomheder, der blev etableret i 2005, var fem år efter nået op i kategorien vækst-iværksættere ifølge Erhvervsstyrelsens tal, og Danmark har her en bundplacering i OECD. Skal det offentlige så betale for endnu mere iværksætterrådgivning? Nej, lyder svaret i en rundspørge, Berlingske Research har foretaget blandt knap 500 IT-iværksættere. 67 procent har ikke gjort brug af den offentlige rådgivning, som findes hos eksempelvis kommunernes erhvervsservice og de fem Væksthuse. Årsagerne er blandt andet, at iværksætterne ikke har haft behovet, at de frygter bureaukrati, at de har dårlige erfaringer med de offentlige konsulenter, eller at de ganske enkelt ikke har haft ambitioner.

Én af dem, IT-konsulent Marianne Steen, der selv har masser af vækstambitioner, har efter at have gjort brug af et offentligt drevet kontorhotel, besluttet sig for at klare tingene selv fremover.

»Der var bare en anden kultur. Intentionerne med projektet var jo gode, og der var intet i vejen med de ansatte, men de rammer, de arbejdede under, var vidt forskellige fra iværksætternes. Som iværksætter har man ikke brug for at få en lejekontrakt på 36 sider eller at vente i ugevis på at få sit depositum, fordi en medarbejder skal afspadsere, så hun ikke arbejder mere end 37 timer om ugen. Det er en systemtankegang, man som iværksætter slet ikke er en del af,« siger Marianne Steen.

Toke Kruse er heller ikke i tvivl. »Jeg kunne aldrig drømme om at gå ned til en konsulent i kommunen. Hvordan skal offentlige rådgivere, som måske ikke selv har haft en virksomhed, skabe flere dygtige iværksættere? Det, vi har brug for, er mere risikovillig kapital til de dygtigste, og her har vi ikke oplevet de offentlige muligheder som gode nok,« siger han. Kunne det ikke være, fordi de offentlige långivere har vurderet, at jeres forretning ikke var god nok?

»Det, vi har brug for, er mere risikovillig kapital til de dygtigste iværksættere i stedet for en masse små støtteordninger. Det er eliten, som skal få Danmark ud af krisen,« siger han.

Selv oprettede Toke Kruse sit første IT-firma, mens han stadig passede studierne i gymnasiet i slutningen af 90erne. Han bankede i bogstaveligste forstand på døren hos butikkerne på Strøget og spurgte, om ikke de havde brug for en hjemmeside. Med en mor som plejehjemsassistent og en far som økonomichef i Kongehuset var iværksættervejen ikke selvskrevet, og Toke Kruse begyndte først på CBS for at have noget at falde tilbage på. Men teorierne blegnede noget i forhold til arbejdet med hjemmesiderne, og han fik mere blod på tanden. I løbet af studierne fandt han derfor på at lave et firma, der skulle levere madpakker til travle børnefamilier. Da der ikke var andre, som kunne se idéen, endte Tokemed selv at lave madpakkerne.

»Jeg stod i Døgnnetto med ti fyldte indkøbskurve to dage om ugen, så jeg kunne smøre 300 madpakker . Det har været hårdt arbejde undervejs,« siger Toke Kruse, der ikke blev træt, men blot fik endnu mere gåpåmod.

Så selv om madpakkefirmaet ikke kunne løbe rundt på længere sigt – og han var begyndt på et nyt studium på CBS – varede det ikke længe, før han fik en ny idé. I 2010 stiftede han virksomheden Billy’s Billing sammen med sin kollega, Sebastian Seilund, som i dag står for IT-udviklingen. På det tidspunkt havde de to flere gange oplevet, hvor meget bøvl små virksomheder kan have med administration og økonomi, og derfor havde brug for et smartere system.

»Min far sagde, at det var en god idé, for det er vigtigt for alle iværksættere at forstå økonomien i en virksomhed. Men han rådede mig også til at gøre min kandidatuddannelse færdig først,« forklarer Toke Kruse, der tog sin uddannelse på et komprimeret år ved at betale for en stor del af studiet selv og derefter åbnede Billy’s Billing.

Er den milliard, som Danmark årligt bruger på at hjælpe iværksættere og små virksomheder, så helt spildt? Nej, lyder det fra adjungeret professor på CBS og mangeårig kender af iværksættermiljøet i Danmark, Søren Hougaard. BME BRØD MED INDRYK: Pengene skal fordeles til de dygtigste i stedet for at blive spredt ud over alle. Problemet, mener Søren Hougaard, bunder i, at vi har forsøgt at skabe en iværksætterkultur ud fra et lighedsideal, hvor ressourcerne skal fordeles ens blandt alle. Som det også sker i eksempelvis beskæftigelsessystemet, som regeringen nu er i gang med at reformere.

»Den tankegang betyder desværre, at vi ender med et kludetæppe af forskellige ordninger, som ikke formår at gøre en forskel for de rigtigt gode iværksættere. I stedet bør vi rydde op og lave nogle færre, men langt mere ambitiøse og målrettede tilbud. Problemet med det er selvfølgelig, at det i Danmark er meget svært at sige, at nogle er bedre end andre. Hvis man laver en parallel til sportens verden, kan vi se, at vi kommer til tops i de sportsgrene, hvor vi tør lave eliteprogrammer og benhårdt udvælger de dygtigste. Men på mange andre områder er det et tabu at bruge penge på eliten,« siger han »Det er jo ikke sådan, at de nuværende ordninger skader nogle, og jeg mener også, at det offentlige har været med til at løsne op på kapitalmarkedet, så iværksætterne har fået bedre adgang til kapital. Men vi får bare ikke vækst for pengene. Det kræver, at vi er mere elitære i vores tilgang.«

Søren Hougaard peger på ét halv-offentligt finansieret iværksætterprogram, som, han mener, udgør en undtagelse, det såkaldte Accelerace-program. Programmet skal hjælpe iværksættere i vækst, men kriterierne for at deltage og dermed også få finansiering er hårde, og kun 25 ud af 200 slipper årligt gennem nåleøjet. Bestyrelsesformand i Accelerace, Jørgen Bardenfleth, som er tidligere direktør i Microsoft, lægger ikke skjul på, at programmet, som nu har kørt i fem år, satser benhårdt på de dygtigste.

»Alle er enige om, at væksten skal komme fra nye virksomheder, for det er dem, der skaber job. Og her måtte vi bare erkende, at Danmark ikke ligefrem vandt nogen guldmedaljer,« siger Jørgen Bardenfleth og uddyber: »Mange serie-iværksættere mener, at det offentlige helt skal afholde sig fra at bruge penge på iværksættere. Det mener jeg nu godt, at vi kan. Men på samme måde som Norge tiltrækker verdens bedste skiløbere, fordi de satser benhårdt på at udvikle de dygtigste, skal vi også kunne tiltrække de bedste til Danmark inden for iværksætteri. Team Danmark opstod, fordi vi ikke opnåede tilstrækkelige resultater. Vi har også brug for elitær træning til iværksætterne.«

Ser man på de iværksættere, som har været igennem Accelerace, er resultaterne svære at se bort fra. Før de blev en del af programmet, var iværksætterne vurderet til at være omkring 400 millioner kroner værd i alt. I dag er virksomhedernes værdi steget til 1,38 milliarder, og de har samlet set skabt 766 nye job.

Men hvorfor hjælpe dem, der godt kan selv, i stedet for at sikre, at kræfterne bliver brugt på dem, der skal have hjælp til at komme op i omdrejninger?

Fordi de ellers søger andre steder hen, hvor vækstmulighederne er bedre, lyder svaret fra Toke Kruse.

»Det er klart, at hvis man har nået en alder, hvor man måske har stiftet familie og føler sig mere afhængig af sit danske netværk, er det sværere at rykke teltpælene op og rejse ud. Men er man single, som Sebastian og jeg var, er der ingen tvivl om, at man rejser,« siger han.Hvorfor så bruge tid  og kræfter på samfunds­debatten om iværksættere i Danmark?

»Jeg kunne jo godt være ligeglad og tænke, at nu har vi vores på det tørre i USA. Men jeg føler et ansvar for at hjælpe Danmark med at blive bedre, for vi har alle muligheder for at blive det.«

Kilde: http://www.b.dk/nationalt/eliten-skal-faa-danmark-ud-af-krisen

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Teleskin wins Next Step Challenge and Europe’s biggest entrepreneur prize

2014-06-12

Eight start-ups reached the final of the Accelerace partner project The Next Step Challenge competition with their own unique business idea. The winner was the Serbian company Teleskin who was presented with the biggest entrepreneur prize in Europe of 250,000 euro by HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark.

Teleskin combines digital technology and medical knowledge in an innovative way. Their digital solution allows users to take photos of their moles and skin lesions which are sent to evaluation by a physician through the Teleskin app and digital platform. The user gets an answer within 24 hours as to whether the moles or skin lesions are benign or not.

Prior to the Next Step Challenge award show the eight entrepreneurs completed a 5-month entrepreneurship course in Esbjerg in Denmark. Along the way, the companies developed their ideas and products. Originally 130 entrepreneurial companies applied to participate in the competition. During the process the 130 companies was narrowed down to the eight start-up companies that participated in the final. Next Step Challenge is based on collaboration between SE, the business accelerator Accelerace and The Region of Southern Denmark. The eight aspiring companies are from all around the globe: USA, Serbia, Denmark and Chile.

The companies were all judged on a variety of criteria: Their business opportunities, team skills, the company’s performance over the last 5 months, growth potential and how effectively they will use the prize money.

A new business concept that solves a major problem in the global market
Teleskin was awarded the Next Step Challenge grand prize of 250,000 euro. Teleskin’s mission of saving lives through their innovative e-health solution stood out. Also, Teleskin worked extremely dedicated and focused in cooperation with the Danish experts. Their product combines digital technology with medical know-how, and they solve a major problem in the global market.

Last but not least, Teleskin’s team is characterized by a high professional standard which includes doctors and medical experts and they also have strong expertise within their field. This was highlighted as strong base to build on to achieve future success. The prize of 250,000 euro will help the company going forward towards further growth and new developments.

About Next Step Challenge
Next Step Challenge is Europe’s most ambitious entrepreneurship program, which has now reached the finish line of the first generation of the competition. Next Step Challenge is based on the cooperation between SE, the business accelerator Accelerace and The Region of Southern Denmark. Over the past five months the 8 companies have worked hard to develop their unique business ideas in smart energy and digitization, with the sole aim to sharpen their business model towards their respective markets. The companies cover a wide spectra where intelligent energy solutions, an online homework app, activity apps, telemedicine, etc. are among the participants’ ideas. Read more at www.nextstepchallenge.com

Facts:
• During the process, the participating companies has been housed in the Next Step City in Esbjerg in Denmark.
• The winning company received a prize of 250,000 euro.
• All business ideas have been based in digitization, intelligent energy and telemedicine.
• Next Step City is located in Esbjerg in Denmark, where participants can take advantage of the region’s fast fiber network, and South Jutland is one of the regions in Europe with the largest coverage of fiber broadband.
• In Esbjerg competing companies had the opportunity to test their technology, customers, etc. one of the world’s most advanced digital infrastructures and had assigned mentors from the business community in Denmark and international experts, and the possibility working intensively with a personal coach.

The participating companies:
E- Health: Teleskin (Serbia) Smart Energy: Aquicore (USA) and Innogie (Denmark)
Digitalization: Kappo (Chile), Glamping Hub (USA), Hello World Mobile (Denmark), Lendino (Denmark), Tutee (Denmark).

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OpenAxel launches the first open acceleration platform in Europe

2014-05-14

Openaxel (Opening Acceleration across Europe) launches the first open acceleration platform in Europe gathering new acceleration services, creating European-level visibility and access to investors. The platform provides a unique opportunity for startups and SME’s with ambitions for European growth.

Openaxel launches its open acceleration platform to promote growth for accelerators and startups at a European level

Openaxel (Opening Acceleration across Europe) launches the first open acceleration platform in Europe gathering new acceleration services, creating European-level visibility and access to investors. The platform provides a unique opportunity for startups and SME’s with ambitions for European growth.

With the financial support of the European Commission, a consortium composed of, among others, three of the major accelerators of the entrepreneurial ecosystem (Accelerace, Wayra and AppCampus) will nurture an Open Acceleration ecosystem in order to encourage collaboration between European accelerators.

“After analyzing that most operate locally and do not have a European vision, we want to find out who are the most innovative in terms of the services they offer” say its representatives.

Unique opportunity for startups
This new platform provides a unique opportunity for startups and SMEs in the ICT sector, as it will help them grow internationally offering new acceleration services, European-level visibility and access to new investors and to best mentors.

In addition to the Web platform, Openaxel will seek out the best entrepreneurial talent in Europe through two startup competitions (one in 2014 and one in 2015) to select the 60 most promising startups in Europe (30 yearly). The 30 selected startups will receive acceleration services and 9 winners out of them will receive additional support, including world class coaching and mentoring from top level executives from global corporations, offers from world class technological partners and a trip to Silicon Valley in California, where they will come into contact with international investors and successful entrepreneurs.

 “Europe has seen a boost in digital entrepreneurship in recent years and Openaxel is born with the guarantee that it will bring together the best, and get from them the best possible performance combining talent with a world class advice” say its representatives.

Openaxel is one of the projects funded by the EU under the Startup Europe initiative to support ICT companies in accelerating their business growth through internationalization and cross-border financing. The project is carried out by a consortium composed of 8 partners (leading accelerators, institutional entities, and specialized innovation consulting firms) with huge international exposure and coming from 6 European countries:

– Accelerace

– Wayra
– AppCampus
– DigitalEurope
– Econet
– Opinno
– IVSZ
– FundingBox

For more information about OPENAXEL please visit http://www.openaxel.com.

About Accelerace

Acceleraceis partner in Openaxel and Scandinavia’s leading start-up accelerator that helps new businesses make the most of their potential nationally and internationally. With a team of experienced entrepreneurs and business developers, Accelerace offers customized expertise, investment, and network to help start-ups succeed through a 5-month customer driven and operational program. At the same time Accelerace are dedicated to developing and sharing knowledge on best practice in entrepreneurship. Since 2008 Accelerace have spotted, trained and invested in more than 200 start-ups and spin-off companies, which has generated more than 400 jobs. The start-up survival rate since 2008 is more than 94 %. Accelerace are also partner in start-up projects such as The Commercialize project, Next Step Challenge, Launchpad Denmark, Entrepreneurial Learning Lab (EL2), Welfare Tech Invest, Nupark Accelerace Invest and Nordic High Growth. Accelerace has 6 Danish offices. For more information visit www.accelerace.org or contact Accelerace by telephone (0045) 39 17 94 04 or email: info@accelerace.dk

About Openaxel

OpenAxel stands for “Opening Acceleration across Europe”. It is a project financed by the European Commission that aims to map all the acceleration services delivered to startups across Europe. By mapping these services a cooperative, systemic and systematic grid will be established, increasing collaboration between different stakeholders at a European level. Those acceleration services, delivered by a wide range of providers, will be easily accessible to entrepreneurs through OpenAxel ́s online platform. Additionally, two big contests will be held throughout the project execution with the objective of detecting and promoting European best talent (30 most promising startups in each contest). The consortium that manages the project is composed of different players in the ecosystem, including three of the biggest global accelerators worldwide: Accelerace, AppCampus and Wayra. The project will be reinforced by the capillarity and visibility among the ICT industry provided by Digital Europe and IVSZ, and Econet ́s and Opinno ́s international connections and expertise in dealing with European projects. For more information visit www.openaxel.com

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Vi vælger vinderne!

2014-05-08

Forskerbyen Symbion går målrettet efter at finde de iværksættere inden for især IT, der kan vokse sig store og skabe arbejdspladser – og øge overlevelseschancerne i de første svære år. Indtil nu er det blevet til over 750 job, og ni ud af ti af de nye virksomheder er stadig i live.

De pakker det ikke på nogen måde ind: »Vi arbejder med eliteiværksætterne. Har de ild i øjnene og vil gå gennem liv og død for deres ideer?«

Hvis svaret er »ja«, kan de vente fuld opbakning fra Jørgen Bardenfleth og Peter Torstensen. De er to erfarne rotter i den danske iværksætterbranche og kan – som henholdsvis bestyrelsesformand og administrerende direktør for både forskerparken Symbion og dens udviklingsprogram Accelerace – stille med præcis den opbakning, der skal til for at løfte de gode ideer op til at blive rigtige produkter med indtjenings- og eksportmuligheder.

Det kan over 200 iværksættervirksomheder bekræfte.

Udvælges ligesom sportsstjernerne

Accelerace, som bestyrelsesformand Jørgen Bardenfleth uden blusel kalder »en af de fremmeste inkubatorer i Skandinavien«, kan nemlig levere husly, rådgivning og kapital, så iværksætterne kan få lov til at blomstre og udvikle sig.

Hvis de ellers slipper gennem nåleøjet.

Hvert halve år udvælges 25 iværksættervirksomheder blandt omkring 200 ansøgere, der herefter kan få mikrofinansiering på 250.000-500.000 kroner som lån og optrænes gennem seks måneder, inden de – som »rigtige« sportsstjerner – får mulighed for at blive finansieret med to-fem millioner kroner, når fem-syv af de 25 udvælges som dem, det er værd at satse på.

»Det er vigtigt, at der er mange med i opløbet. Ellers kan vi ikke finde de bedste,« siger Jørgen Bardenfleth.

Han har også noget at have sin umiddelbare kækhed i. Af de 200 selskaber inden for IT, bio- og velfærdsteknologi og smart energi, som Accelerace har arbejdet med, er de 93,4 procent stadig i live. Kun 13 er gået ned. Før de kom til Accelerace, var de 409 millioner kroner værd tilsammen. I dag vurderes de til 1,38 milliarder kroner, og de har skabt 766 nye job.

»I gennemsnit har de fem-ti ansatte. Vi vil helst have dem, der har fået de første erfaringer forinden. Så skal vi flytte dem, så de kan skalere forretningen. Men i løbet af de næste seks måneder skal de have et fuldt produkt, der kan sendes på markedet. Rigtig mange grundlægges i Danmark, men antallet af vækstvirksomheder er mere beskedent. Antallet af folk, der virkelig har prøvet at skalere en virksomhed, er begrænset, og det vil vi træne dem op til,« siger Peter Torstensen.

75-100 mio. kr. er klar til investering

Bedst kendt af mange af Acceleraces iværksættere er nok det i dag syv år gamle Trustpilot, der bruges verden over, hvor folk lægger brugeranmeldelser ind, som andre kan se og lære af. De begyndte fem mand høj, og i dag er de tæt på 180 ansatte. Andre vil kende Freetrailer, når de står i IKEA og mangler plads til de indkøbte varer.

»Vi vil gerne have en superelitær tilgang, for jo flere eliteiværksættere der er, desto flere har lyst til at være her. Hvis man er rigtig dygtig, vil man arbejde sammen med de dygtigste. Danmark har virkelig underprioriteret dyrkning af eliten. Masser af initiativer hjælper iværksættere i bredden. Vi vil være for opstartsvirksomheder, hvad Team Danmark er for topatleter,« siger Peter Torstensen.

Accelerace begyndte for syv år siden. Hele finansieringen kom dengang fra det offentlige, og i dag er den halvt offentlig, halvt privat. Målet er at være 100 procent privat om nogle år. 250 millioner kroner – heraf 75-100 millioner kroner i frie midler – er der til at foretage investeringer med.

Skal helst være gået ned to gange…

»Investeringsklimaet bliver bedre og bedre, men investorerne er også blevet stadigt klogere efter f.eks. IT-boblen. For otte år siden kunne man investere på en drøm, i dag kræver det konkrete beviser. Vor vigtigste opgave er at skaffe vore virksomheder disse beviser,« siger Peter Torstensen, der selv har været med i ni år og og – som 80 procent af de ansatte – selv har været iværksætter … »og helst er gået ned to gange«.

Så har man nemlig lært lektien og kan bidrage til, at andre ikke behøver at gentage fadæserne.

Accelerace har i alt 60 ansatte, hvoraf de 35 rådgiver og arbejder med finansiering af opstartsvirksomheder. 20 sidder i Symbion på Fruebjergvej nær Ryparken Station i København, de øvrige på tre adresser i hovedstadsområdet samt i Odense, Vejle, Esbjerg, Aarhus og Holstebro.

Og så er der internationale partnere i Estland, Letland, Sverige, Norge og Storbritannien – med Tyskland som den næste på ønskelisten.

Accelerace går efter fire hovedområder: IT-software (ikke hardware) med handelsplatforme à la eBay, mobilapplikationer og software til erhvervsbrug; bio- og velfærdsteknologi heriblandt diagnosticeringsmetoder, smart energi, hvor teknologi kan ændre forbrugernes adfærd og spare på energien og fysiske industriprodukter til både forbrugere og virksomheder. IT fylder omkring halvdelen og bio- og velværdsteknologi en fjerdedel.

Omkring 25 pct. af lejerne skiftes ud hvert år, og iværksætterne bliver i gennemsnit fire år, før de rykker videre ud i virkeligheden. Accelerace følger de udvalgte tæt med ugentlige besøg og samler viden i en database, der skal blive verdens førende om iværksættererfaringer, så faldgruberne undgås.

»Vi tror på, at man kan lære iværksætteri. Der er enorme risici i tidlige investeringer og lærepenge, så det er vigtigt, at det offentlige her er med til at tage investeringerne, når det skal afklares, om ideerne holder,« siger Peter Torstensen.

 

Kilde: http://www.business.dk/digital/vi-vaelger-vinderne

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For tidlig startkapital kan være en hæmsko

2014-03-19

Venturekapital. Investeringsrådgivere råder ofte iværksætterne til at finde investorer i en fart. Men kapitalindsprøjtningen kan ifølge flere kilder hurtigt udgøre en risiko for innovative virksomheder.

Lav en prototype, udform en forretningsmodel og find nogle investorer. Sådan lyder mantraet fra mange investeringsrådgivere, der råder iværksætterne til at komme hurtigt ud af starthullerne og få investorer med om bord. Men tidlig kapital øger risikoen for, at det går galt, mener Peter Torstensen, der er i direktør i Accelerace og til daglig hjælper danske opstartsvirksomheder.

»Alle taler om, at det eneste, man mangler her i verden, er penge til iværksætteri. Og det er klart, at det fører til et fokus hos virksomhederne på, at hvis man bare får penge, kommer man til at lykkes. Men så enkelt er det ikke,« siger han og uddyber:

»Når man får en pose penge, er der krav om, at man bruger dem. Man ansætter medarbejdere og udvikler virksomheden. Men hvis man så ikke øger indtjeningen tilsvarende, og det kan der være mange årsager til, at man ikke gør, når man er en ny virksomhed, er der en risiko for, at man går konkurs.«

Torben Bager, professor og direktør i IDEA, et kompetencecenter for iværksætteri ved Syddansk Universitet, er enig i Peter Torstensens betragtninger.

»Det er interessant, at han vender den lidt på hovedet. Det normale argument er, at vi skal have mere venturekapital. Men han har fat i den lange ende, når det kommer til den mere komplekse del af virksomhederne,« siger Torben Bager.

Jannick Nytoft, direktør i DCVA, brancheforeningen for venture- og kapitalfonde, nikker genkendende til pointen, men understreger, at det er en kompleks balancegang at vurdere, hvornår virksomheder har behov for kapital:

»Jo tidligere en virksomhed får decideret vækstkapital fra en investor, desto større vil risikoen, potentialet og kravene til virksomheden være. Men det er jo meget situationsbestemt, hvornår det er vigtigt med ny kapital. For nogle typer virksomheder handler det om at erobre verden hurtigt, ellers erobrer en anden den. For andre kan det være fint først at bygge virksomheden op.«

Innovativ usikkerhed
Det er ofte de innovative virksomheder, der ikke ligner nogen, der allerede er på markedet, der har størst behov for risikovillig kapital, fordi usikkerheden er stor. Omvendt er det ifølge Torben Bager ofte her, behovet for at gå roligt frem er størst.

»Inden for de her områder skal man lade sig blive klogere og mærke efter på markedet. Man skal bevæge sig med forsigtighed og eksperimentere med blik for, at det kan være nødvendigt at gå nye veje,« siger han. Han understreger, at selv om alle har en fælles interesse i, at virksomhederne får succes, kan det stadig være vigtigt for iværksætterne at tage sig god tid til forberedelsesfasen.

»For mange penge om bord kan låse en virksomhed fast på ét spor. Selv om  investorerne siger, at de investerer i udvikling, kigger de også på afkast og exitmuligheder. De tager styringen over en vis del af processen, og det
eksperimenterende kan lidt gå fløjten.«

Store forventninger
Ifølge Peter Torstensen fra Accelerace er det netop investorernes forventninger til hurtig vækst, der øger risikoen for virksomheden. Han påpeger, at det kun er omkring en tiendedel af de virksomheder, der rejser tidlig kapital, som får succes.

»Nogle gange bliver man presset ud i at gøre nogle ting, man måske ikke selv synes
er sjovt, for nu har man fået nogle penge, og nu er der naturligt nok nogle forventninger. Investeringerne sætter et pres på, at man skal gøre noget mere og øge omkostningerne, selv om det måske ikke er tiden til det. Og det øger risikoen,« siger han.

Peter Torstensen mener ikke, virksomhederne helt skal afholde sig fra at rejse penge. De skal bare overveje tidspunktet og vente, til de har nogle beviser for, at forretningsplanen fungerer i praksis. Det kan give pote på flere planer.

»De her tanker er i mine øjne ikke ret kontroversielle, det er faktisk en helt gammeldags måde at tænke forretning på. At sætte tæring efter næring og bevise, at forretningen virker, ved at der er nogen, der vil betale for varen. På den måde er man løbende klar over, om man bruger sine penge på en fornuftig måde. Og når man har beviser, får man også en bedre vurdering af venturefondene, og man kan sælge sin andel for en større pose penge,« siger han.

Fakta Venturekapital

  • Iværksættervirksomheder, som modtager
    kapital fra ventureinvestorer, vil
    typisk have behov for forskellige typer
    investeringer hen over de forskellige
    stadier i virksomhedens udvikling.
  • For hver af virksomhedens udviklingsstadier
    findes en tilhørende finansieringsfase.
    Venturekapital dækker den
    finansiering, der sker tidligt i virksomhedens
    liv, eksempelvis i udviklingsfasen
    eller i den tidlige vækstfase.
  • Venturekapital kan eksempelvis være
    pre-seed, seed eller start-up, som virksomhederne
    bruger fra de helt tidlige
    forsknings- og udviklingsfaser og frem
    mod den tidlige og vedvarende vækst.
  • Venturekapital bliver typisk tilbudt af
    innovationsmiljøer, ventureselskaber,
    private »business angels« eller statens
    finansieringsfond, Vækstfonden.
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Fra hurtig nedtur til langsom optur

2014-03-19

Opstart. Markus Priess har prøvet at vokse hurtigt med en virksomhed, og han har prøvet at gå konkurs. Da han startede forfra med Autoparts24, var han tvunget til at vokse langsomt, og i dag tøver han med at få investorer med om bord.

Fra den ene yderlighed til den anden. I 00ernes opsving kastede Markus Priess sig ud i et eventyr med sit firma, Byens Autogenbrug. Han flyttede fra København til Ishøj, åbnede en ny filial i Herlev og etablerede en international internethandel. I  2008 gik han konkurs.

»Jeg byggede 5.000 kvadratmeter kontorer og nyt lager, men selv om det kun lå få kilometer væk fra det gamle, mistede vi en tredjedel af kunderne. Og når man har så store omkostninger, som vi pludselig havde opbygget, så går det altså meget hurtigt ned ad bakke,« siger Markus Priess.

I dag er han direktør i Autoparts24, der ligesom Markus Priess’ gamle virksomhed handler med brugte reservedele. Men selv om branchen er den samme, har opstarten været en helt anden.

»Det høje omkostningsniveau var med til at slå min virksomhed ihjel, og jeg lærte simpelthen, at jeg skulle gå i den helt anden grøft. I den virksomhed, jeg har nu, er jeg gået langsomt frem og har holdt omkostningerne på et minimum,« siger Markus Priess, der i dag udelukkende formidler kontakt mellem købere og sælgere af brugte reservedele og derfor har hele sin forretning på computeren.

Tvunget til organisk vækst
At Autoparts24 er vokset langsomt skyldes mere nød end lyst. Da Markus Priess  etablerede virksomheden, sad han tilbage med en så stor personlig gæld, at banken lukkede kassen helt i.

»Jeg var helt desperat. Jeg vidste ikke engang, hvordan jeg skulle betale mine regninger, eller om vi kunne beholde vores hus. Var der kommet en investor på det tidspunkt, havde han kunnet få en stor bid for få penge,« siger han.

Der kom dog ikke nogen investorer, og Markus Priess måtte tage det lange, seje træk. I dag har han en solid virksomhed og kan igen sove uden sovepiller.

»Set i bakspejlet har der været rigtig mange fordele ved at vokse langsomt. Jeg har kunnet lære løbende og gå i forkerte retninger, uden det havde den helt store betydning. Jeg havde jo ikke enorme beløb at investere, og når du vokser langsomt, har du hele tiden overblikket. Når du får penge ind, kan du vækste hurtigere, men der er også en risiko for at begå store fejl,« siger Markus Priess.

Investorer på hold
I sommer fik Ebay øjnene op for Markus Priess’ internationale handel med reservedele og startede et samarbejde med Autoparts24. Det har firedoblet omsætningen, og i dag står investorerne i kø.

»Det er jo en helt ekstrem situation. Jeg kommer fra et sted, hvor jeg ikke engang kunne få en kassekredit, og nu står der nogen, der vil investere et rimeligt stort millionbeløb,« siger han.

Han holder dog lidt igen, for han mener stadig, forretningsmodellen er så kompleks, at den skal udvikles mere:

»Jeg vil gerne vente til sommer, for så regner jeg med, at virksomheden er mere klar. Vi er stadig i gang med at lære, hvordan vi skal håndtere markedet, og der har det været rigtigt godt, at vi har haft tid og ro til at vokse langsomt og lære alle processerne. En investor ville have haft en forventning til, at vi voksede hurtigere.«

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New Nordic collaboration launches a cross-border Accelerator program for life science and medtech companies

2014-02-28

The project called Accelerace Life aims to develop an effective and cost-efficient cross-border high growth accelerator in the Nordic countries that propels promising life science SMEs into international markets to gain faster market access through a strong collaboration between the best Scandinavian incubators & accelerators.

On 17th of February 2014, a group of 7 strong incubators and accelerators in Scandinavia launched a shared joint Nordic Accelerator that place high growth SMEs within life science and medtech simultaneously in the four Scandinavian markets with all needed network, mentors, experts, elite training programs etc.

Peter Torstensen, CEO in Accelerace, says: “The creation of high growth companies have been high on the agenda of all European countries for many decades, but so far we have seen little concrete efforts towards collaborating on Nordic level to achieve such goals. By allowing for innovative entrepreneurs to access all Nordic markets from day 1 through a strong cross-border collaboration between national accelerators and incubators with valuable experiences and networks, we can immediately help Nordic entrepreneurs grow faster, better and stronger, both within the Nordic region and on export markets.”

Morten Mølgaard Jensen, CEO in COBIS, adds: ”Small home markets and similar challenges calls for closer Nordic collaboration to build stronger and more interlinked Nordic infrastructure for entrepreneurs. With the valuable support from Nordic Innovation, Accelerace Life will simultaneously strengthen the Nordic Ecosystem for high growth company creation by setting up a cross-border accelerator.”

The partners have now begun to identify and select potential promising life science SMEs in the Nordic countries that could benefit from the program. The participating companies will get access to practical, hands-on business development services, parallel market access to all Nordic countries, international funding and collaborations between life science SMEs and experts, facilities and investors in other Nordic regions.

The innovation needs of SMEs will drive the collaborations. Whether they are technological, commercial or financial, Accelerace Life will help to connect Nordic SMEs to a relevant expert or provider in the consortium network.

The partners behind the new program are Accelerace Management (DK), Copenhagen Bio Science Park (DK), STING (SE), Karolinska Institutet Innovations (SE), Lund Life Science Incubator (SE), Turku Science Park (FI) and Kjeller Innovasjon (NO). For more information, please visit the following websites:

For more information, please visit the following websites:

www.accelerace.dk
www.cobis.dk
www.lundlsi.se
www.stockholminnovation.com
www.kiinnovations.se
www.turkusciencepark.com
www.kjellerinnovasjon.no

Contact:

Accelerace Management:
Morten Heide, partner – phone: +45 2971 3979, mh@accelerace.dk

Copenhagen Bio Science Park:
Morten Mølgaard Jensen, CEO – phone: +45 3119 7311, mmj@cobis.dk

STING (Stockholm Innovation & Growth):
Olof Berglund, Business Coach Medtech – phone: +46 (0)706 35 98 15, olof.berglund@stockholminnovation.com

Karolinska Institutet Innovations:
Christian Krog-Jensen, Science and Business Development – phone: +46 (0)70-661 81 49, christian.krog-jensen@kiinnovations.se

Lund Life Science Incubator
Örjan Norberg, CEO – phone: +46 70 309 1868, orjan@lundlsi.se

Turku Science Park:
Tero Piispanen, Program Director – phone: +358 400 781 683, Tero.Piispanen@turkusciencepark.com

Kjeller Innovasjon:
Reidun Gangdal, project manager – phone: +47 907 51 791, rg@kjellerinnovasjon.no

LÆES MERE

Welcome to 28 new Accelerace startups

2014-01-23

We’re proud to introduce our 28 new startup stars:

We can’t wait to work with you!

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Hård dyst om millioner på kun 5 minutter

2014-01-17

Eksamen. Til det halvårlige Accelerace dyster en håndfuld mindre virksomheder med vækstpotentiale om pengemændene gunst. De har hver fem intense minutter til at overbevise investorerne.

Nogle øjeblikke er mere afgørende end andre. Sådan er det også, når Accelerace afholder sit halvårlige event i Carlsbergbyen i København – for her er det nemlig eksamensdag for 15 håbefulde små virksomheder.

Fælles for deltagerne er, at de har været igennem et forløb på seks måneder med rådgivning, der både har skærpet deres profil og forberedt dem på denne dag. Det er nu, de skal stille sig op foran omtrent 100 tilskuere, hvoraf en stor del er potentielle investorer, som leder efter lovende nye projekter, de kan kaste deres investormillioner i.

Rammen er en teatersal i Dansehallerne i Carlsbergbyen. Den er på størrelse med en stor gymnastiksal, og de store, sorte forhæng skal sløre, at væggene er af hård og rungende beton.

Række efter række af tilskuere har fundet sig til rette på stolerækkerne, mens der kigges ned mod scenen, som er badet i skarpt lys. Snakken går blandt de jakkesætklædte mænd og kvinder, og det handler om business: »Vi har haft nok at lave« bliver besvaret med »ja, der har været fart på« fra en sæderække bagved, inden begge bliver afbrudt af velkomsttalen fra Accelerace-chefen Peter Torstensen.

Det hele foregår på engelsk, og Peter Torstensen gør sit for at piske stemningen op. En af hans pointer er, at iværksætter- og vækstmiljøet i hans optik kan sammenlignes med sportsverdenen og dens betydning for samfundet.
Han nævner effekten af, at Danmark p.t. har den succesrige tennisspiller Caroline Wozniacki. »Jo flere stjerner, desto flere vælger at spille tennis,« konkluderer han.

Talen afløses hurtigt af første præsentation.

Morten Klank fra virksomheden Rushfiles træder op på scenen og lægger ud med en beskrivelse af sin virksomhed, markedet og muligheder. Tilhørerne er tavse og lytter intenst, mens han forklarer, hvorfor der er muligheder i at udbyde skybaseret datalagring.
Tallene triller ud over scenekanten: 24 partnere er allerede i hus med 5.600 brugere.
75 procent af aktørerne er lokale, og spillere som Amazon og Dropbox er meget mindre, end man skulle tro.
Punchlinen er, at han mangler to millioner euro, hvis den internationale satsning skal op i gear.

De fem minutter er gået på ingen tid.

Morten Klank forlader scenen med et smil, og klapsalverne er knap nok forbi, før næste pitch er i gang, og Christian Lund fra virksomheden Templafy taler. Hans programmer kan supplere udbydere som Microsofts og Googles kontorpakkeprogrammer, når det kommer til standardformularer – templates.

Christian Lund tvivler ikke på sit koncept. »Vi er overbeviste om, at vi kan snuppe førerpositionen. Det er der en eller anden, der kommer til at gøre inden for dette felt.
Det kan blive os,« siger han selvsikkert.
Christian Lund er mere beskeden end den forrige taler og søger blot 500.000 euro. Pitchen er lynhurtigt forbi, og han stormer ned fra scenen, mens klapsalverne stiger i intensitet.
Templafy-chefens håb er nu det samme, som de øvrige deltageres. Det er helt konkret, at der i næste pause står interesserede investorer i nabosalen ved de høje cafeborde, som vil høre mere.
Næste pitch går i gang, og vi er igen i computerskyen. Rikke Biehl fra Delogue går på scenen og forklarer speedsnakkende, at hendes system holder styr på den skov af informationer, der har det med at suse frem og tilbage mellem modetøjsdesignere og -producenter. Svedglimt fra hendes pande afslører, at temperaturen på scenen er på vej op – og givetvis også, at deltagerne føler sig under et vist pres.

Lars Nørgaard Bjørn og Inno Power tager over med det samme, da Rikke Biehl smilende forlader scenen. Nu er vi i en helt anden boldgade. Inno Power designer »smart« vejog gadebelysning, der bl.a. kan justere lysstyrke alt efter trafikmængden. Strømkilden kan være solceller. Fremtiden bliver billigere, miljørigtig og mere sikker for trafikanterne, hvis hans system bliver udbredt, lover han fra scenen – men der mangler fire friske millioner investorkroner.

Der er ingen garantier for, at Inno Powerchefen får held med sin satsning, men et blik på Accelerace-programmets score lover dog godt. Programmet har kørt siden 2008, og lige siden har over 200 projekter været under luppen, og af dem er 93 procent fortsat i drift i dag. Alt i alt har deltagerne i Accelerace altså en særdeles god sandsynlighed for en lovende fremtid – hvad end det lykkes for dem at få den afgørende samtale med en investor på pitching-dagen eller ej.

De to sidste deltagere inden midtvejspausen i Accelerace Investor Day gør sig klar til at indtage scenen. Første mand til at blive badet i spotlightene er Thomas Sugar fra Pinstriped.
Hans computerprogram lægger en professionelt udseende brugerflade hen over ens computers skrivebord. Han eksemplificerer på storskærmen med et billede af en computerskærm, der er stopfyldt med mapper og filer, og hvor baggrundsbilledet er en storsmilende, gråskægget fyr i orange vest.præsentation med at afsløre det rod, der præger ens arbejdsstation. Thomas Sugar søger én million euro.

Sidste pitch inden pausen er Allan Sønderskov fra Freetrailer. Teknikken driller ham og arrangørerne. Mens de febrilsk forsøger at få startet hans præsentationsprogram, kan tilskuerne på storskærmen nærstudere en to gange tre meter stor visning af Freetrailerchefens Google-kalender. »God reklame for forgængerens produkt«, lyder det kækt fra rækken bagved.

Da pitchen endelig kommer i gang, forstummer de smarte kommentarer. Allan Sønderskov har allerede bevist sit værd i Norden. Han udlåner trailere for kædekoncerner som IKEA og Bauhaus til kunder med transportbehov. Omsætningen nåede knap 20 millioner kroner i 2013. Nu mangler han kapital til den helt store tyske udrulning – nærmere betegnet 5,8 millioner danske kroner. Afslutningen af Freetrailers lidt kaotiske pitch markerer, at det er tid til midvejspausen.

Scenen og spotlightene bliver afløst af småsnak og seriøse miner omkring de høje borde i nabolokalet. Flere steder har Acceleracedeltagerne allerede besøg ved deres respektive borde.

En klokke, der ringer, afbryder dog seancen få minutter senere.

Stemmerne forstummer, og deltagerne sætter kursen tilbage mod teatersalen.

Næste runde i Accelerace Investor Day er i gang.

fakta

ACCELERACE-PROGRAMMET
● Begrebet »pitch« kommer fra marketingbranchen, hvor det dækker over den professionelle salgstale, man bruger til at overbevise kunderne.
● Accelerace-programmet startede i 2008. Lige siden har over 700 mindre virksomheder og startups været i kikkerten som kandidater, mens lidt over 200 endte med at blive en del af programmet.
● De deltagende virksomheder har indtil videre og samlet set tiltrukket sig 106 millioner euro i funding.
● Programmets finansiering kommer i dag både fra private aktører som fonde og fra offentlige fonde. Sidstnævnte både danske og europæiske.

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Budskabet er det vigtigste

2014-01-17

Startups. Det er ikke for sjov, at Acceleraces programforløb slutter af med en pitch. For det hele handler ikke bare om at tiltrække investeringer – det handler også om at lære sin egen virksomhed at kende.

Kerneformålet med Accelerace Investor Day, der løb af stablen onsdag, var at præsentere potentielle investorer for mindre virksomheder.
Men det er alligevel ikke alt, forklarer Acceleraces direktør Peter Torstensen.

I hans optik var dagen også kulminationen på et seksmåneders forløb, der har trimmet en håndfuld lovende startups til vækst, og som har gjort menneskene bag virksomhederne bevidste om, hvem de er, og hvad de kan. »Hvis du har styr på din forretning, så skal du simpelthen kunne præsentere det lynhurtigt. Du skal kunne fortælle, hvad er problemet, hvordan vi løser det, hvordan vi tjener penge på det, og hvordan kommer vi videre. Det handler i høj grad om at gøre sig klart, hvad ens budskab er,« siger han og tilføjer: »En god præsentation kan jo bruges over for såvel potentielle investorer som over for kunder, man er ude ved og til netværksarrangementer.

Man kan bruge det i mange sammenhænge. « Konceptet beskriver Peter Torstensen som »ærkeamerikansk«. Det er den klassiske elevatorsnak, hvor man formår at skabe interesse og udveksle visitkort på den tid, det tager at blive hejst fra første til femte sal. Accelerace-programmet var tidligere finansieret udelukkende af offentlige støttemidler.
I dag er det omtrent halvdelen, der kommer fra private aktører. De virksomheder, der kommer ind under Acceleraces vinger, kan benytte sig af 200 private rådgivningstimer, som skal være med til at gøre det klart for de typisk unge virksomhedsejere, hvad potentialet er, og hvordan de skal kæmpe for at leve op til det.

Når man kommer ind i programmet, har man allerede været igennem et nåleøje. Det er også i det lys, man skal se den høje overlevelsesrate, virksomhederne har i programmet.
Typisk er det kun omkring halvdelen af alle opstartsvirksomheder, der er operationelle efter tre år. For Accelerace-programmets vedkommende er det blot syv procent, der ikke eksisterer mere. Accelerace Investor Day er ikke kun den halvårlige eksamen for de deltagende virksomheder.

Det er også eksamen for selve programmet. »Det er klimaks på seks måneders arbejde,« siger Peter Torstensen, og giver deltagervirksomhederne efter de første seks pitches sin vurdering: »Langt de fleste gik godt. Men jeg er selvfølgelig enormt biased, på det punkt, så jeg synes da, at folk skal træne lidt mere. «

3 GODE TIP
● Fortæl nok til at det skaber interesse.
● Tal i billeder som folk kan forholde sig til.
● Gør det klart hvad behovet er, og hvad investoren får ud af det.
3 KLASSISKE FEJL
● Præsentationen bliver for teknisk.
● Det står uklart, om man savner investering eller en partner.
● Man glemmer at træne sin pitch.

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Accelerace: Vild Vækst i Øst

2013-06-11

For et år siden kom Graduateland under Accelerace’s vinger efter et forgæves forsøg et halvt år tidligere. – Første gang mente de, vi var umodne, fortæller en af Graduatelands ejere; Jens Reimer Olesen. – Et halvt år senere ansøgte vi igen, og kom med.

BÅÅÅT! En høj lyd fra et båthorn efterfulgt af vild jubel skærer sig gennem det åbne landskab under taget på syvende sal. Vi er hos Graduateland på Amager, hvor to håndfulde unge mennesker højlydt jubler over, at endnu en kunde har signed up. Kunden er en større dansk virksomhed, der kan se en fordel i at bruge Graduatelands portal til at finde de rigtige unge mennesker til et studiejob eller et ’rigtigt’ job.

Med i andet forsøg
For et år siden kom Graduateland under Accelerace’s vinger efter et forgæves forsøg et halvt år tidligere. – Første gang mente de, vi var umodne, fortæller en af Graduatelands ejere; Jens Reimer Olesen. – Et halvt år senere ansøgte vi igen, og kom med. På det tidspunkt var vi egentlig langt allerede. Vi var 15 og havde en millionomsætning plus et par tusind kunder. Vi havde faktisk ramt markedet, spørgsmålet for os var snarere, hvordan vi kunne få endnu flere kunder.
– Det koster, og det forpligter at være med i træningsforløbet, slår Jens Reimer Olesen fast. – Vi tog det virkelig seriøst. Det skal man. Jo mere man lægger i det, jo mere får man ud af det. Vi var tre, der var gennem de forskellige workshops med bl.a. salgspitch, go-to-market- og finansieringsstrategier og internationalisering, som er særligt vigtigt for os. Vi ville og vil stadig være store uden for Danmark – og Skandinavien. Vores dagsorden var blandt andet, hvordan vi kan lande på det tyske marked. Og her blev vi klædt virkelig godt på gennem laboratorieøvelser over flere timer, hvor vi fik insiderviden fra en repræsentant fra et tysk universitet og en iværksætter, der var nået rigtig langt i Tyskland. Et er vores egne forestillinger og den strategi, vi kan lægge ud fra den, noget helt andet er praksis i de enkelte lande.

Vækstkapital
Et forløb hos Accelerace slutter med en investordag, hvor iværksætterne præsenterer deres forretningsidé og potentiale. Her deltager mulige investorer, der kan være et potentielt match for de nye spirer. Kort tid efter fik Graduateland tilbud fra et par danske fonde, som de dog valgte at takke nej til, selv om tilbuddene selvfølgelig var smigrende, forklarer Jens Reimer Olesen. – Der er mange faktorer og juridiske spørgsmål at tage stilling til, og vi havde også forskellige opfattelser af, hvad vi var værd på det tidspunkt. Da vi et halvt års tid senere havde brug for vækstkapital, gik vi tilbage til Accelerace, for at høre, om de ville være med. En aftale kom på plads, de skød tre millioner ind, fordi de tror på, at vi kan leve op til de milepæle, de sætter op. Lige nu er det målet, at vi i løbet af det her halvår skal vækste med 100 procent. Og vi er allerede i hus. Det betyder dog ikke, at linjen til Accelerace er kold. Tværtimod. Et par gange om ugen er der forbindelse mellem Jens og konsulenten Jesper, der stædigt skubber på med krævende spørgsmål; hvor er I om tre år, om fem år – og hvor er det, I vil hen? Jens Reimer Olesen og kollegerne hele bordet rundt er udmærket klar over, at det er den slags puf, der hjælper med at holde liv i båthornet.

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