The Disruption Agenda is a Nedbank Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB) and Plug and Play initiative that will bring 10 visionary startups from across the globe to South Africa to meet with top business leaders.

Unveiling the 10 startups that are participating in The Disruption Agenda, Stuart van der Veen, Head of Disruption and Innovation at Nedbank CIB, explained that the primary objective of this initiative is to catalyse pilots and experiments and then, where possible, push them straight through to commercialisation with our clients.

‘We’ve engaged with our most forward-thinking clients,’ he explains ‘and they will participate in both the deal flow sessions and the actual pitches of the startups.’

The 10 global startups from across industry sectors selected to engage with South African businesses at the Disruption Agenda are as follows:

  • Koniku: Koniku believes the most advanced technology on earth can be found in biology, and sees nature as an open-source library. Koniku builds living machines with synthetic biology – machines that can identify fake food, design taste, and detect explosives, infectious diseases and cancers. Koniku grafts custom proteins that act as sensors on living cells (neurons) and encapsulates them within silicon chips. These chips, Koniku Kore’s, will one day power the next generation of cognitive robots.
  • Sentiance: Sentiance analyses sensor data to understand human behaviour and context so that clients can develop new products and services that turn the Internet of Things (IoT) into the Internet of You. Sentiance context intelligence enables solutions for lifestyle-based insurance, contextual marketing and commerce, smart mobility, connected health, smart homes, smart cities and connected cars.
  • LifeQ: LifeQ implements a unique multidisciplinary approach, underpinned by indepth knowledge and understanding of human physiology and systems biology, to extract and deliver relevant, meaningful and specific digital biomarkers from various curated data sources. It is a world-leading science and technology company that wants people from all walks of life to enjoy optimal health. LifeQ generates and makes available high-value personalised health information and solutions, which would traditionally be inaccessible or obtainable only through costly and invasive means, at a reliability level suitable for use by individuals, businesses, and clinical providers.
  • Wasteless: Wasteless is the world’s first machine-learning solution with real-time tracking for grocery stores looking to offer customers dynamic pricing based on a product’s expiration date. Wasteless takes machine-learning capabilities used online and brings them to ‘brick and mortar’ outlets. Tracking products at item level, automating manual processes and applying dynamic pricing have been the foundation of successful e-commerce platforms, enabling them to substantially increase profits. Wasteless allows supermarkets to close the gap and compete in the digital era.
  • Trueface computer vision solutions augment any existing camera feeds into intelligent, actionable data that can identify people of interest, objects and more. Trueface provides facial-recognition and spoof detection solutions for clients of all sizes. It provides an application programming interface, on-site solution and a no-code solution for identity management. Trueface’s mission is to educate on the benefits of computer vision and make it accessible to businesses looking for more unique and secure solutions.
  • Aerobotics: Aerobotics provides farmers around the world with world-leading pest and disease management systems for tree crop protection using drone and satellite data. Aerobotics software, called Aeroview, empowers tree-crop farmers to identify early problems in their orchards. Used in conjunction with the Aerobotics Aeroview Scout App on their smartphones, farmers can locate problem areas on a tree-by-tree basis. Achieving success for over six million trees to date, Aerobotics is setting the standard for tree-crop analytics globally and innovating agricultural processes as we know them.
  • What3Words: What3Words is a universal addressing system that provides a precise and incredibly simple way to talk about location. They divided the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares and assigned each one a unique three-word address. Better addressing can enhance customer experience and business efficiency, drive growth and support social and economic development. It was the first system designed for voice and human interaction with machines.
  • Dispel: Dispel makes cloaking technology, rendering networked infrastructure and endpoints invisible and segmented, thereby preventing attackers from gaining knowledge that can be used in cyberattacks. Dispel cloaking is a secure overlay network in which applications can be deployed, or around which infrastructure can be concealed. This cloaking is accomplished through network-level Moving Target Defense: an orchestrated mass-virtualisation and encryption technology designed to disrupt attacker operations, which is well ahead of older technologies. Dispel has established an industry-leading security program, ensuring customers have a high degree of confidence and trust in its stewardship of customer data and operations.
  • nxt: IoT.nxt has developed a world-leading framework that makes efficiencies, cost savings and increased revenue from IoT (Internet of Things) a reality for businesses. The IoT.nxt platform allows rapid deployment so that businesses can action an IoT strategy with little disruption to current operations. The major strength of the IoT.nxt framework is that the solution is technology agnostic. It can help digitise any industry, any system and any process. IoT.nxt lays the foundation for rapid digitisation, creating agile, efficient, future-proofed businesses.
  • GotBot: Artificial Intelligence with the human touch. GotBot is a machine learning platform that automates conversations between brands and their customers, consolidating all digital messaging services onto one Dashboard. You can train the bot in the Dashboard in Real Time using relevant data and it requires zero programming skill.

‘The solutions built by these innovative startups demonstrate the importance of using technology to future-proof not only businesses, but also human lives,’ Van der Veen explains, ‘and they serve as a reminder of how critical disruption is in every industry today.’

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