Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The World Economic Forum has selected two Swiss and two Japanese start-ups for its list of 100 Technology Pioneers 2020. Akselos and Climeworks from Switzerland and Abeja and CureApp from Japan will now begin a two-year journey and become part of the World Economic Forum’s initiatives, activities, and events, putting their cutting-edge insight and fresh thinking into critical global discussions.
The Technology Pioneers of 2020 bring together 100 early to growth-stage companies from around the world that are pioneering new technologies and innovations, ranging from the use of artificial intelligence to diagnose cancers and quantum computing systems, to carbon capture and removing technologies, cell-grown meat production and use of microbiome to track goods.
Japan: Abeja (AI)
This machine learning company develops end-to-end artificial intelligence solutions using a self-developed platform. Yosuke Okada, its CEO, founded Abeja 2012 in Tokyo. The company aims to transform industrial structures with the power of new technologies. “We will implement cutting-edge technologies for the real business scenes, such as stores and factories,” Okada says.
Abeja’s goal is to achieve a world where artificial intelligence (AI) is the norm, providing a platform that minimizes the process of AI development and operation, as well as sales analysis software as a service for retail distributors. It also provides end-to-end support for companies’ AI transformations, from strategic planning to implementation and operation.
Switzerland: Akselos (IoT)
This start-up uses real-time digital twins to accelerate the energy transition. With the headquarters located in Lausanne, Thomas Leurent founded Akselos in 2013. “The energy transition tipping point will arrive when the cost of renewable energy competes with the marginal cost of fossil fuels,” he said. “Extreme engineering with real-time digital twins will accelerate the energy transition and make clean energy affordable for all.”
Akselos has created one of the world’s fastest and most advanced engineering simulation technologies to help protect critical infrastructure and accelerate the energy transition. The company’s flagship product, the Digital Guardian, is revolutionizing the management of large, complex assets by offering real-time, condition-based monitoring, and a window into the future with predictive analytics.
Japan: CureApp (Health)
This start-up focuses on prescription digital therapeutics to treat medical disorders and diseases. CureApp based in Tokyo was founded by Kota Satake 2014. “We aim for a world where personalized digital therapeutics is widely recognized and adopted by prescribing physicians,” he said. “Our solution is a natural choice in the practice of evidence-based medicine.”
CureApp strives for the ideal of medical care: a world where everyone can equally receive high-quality treatment without financial concerns. In the process of chasing the ideal, it develops evidence-based therapeutic interventions – prescription digital therapeutics – for patients who suffer from conditions where conventional treatment methods with drugs or devices were not effective.
Switzerland: Climeworks (Public Goods)
This company from Zurich aims to empower climate positiveness by permanently removing carbon dioxide from the air. Christoph Gebald and Jan Wurzbacher created Climeworks it in 2009. „There is little as challenging as the biggest problem humanity has ever faced: climate change,“ they said. “Our technology can be used to go backward, not only to stop climate change but to reverse it.”
Climeworks captures carbon dioxide from the air. Climeworks direct air capture plants capture CO2 with a patented filter and are powered by either waste or renewable energy. The air-captured carbon is sold to customers in the food, beverage and agriculture, and renewable fuels and materials markets. Climeworks also offers carbon dioxide removal by safely and permanently storing air-captured CO2 underground, thereby ultimately stopping climate change from reaching dangerous levels.
Text: SCCIJ with material of WEF Technology Pioneers