Connecting manufacturing industries with innovative Start- & Scale-ups

Connecting manufacturing industries with innovative Start- & Scale-ups

Based on the work of Omar Mohout (Sirris), latest figures show that the Belgian start-up & scale-up scene not only is a strong B2B oriented business, but also focuses heavily on the manufacturing industry. To connect these fairly new technology companies with Agoria’s manufacturing industry members, a first “Agoria embracing start-ups: the Industry Sessions”  was organized on December, 6th 2017 in Brussels.

Each of the carefully selected start-up or scale-up companies was given the floor for a strong 5 minute pitch around IoT-enabled data analytics and connected hardware.

We invite you to discover the core of the presentations as well as the very positive feedback we received from the side of the industry as well as from the start-ups themselves. 

IoT-enabled Data Analytics

Datastories“1000 data scientists in a box” – regretfully discovered that up to 90% of the budgets are usually spent on data collection with little to no plans on what to do with it afterwards. They kicked-off by stating that in order to detect the story behind your data two challenges pop up:

  1. AI (artificial intelligence) & machine learning should be given in the hands of domain experts, with simple tools.
  2. There’re simply not enough data scientists to solve all related challenges and opportunities. 

This new start-up wants to give focus and guidance to domain experts by automatic algorithm generation solving pre-processing issues before giving the data to the domain expert. The tool builds on strong predictive models (“what if” scenario’s) and is able to generate the right dashboards in an extremely short timeframe. 

Some clever people recently figured out that - knowing it was already problematic finding the good ICT-people when the use of the Internet started booming - it will become an even tougher job with blockchain technology.  In 2016 these Leuven-based people built a new start-up called SettleMint - . They assure us that you can start building blockchain applications in no time. They configure  and integrate blockchain based applications using specific ‘MINT’ middleware, thereby offering specific and easy to program software-development scripts so customers can easily build their own blockchain applications. Typical project throughput times only last 4 to 6 weeks! 

The 6 year old scale-up Yazzoom - - recently introduced their Yanomaly softwaretool that uses artificial intelligence to automatically learn normal machine (fleet) operations and detect anomalies. In other words the offered solution will tell the client what’s happening the few critical minutes before machines break down.

Moreover, through smart extraction of valuable data from machines, the customer can quickly and efficiently learn how their machines are currently used, in order to optimize the design of the next generation machine. Philips, Barco, Siemens, Océ and AGFA are only a few examples of Yazzoom’s customer base. 

Inimco - - a start-up founded in Oct 2016, connecting assets, services and customers, provides equipment and machine builders with IoT-based servitisation and efficiency solutions.  A SaaS-model is on their roadmap; for the time being they offer consultancy on how to accelerate through clever combination of re-usable components (digital twin creation tools, info portals for remote monitoring, asset connection devices) from their existing framework, that can easily get integrated in the client’s and/or customers’ systems. 

Opinum - - has introduced Opisense, a tool unlocking customer’s environment-related building data. Efficiency gains are realized through centralizing data from many different sources. Opisense thereby not only controls a building’s energy forecasting, predictive maintenance, etc but also automatically takes care of managing the data quality, fixing data gaps, etc. Opinum made the claim that within 40 days a specific business case can be picked up and results of first experiments can be made available. Sonaca, Total and Eoly (energy company) are just a few of their reference customers. 

Connected hardware

Otrema - -  a Brussels based start-up working together with 4 suppliers, a senior researcher on user experience and the AI-experts of the VUB, has developed the world's first room based heating system powered by Artificial Intelligence. Achieving up to 30% of savings on heating through smart zone heating, applying sensorless absenteeism detection, etc, the Otrema solution operates a dynamic heating schedule that gets adjusted automatically afterwards for optimal results. Moreover, user experience is at the heart of the solution as the system doesn’t require an extra configuration box or an engineer’s degree to operate it. 

Rombit - -  an Antwerp based company dedicated to making your organization futureproof through IoT solutions, recently built a web & mobile sensor based IoT-application on 6 legacy platforms  of the city of Antwerp to manage the booking, installation and removal of temporary parking ban signs used by citizens when moving houses. Their typical project approach can be summarized as

  1. connect everything
  2. add a layer of cloud software
  3. add IoT
  4. build the hardware & infrastructure                                                                                         

Screvle - - Platform Based Custom Electronics, offers as a service the building platform for easy-to-use and reliably connected IoT-based connected electronic devices. They can do this 3 times cheaper and up to 5 times faster than yourself as the platform they offer contains 80% of the features which are similar in these kind of devices. The only thing the customer needs to do is to add the 20% customer specific content of the product.  Screvle supports customers from idea to production, offering prototypes with the newest features very quickly.  As the customer will gain most from being offered substantial economies of scale in production, Screvle applies a profit-sharing business model.

A copy of the presentations can be asked by simple request to:

After the pitches people were invited to visit demo’s after which a lot of interesting innovation discussions took place during the networking part of the event. 

Some quotes of the participants :

Pieter De Bruyn (Volvo Trucks Belux): “This event; Agoria Embracing Start-ups ”The Industry Sessions” was once again a brilliant initiative from Agoria. In a very short notice we learned to know, once more, very promising start-ups, with whom we’d like to work further on our digital transformation project”

Roel Van den Bergh (DataStories) “Due to Agoria's professionalism and dedication to this event, DataStories could generate several opportunities, making our Belgian companies more competitive by bringing Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning power to domain experts.” –

Eliseo Manfron (NRB) "Very relevant and efficient way to discover innovative start-up technologies! In less than 2 hours, we got a to-the-point 5' presentation of eight industry-related start-ups followed by discussions & demos at their booth during the networking event. Great formula & opportunity to identify potential partners/eco-systems!" -

Vincent Hebbelynck (Belgacom): ““We already know a lot about 5G and fiber, but this event opened up new innovation ideas which we might develop for our industrial customers”

Ina Averhals (Opinium): “very focused networking moment with specific opportunities”

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