Seven stories of Spanish entrepreneurs in a super European list
Seven stories of Spaniards in the European rundown of the 30 under 30 years of Forbes for their development ventures connected to innovation. A recognition of ingenuity, value and research. The list 30 under 30 European made by the economic magazine Forbes distinguishes 300 young entrepreneurs in ten categories. The publication includes those innovators with the potential to become a reference for a generation in different areas, including technology, communication, politics, art or finance. In the group stands out the Madrid-born Arantxa Unda, who heads the list of the 30 chosen in the category Science and Health.
Seven of the Spanish entrepreneurs selected by Forbes tell the story of their project.
The woman without fear
Do not be afraid to risk. Do not stay without trying, even if you fail. Two very familiar phrases for Arantxa Unda, always heard at home Pronounced this time by their Harvard MBA project teacher. A knock. “In the week of the graduation I rejected the offers of employment of multinationals in the United States and I decided to return to Spain”, remembers Unda, 29 years old. He set up a promising financial career in London and New York, in addition to his master’s degree-funded curriculum to take charge of Sigesa, an SME of health management technology that his father had founded. “I was really attracted to the idea of service to society through an area that I know and that has to do with the welfare of citizens.” Arantxa is a woman who likes to introduce into the conversation that crucial right that is universal access to health care and that teacher told her to bet on what she believed.
A year and a half later, Unda leads the list of 30 under 30 of European Forbes in the section of Science and Health as CEO of the company. When getting off the plane that returned her to Spain in 2015, with a project in her pocket and 27 years, she went through the banks to get financing, – “I had to be accompanied by the financial director, to support me” – and she bought an important package of Actions.
Today he leads a team of 24 people focused on the management of the valuable and numerous data generated by patients and health care systems. “We codify these data and structure them to be able to manage and analyze them intelligently.” In this way they serve their 400 clients, mostly in Spain but also in Portugal and Latin America. They are health departments or hospitals, basically integrated into the public system. They help them improve the quality of their services by offering mechanisms to identify anomalies, for example, excessive complications or hospital readmissions. The next objective of this group immersed in recent months in internal change and renewal? “Get cross the economic information with the clinical information to offer more tools”, responds
How to stand out among 20,000 applicants? “I think they reward the initiative, we introduce ourselves”, observes the directive, titled in ADE International, “and a career change”.
Low battery? Plug your phone into a pot
Pablo Vidarte, Alexandre Díaz and Javier Rodríguez are 20 years old. They have entered the Forbes list of entrepreneurs under the age of 30 by inventing them so that a natural process, photosynthesis, generates electricity. “We have just closed a financing round of 311,000 euros,” explains Alexandre Díaz, one of the three partners of Bioo, a company that these friends developed eating some pizzas. “We are now exploring how to apply this technology to other formats, such as televisions or restaurants.” At the moment, its flagship product is still a pot with a USB port in the form of rock. Simply plug in the smartphone so that the electrons generated in photosynthesis are captured by the Bioo system and recharge the terminal’s battery.
Forbes mentions these Catalan entrepreneurs in the Industry category and, in addition, in the Dorm room project, which includes ideas that were born with few resources and much originality (in bedrooms, precisely, giants such as Facebook or Dell were designed). They are also among the youngest winners. “That is sometimes a handicap to seek investment, you have to show more that your project is good, it is a challenge, but we have a ‘very good’ advisory team that helps us with the management and business plan,” explains Díaz . Among other recognitions, Bioo was raised in the last South Summit with the award for the most disruptive startup.
Edpuzzle, the YouTube of the teachers
Xavi, Jordi, Santi and Quim met at three years old in a school in Barcelona. Today they are 28 years old and are the founders of Edpuzzle, winner in 2014 of the prize for the best education startup in the world, the Global Edtech Startups Award The platform, recognized by Forbes in Social Entrepreneurs. allows teachers to create their own didactic videos and aims to become the YouTube of teachers. The project was born in 2013 in Silicon Valley, managed to raise four million dollars in funding rounds and is used by nine million students and teachers from 150 countries. In the United States, its main market is used by one in four schools and in Spain, which occupies the second position, 2% of teachers. “The most valuable thing about our tool is that it allows us to monitor the evolution of students, teachers know which students are understanding the lesson well and which are having difficulties,” explains Santi Herrero, co-founder of Edpuzzle.
The idea arose from the frustration of Quim Sabrià, another of the founders who at that time was a professor of mathematics at a public institute in Badalona. His problem was that it was difficult for him to find quality videos on the Internet on which to mount his lessons, so he decided to create his own pills. For this he asked for help from his three school friends, all of them telecommunications engineers, and together they shaped Edpuzzle. They created a platform that allows searches by themes (for example, addition and subtraction) in specialized channels such as YouTube, Vimeo or National Geographic, and then edit them. Teachers can enter text, images and voice. The tool is free and already adds more than 2.5 million videos created by teachers.
The app that brings you whatever
Glovo started by offering a service for “posh”, in the words of Oscar Pierre himself (Barcelona, 1992), co-founder of the app with Sacha Michaud. After studying aerospace engineering between the Polytechnic of Barcelona and the prestigious Georgia Tech (summa cum laude, says his LinkedIn profile), this descendant of Catalan entrepreneurs decided to follow the family tradition and leave Airbus to start their own adventure. “I’ve always been very restless. I went to the United States because everything happens there before. And I saw a clear tendency to want to get things faster and faster, especially in the cities. ” He returned to Barcelona in 2015, got an initial investment of 100,000 euros and that’s how Glovo started, the app that allows you to order whatever you want and that is delivered to you in no more than one hour. In principle, it does sound a little bit for the posh.
But in less than two years Glovo has known how to grow and evolve with Pierre at the forefront, which has earned him to be among the 30 Europeans under 30 of Forbes in the e-commerce category. “We have found a service that engages people, anyone.” They turned their model around and became a marketplace, an online product selling application, such as JustEat, but with an offer that goes beyond shipments of prepared food and allows them to place orders with supermarkets, local stores, pharmacies or Florists (and that keeps the magic button so that the user can keep asking for anything). They began to associate with businesses as the basis of their business model, “so as not to have to charge everything to the customer, which made the price much more expensive”, explains Pierre. An almost definitive marketplace that has attracted more than seven million euros of investments, among others from Antai, the Barcelona firm behind Wallapop or Cornerjob. Glovo is present in Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Valencia, Zaragoza, Malaga, Paris and Milan. And its expansion continues.
The accelerator for all
A startup accelerator does not usually select many projects for its programs. About 20 or 25 a year (with exceptions like Y Combinator, the reference in Silicon Valley). Bridge For Billions (B4B) has 120 in less than a year (and 45% are women, something totally unusual). Their three-month courses with mentors cost around 340 euros, a price unimaginable in other programs. “In addition, we do not ask for equity, that is, our business model is not based on taking 30% of the shares of the projects we support,” emphasizes Pablo Sánchez Santauefemia (Madrid, 1989), director of Bridge for Billions and selected by Forbes in the category of social entrepreneurs. But what most differentiates B4B is that it is offshored, which allows coverage of companies and entrepreneurs in remote places or countries with a fabric devoid of resources. The other difference is that in B4B it fits anyone. It is the democratization of the accelerators.
Sánchez went to study in the United States when he was only 16 years old. He studied mechanical engineering at Brown and administration and innovation in technology and engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. “I understood that the development is not achieved from the engineering, but promoting entrepreneurship in areas that do not have access to resources, bringing them the necessary technology,” he says. Since summer 2015, he has researched and tested accelerator methods to create B4B with the help of Impact Hub Madrid. Anyone can enter the B4B programs, and the mentors (already more than 150) are the ones who choose which projects they are involved in after an algorithm makes recommendations based on elements such as the language or the business sector. As if it were Tinder, if there is a match, the collaboration starts. “Entrepreneurs and mentors work with a clear guide to the development of the project, designed for first-time phases, which are the most risky. There they get everything they need to be able to talk to investors prepared, with resources and without fear, “Sanchez says. The success of B4B is demonstrated by a simple fact: Sánchez is not the first in B4B in the Forbes lists. He is preceded by David Asiamah, one of the most promising entrepreneurs in Africa in 2016 according to the magazine. Your company, Agro Mindset, grew thanks to the B4B program.
An AirBnB of energy
Alex Sicart (Barcelona, 1999) is only 17 years old and already on Forbes’ list of young European innovators. But with 14 already came out in the press. He learned to program at the dawn of adolescence, when he created a platform with a friend to manage classroom duties. Now he has created together with David Andrés and Elsa Rodríguez (also aged 17) Sharged, an idea that uses an app and a device installed in the chargers so that any user can share the power of their electric car, in the same way as AirBnB allows you to share your house or Uber your car.
For this they have had to overcome a small problem: “Sharing energy between individuals is, to this day, illegal in Spain,” reveals Sicart. To avoid legal obstacles, they have set up their payment system through a bitcoin type of fictitious currency. Thanks to the blockchain technology, they guarantee the security of the process from end to end to the electricity users and users, and “because it is a system based on a distributed network that does not belong to anyone and is nowhere”, its payments, impossible to manipulate, they are not subject to national legislation. An idea with which Audi and Endesa already collaborate and that, Sicart predicts, “is the future, we will all have collaborative energy in our cars and homes”.
Drones have more and more uses: almost undetectable spies, recreational objects for which tournaments are already organized and even elements that have endowed the cinema and television with angles that are hard to imagine. Light Energy is a project of a team of researchers from the University of Valladolid that has developed a hydrogen-based battery to extend the autonomy of these flying robots, an idea that has earned them the Forbes list in the Industry category. “We have been called by several companies in the sector and we are consolidating a prototype. And we are open to new applications for our technology, “explains Miriam Rueda, a 29-year-old researcher and co-promoter of the project. Its battery has more compact and lighter components, characteristics that can “easily multiply by two the duration of a normal lithium battery,” he says.
Light Energy is part of the research of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Environmental Technology of the University of Valladolid, from which two theses also emerged. The first funding received by the Rueda team came from his tutor. Then they were second in the Yuzz entrepreneurs platform contest, which earned them a trip to Silicon Valley, and among the five winners of the Model2Market2016, a position that brought them 10,000 euros. “All these recognitions have come a bit suddenly, but they are assuming a push to continue researching,” the researcher points out, and ends with an anecdote that claims group work: “We are a team of four people, but only I am younger than 30 years and that’s why I entered the Forbes list. ” For more information you can visit our website http://educacionytecnologia.tk
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