Another record for startups
15 March 2016
The number of startups at DTU grew again in 2015. In total, 54 new businesses were established, with students behind the majority.
The number of new startups at DTU in 2015 surpassed that of the year before. In total, 54 new businesses were established, three more than in 2014. Students were behind 31 companies, while employees of DTU established 23 new businesses. In 2014 there were 21 student-startups and 30 employee-startups. Marianne Thellersen, executive vice president for innovation and entrepreneurship, is pleasantly surprised that the figure this year is so high: "I think that the record number of startups partly because DTU is riding on the trend where it is hip to be an entrepreneur. Programs like 'lion's den' at Denmark Radio testifies to the trend. Here aspiring entrepreneurs have the chance to present their business to a number of investors. In addition, there is an increased focus on innovation in colleges and schools. I think that helps to motivate young people " she says.
Students overtake employees
The students involved in starting businesses come from 14 different educational programs and bring great imagination. Among the new companies are Siren, where students have invented a sock with built-in sensors that address foot ulcers in diabetic patients. Students from the company Trusted Sport have invented an app to evaluate and share the fun run in Denmark, and a group of students who are behind Relibond, have invented a special joining technique for high voltage channels.
"The reason for the large number of student startups is that there is a strong focus on innovation at DTU. We talk a lot about innovation in teaching, and support the innovation environment with entrepreneurial communities like DTU Skylab, where students meet each other across disciplines, "says Marianne Thellersen". Moreover, we provide mentors, lawyers and accountants to help students get started with the new companies. One of the latest initiatives is an entrepreneur dinner where we invite founders of startups and spin outs from 2012-2015 to celebrate the entrepreneurs and recognize the importance and value that they bring to the university". The trend in employee startups include medical engineering as diagnosis and immunotherapy, big data and internet-of-things, where more and more products are becoming 'intelligent', being equipped with small computers and biosensors coupled together with the internet. Among startups from DTU's employees find thus also a coffee laboratory that has developed technology solutions for cold brewing coffee.