Initiated by E52 and High Tech Campus, the 10 most promising startups-to-watch from the Brainport Eindhoven region have been announced for the fourth consecutive year. On July 12th they received a Gerard & Anton Award. The winning companies are highlighted one by one in an interview. Today part 6: IPOS Technology and their Rein Sensor. read the whole series here.
Name: Menke Steenbergen
Startup: IPOS Technology
Year of establishment startup: 2017
What is the goal of your business?
“Our wearable, the IPOS Rein Sensor gives equestrians the competitive advantage they seek by improving their communication with the horse and detecting injuries in an early stage.”
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Is this your first startup?
How did the idea come about for your startup?
“I had the idea for a rein sensor during my education in Veterinary Medicine (UU), I believe technology can help also veterinary medicine from curative to more preventive health care.”
Has there ever been a change of focus, a pivot? Can you tell us something about the cause and the result?
“The base of the company is still the Rein Sensor (hardware) to begin with, we did move forward into making our analysing software and data cloud the core of the company. Giving us a more sustainable and scalable business model.”
I’m sure there was a moment when you lost faith in your startup. Can you describe that moment?
“We did have a first investment round with an investor that did not make a good fit, different expectations and investment strategy. It took me two years to buy him out and move forward. That was a real test of faith. I am happy to still believe in the product and get a lot of support from the industry. Finally last year we could start over with a clean slate and new partners. We came out stronger, that’s for sure.”
Are there startups/entrepreneurs that you see as an example?
“I learned a lot from innovators in other sports, for example, the Tongelreep. Their journey and struggle for acceptance by coaches and athletes inspire me to keep going.”
Where will you be with your company in 5 years’ time?
“We are one of the first to start innovating the Horse Sport. It is a niche market where we have the opportunity to become the market leader worldwide. Our strategy is to create an open platform where athletes can connect with multiple sensors in our app.”
What does Eindhoven mean for your company? And for yourself?
“For me, Eindhoven has brought me a great network of leading experts in technology. Being a veterinarian myself a lacked a lot of knowledge in this part. Now I have a great complimentary team and thanx to High Tech XL we can tap into a broad network of mentors. Eindhoven has been a warm bath of expertise, network and funding opportunities.”
What is the startup climate in Eindhoven like? Do you feel part of it? If so, how is this to be seen?
“We joined HTXL in 2017 and had a flying start getting to know the startup scene. Now we closed our first funding round and entered the high tech plaza at the campus. We are very happy to enjoy all the benefits of this network. For example last week we attended a class by Arjan Vestjes on Data science. Great knowledge to be able to gather simple over lunch.”
At what point could the Eindhoven startup ecosystem improve?
“Maybe organize a great barbeque to celebrate 🙂 ”
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