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Singapore, Italy, France, The United States, Estonia, Czech Republic. Over 20 nationalities came to Rotterdam for a 3-day event that was designed to impact the startup ecosystem in the city and unlock business opportunities for these innovators from all over the world. 7 committed pilot projects later, the initiative was a real success.

From ways to improve citizen interaction to solutions to bring connected driving to the market, the Challenges of Rotterdam Unlocked tackled several different areas and market. Opportunities were created for 7 startups that landed pilot projects with Robeco, KPN, Strukton and Municipality of Rotterdam.

Rotterdam Unlocked brought valuable business opportunities for the startups, and it also helped the corporates find possible solutions for their problems. Not to mention the fact that the startup ecosystem in Rotterdam will benefit greatly from these collaborations, bringing more talent to the city.

Pilot Projects

The first pilot announced was with the Municipality of Rotterdam. They need to improve citizen satisfaction by making their call centers better and more efficient. The Municipality decided to collaborate with two startups: Knowingo and Embot.

Knowingo is a learning platform and mobile app that uses gamification and artificial intelligence to solve knowledge and learning problems in society today. Embot enables companies to automate and scale their customer service through intelligent artificial intelligence agents: Chatbots and Voice Assistants.

KPN wanted to find a way to bring automated and connected driving to the market, and they will do that using the technology developed by Roboauto. They have developed the first self-driving car in the Czech Republic, which can be controlled remotely, allowing for more control and a smoother transitions towards automated driving.

For Strukton, it was a matter of finding a way to reduce energy consumption in their buildings. The solution they chose to go for was the one by Kindow. Their technology is an automatic blind switch.

Robeco challenged startups to make investment fun, and they did not disappoint. Bankify and Gamification Nation were the chosen ones. Bankify is developing next-generation user experience to personal finance solutions and Gamification Nation specializes in offering Gamification Design Solutions.

Over the next 3 to 6 months, the pilot projects will be developed. Hopefully, this will be the beginning of successful collaborations between the selected startups and the corporates.