HANDELSBLATT AND MCKINSEY AWARD TOP INNOVATORS WITH THE SPARK AND BRING THEM TOGETHER WITH RENOWNED BUSINESS LEADER

The Spark provides drivers of the digital revolution with the chance to present themselves on the big stage. The perfect award for startups whose ideas have the potential to cause ground-breaking changes within industry. You will not only have the chance to present your ideas to a prominent jury and high-caliber guests but also get in touch with other proponents of the digital revolution.

This year we focused on companies within the field of artificial intelligence who offer an innovative, scalable concept and have been already successfully tested in a business context.

THE WINNERS 2017

On the 12th of October 2017 Handelsblatt and McKinsey honored the award winners of “The Spark” together with an invited audience comprising 200 guests from politics, business, and science. Ten finalists took part at the award ceremony at the Umspannwerk Alexanderplatz in Berlin and presented their innovations to the audience. You can find the video of the presentations on Handelsblatt Online. Following three left as the winner of “The Spark 2017”:

1. PEAT

Capsicum from Spain, a mango from Pacistan and an avocado from Peru. Our food is coming from farmers and companies all around the world. But not all products make it to our tables because 15-30 percent of all harvest fall victim to plant diseases or pests. For a small farmer this can be live threatening. The product Plantix wants to help. Farmer can take a picture of the contaminated plant with their smartphone. Via image recognition and with the help of a constantly increasing database Plantix recognizes automatically over 180 plant diseases and offers a recommendation for action. With the help of GPS data from the sent pictures Plantix recognizes spreading patterns of diseases and pests in real-time. The software can be integrated in every camera system with access to the internet. Monitoring systems in greenhouses, tractors, drones and agricultural robots can be equipped and can therefore guarantee better harvests.

PEAT
2. CARGONEXX

Thousands of trucks are on the roads of Europe and Germany on a daily basis. Logistic efforts are huge – but often vehicles are not used in an optimized way. Not all of them are fully loaded, not all of them reach their target location right in time and also prices for those journeys are often not transparent. This is where the self-learning algorithm of Cargonexx focuses on. Prices and cargo flows, also weather information, are analyzed on a constant basis. The self-learning algorithm calculates within seconds the latest price for the request of the freight forwarder. This price can be accepted with one click and Cargonexx takes over the responsibility for the delivery. Within their network of carrier Cargonexx selects the right partner. The best tour for the best price – even for part loads and without any risk for freight forwarder and carrier.

Cargonexx
3. SMACC

An invoice arrives at a company. It is opened, arranged, booked, released – a typical finance procedure which takes multiple days and costs companies on average 5 € per incoming invoice. If times are stressful and workload is high in the area of accounting and controlling things can get tight. The consequences are annoyed supplier or even reminder fees. But this will change due to SMACC. The artificial neural nets of SMACC revolutionize the internal finance process of companies. Invoices are recognized automatically, are allocated automatically to cost centers and made available for the digital release process. This technology offers liquidity management in real-time. With the help of monitored learning and speech processing more and more company specific tasks can be taken over. Creating transparency of liquidity and business development become possible on a daily basis.

SMACC

THE JURY SESSION 2017

Within our application process ten finalists were preselected. On the 18th of September those finalists introduced their innovation at the live pitches during the jury session. The winners were announced at the award ceremony on the 12th of October in Berlin.

OVERVIEW OF THE FINALISTS
© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
Cargonexx GmbH

Cargonexx GmbH developed an innovative, data-based business model which organizes trucking more efficiently for freight forwarders, carriers and transport companies.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart

Finalist: Max Lamelle / Fraugster Ltd.
Fraugster Ltd.

The software of Fraugster tackles online fraud in e-commerce with the help of an artificial intelligence engine which imitates the thinking process of a human analyst but is also scalable and has the speed of a machine.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
Gini GmbH

The real-time semantic analysis of Gini generates structured information out of unstructured documents – e.g. pictures of an invoice.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
octimine technologies GmbH

Octimine offers a software for the patent research and analysis which is fast, precise and user-friendly.

team image
PEAT

Plantix by PEAT recognizes plant diseases with the help of artificial intelligence and image recognition via smartphones and suggests treatment options.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
PRECIRE Technologies GmbH

askPRECIRE decodes written and spoken speech and makes precise statements about psychological parameters. By combining different effects it can create and deduct psychological typologies.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
Renumics GmbH

The simulation platform of Renumics analyzes design variations with less work effort, reduces licensing costs and provides product specific simulation tools.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
SMACC GmbH

The cloud-software application of SMACC offers full automation of operational finance processes in small and medium-sized businesses by using artificial intelligence.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
So1 GmbH

So1 offers a technology platform for brands and discounter based on artificial intelligence which targets customers with individual and effective discounts.

© Andy Ridder, The Spark - Der deutsche Digitalpreis - Jurysitzung im Max-Plank-Institut für intelligente Systeme Stuttgart
Starmind International AG

Starmind creates collective expertise within organizations through self-learning algorithms in order to increase human productivity.

Overview of the application process of The Spark:

  • APPLICATION

    Please apply for The Spark using our online application form.

  • preselection

    Applicants will be preselected based on the information given in their application.  Only the best applicants will be selected as finalists.

  • jury session

    On September 18th, the finalists will present their business to our high-caliber jury in live-pitches. This will be the basis for the jury’s selection of the winners.

  • award ceremony

    On October 12th, finalists will be presented at the grand award ceremony in Berlin. Then the winners will be revealed.

     

WHAT IS IN IT FOR YOU

As finalist or winner of The Spark- The German Digital Award you’ll gain many benefits:

…valuable contacts, a competent network and relevant insights

…a range of influence by presenting your company on stage and via our media

…an approved distinction to raise your reputation

THE SPARK ON HANDELSBLATT ONLINE

Please find all articles about The Spark – The German Digital Award here (German only).

AWARD CEREMONY 2016

We celebrated the winners of “The Spark – The German Digital Award” in Berlin on 6th  October 2016. The award ceremony took place at the Umspannwerk Alexanderplatz in Berlin. Handelsblatt and McKinsey honored the award winners of “The Spark – The German Digital Award” together with an invited audience comprising 160 guests from politics, business, and science.

In 2016 we have spent six months looking for the most suitable candidates for The Spark – The German Digital Award. We can proudly announce that we have found ten great finalists and three outstanding winners:

THE WINNERS 2016

The winners of The Spark – The German Digital Award 2016:
relayr, KONUX, and NavVis.

THE FINALISTS 2016

The finalists of The Spark – The German Digital Award 2016
iTiZZiMO, nextLAP, identPro, KONUX, Cassantec,
SemVox, gestigon, relayr, Re’flekt, and NavVis.

JURY SESSION 2016

The jury session of The Spark – The German Digital Award took place in Dusseldorf on 13th September 2016. All finalists had the opportunity to present their business ideas to the jury. The jury session was marked by innovation, enthusiasm, entrepreneurship, and intensive discussions.

INSIGHTS

Smart technologies, changing customer needs, and new competitors: Digitalization is disrupting the German economy. The content hub Digital at Scale from McKinsey on Handelsblatt Online sums up all relevant information and studies about this topic.

PATRONAGE

Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi)