Winners and organizers of Draper’s Silicon Spring Pitch Prize 2024
Author profile picture

Stefanie Broes’s eloquent pitch yesterday at the LUMO Labs Draper pitch competition for impact start-ups won her and her start-up Moonbird a trip to Silicon Valley. Athalis Kratouni (Tenbeo) and Mario Edoardo Simmaco (GreenAnt), will join Broes at Draper University as runners-up. Moonbird, based in Antwerp, is a health and well-being company focused on relaxation and sleep. “We believe that slow breathing exercises can calm down the nervous system. We’re building innovative tech solutions to enable people to use their breath as a tool to be less stressed, calmer, and sleep better.”

It may sound easy, Broes said, “but distractions often triumph over our focus. It helps to have something to hold onto. Our scientific research led us to something so simple we tend to overlook it: your breath. Not only does it keep you alive, but you can also use it to reset yourself. Our mission is easy: to make as many people as possible discover how much power they hold. Just by breathing.”

Moonbird offers a small $199 device that pulsates in the rhythm of the (desired) breath, a handheld breathing coach that expands and contracts in the palm of your hand. “You literally feel the movement in your hand, and you copy this movement with your breath”, said Broes, who founded the company together with her brother Michael.


The device incorporates a heart rate sensor, so it can also measure the impact of breathing exercises on your body and see how it responds in real-time to them. It also comes with an app that gives you access to educational content about why breathwork is important. The app allows you to see the biofeedback and the effects of the breathing exercise over time to track your progress. The use is intuitive, Broes said in her pitch: “When it expands, you breathe in. When it contracts, you breathe out. And it makes your whole breathwork meditation experience much more intuitive to focus on.”

Winners of Draper’s Silicon Spring Pitch Prize 2024
Winners of Draper’s Silicon Spring Pitch Prize 2024, with Stefanie Broes holding the biggest board.

LUMO Labs hosted Draper’s Silicon Spring Pitch Prize, which was juried by Frank Claassen, Robin Hendrickx, Lisa Brouwer, Margherita Marchetti, Bart Budde, Philipa O.W. Biritwum, Khadija Ghazi, and Madelon Strijbos.