Future Park: The perfect stage for growing start-ups at DMEXCO

E-learning solutions, feedback culture and rapid prototyping are just a few of the start-up approaches that will be presented to potential business partners and customers on two days in Cologne.

Future Park: The perfect stage for growing start-ups at DMEXCO

“Our goal is to meet interested parties and customers who have recognized that technology itself is not decisive for change, but the people who will work with this technology,” says Arnd Wenzel, founder and managing director of easyclipr. The Dresden-based company develops explanatory films based on neuroscience findings. “We want to help people who are passionate about digital innovation and want to help their teams increase their innovative strength based on feedback from their employees, and fully exploit their creative potential,” says Jean Michel Diaz, co-founder of Echometer in Münster. He is convinced DMEXCO is the perfect place for this.

Robert Jänisch from IOX in Düsseldorf has a very similar view. The start-up has dedicated itself to rapid prototyping and is a “repeat offender” when it comes to DMEXCO. “We took part in DMEXCO last year and made valuable contacts for joint projects and cooperations,” says Jänisch in anticipation of the new edition in September. All three start-ups have registered for the Future Park at DMEXCO 2019. They are all driven by attracting increased awareness, new contacts and more customers.

There is an increasing demand for video-based digital learning

“Our customers come to us with a mountain of dry factual knowledge. We transform this into explanatory videos, interactive images and visual learning paths,” says psychologist and communication scientist Arnd Wenzel of easyclipr’s USP. Nine employees and a number of freelancers are now working on this. Wenzel and his team have developed their own method of emotional knowledge transfer in recent years. It is based on the latest findings in neuroscience.

In addition to producing explanatory media and e-learning solutions, the company advises its customers on how to implement digital learning. According to Wenzel, there is an increasing demand for simple, modular and video-based learning units. The next step is already planned: A separate learning platform is to be launched on the market next year.

How feedback culture is driving digital transformation

The Echometer team is tackling a similar challenge. The tool, which is intended to transfer the feedback culture in teams and projects from the agile environment into a continuous improvement process based on findings from psychological research and modern methods, is currently being used in several pilot projects. The declared goal is to retain talent in the company, tap its creative potential and drive digital transformation through continuous feedback. For example, department managers receive an overview including KPIs of the employee’s level of satisfaction, which in turn flows into process management.

The findings from the pilot projects will soon be transferred into a comprehensive SaaS solution. “We are also in contact with numerous agile coaches in order to better understand the deployment scenarios,” says co-founder Jean Michel Diaz. The idea for Echometer was born at the Founders Academy organized by the Founders Foundation in Bielefeld. It has been developed since February 2019 as a start-up spin-off of the University of Münster. Speaking about the company’s goals of attending DMEXCO, Diaz says, “We are delighted to be able to get in touch with even more people there, to inspire them with our feedback tool and thus help them develop innovative solutions.”

Step by step to an IoT solution with rapid prototyping

Number three in the group is IOX. With more than 20 employees, the young company creates intelligent and networked products in the field of Internet of Things, including solutions with artificial intelligence at IOX LAB. The lab helps implement IoT solutions. The company works with its customers to develop smart products from the idea to the functional prototype in just 30 days. Rapid design and rapid prototyping are made possible by a wide range of modular technologies – from sensors and microcontrollers to 3D printing and artificial intelligence. Following a successful prototype testing phase, IOX also offers to develop the prototype up to series production and accompany it throughout the entire implementation process.

“Since we will be present at this year’s DMEXCO with a speaker slot and a stand, we look forward to companies interested in prototyping, digitalization, IOT, RFID or Narrowband IOT coming to visit us and listen to our presentation,” says Robert Jänisch, who founded IOX in 2015 together with Andreas Bell.

After IOX initially focused on professional services, consulting and implementation, providing an answer to the customers’ question “How can I implement this and generate added value?” is currently more important. In order to provide initial assistance, IOX is also willing to take part in the risk, for example in the form of a revenue share. Or when it comes to operations, IOX initially assumes the costs for hardware and invoices them over time using software licenses. Jänisch explains that people often forget how much money has to be invested to introduce a new business model and platform. “50,000 euros is a lot of money for medium-sized companies. But you need 300,000 to 400,000 euros to set up a platform and ensure its operation for a while.”

The bottom line

The three start-ups have great expectations of their presence at DMEXCO. And that is justified from their perspective. With a lot of effort, skill and the ability to learn, they have developed their idea over the past years and months into companies that now have to assert themselves in the markets. Presenting the ideas to a larger audience is an important step for the young companies. With its international alignment and focus on digital business, DMEXCO is one of the best conceivable platforms in Europe for this purpose. From the start-ups’ point of view, the motto “Trust in you” also includes trust in DMEXCO’s attractiveness for the right decision-makers.