06 Mar Recap: ING Innovation Studio Demo Day 3.0
On Thursday 23rd February, ING Bank hosted a demo day to present the great projects and companies that are incubated in the ING Innovation Studio in Amsterdam.
While the stormy clouds were preparing wind and rain outside, a crowd gathered in a co-working space on the ground floor around the corner of the ING global headquarters in the southern office district of the Bijlmer Arena.
The ING Innovation Studio offers an accelerator the programme designed for early stage start-ups and consists of six months of intensive product development guided by 30 skilled mentors and high tech resources. All this under the wings of the orange colours of ING bank and coordinated by our friends Willem Schellekens and Adam Ayers. Currently, six ninja firms are working and “living” at the ING Innovation Studio from different parts of the world.
On this day we would be amazed by pitches of five graduates. The demo day was moderated by famous start-up pitch coach David Beckett (check out his great tips here). David Beckett kicked off the event by engaging the attendees through the interactive tool Buzzmaster. After everyone uploaded their selfie and answered some questions the screen visualised who was in the room.
Willem Schellekens took over the stage and proudly demonstrated the great outcomes of the programme. Why the term ninjas? Willem explained that a ninja stands for the start-up: agile, flexible and achieving its goals no matter what. The samurai however, represents the corporate world: traditional, serving humans according to fixed rules. On this day, both worlds came together.
Then, ING’s Head of Fintech, Benoit le Grand, saluted everyone with a video message. Hereafter, the ninja graduates stepped on stage, presenting their products. Joris Docter, Co-founder of Gekko, demonstrated their state-of-the-art accounting platform aimed at freelancers (ZZPers) and small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Gekko showed an impressive income growth of 126% in the last six months.
Next came StartupInsight, co-founded by three Dutch entrepreneurs is a blockchain-driven platform that offers financial and legal data of many start-ups in the Netherlands.
Then, EasyTradingConnect showed a successful use case of the blockchain in trade finance. The two ING executives and founders of EasyTradingConnect aimed to improve the paper-based transactions of international trade and set up a collaborative blockchain project between ING Bank, Société Generale and commodity trading firm Mercuria. The project is community owned and offers a completely paperless of trade contracts and enables transparent financing opportunities.
Alexander Brouwer, CEO and founder of Holland FinTech member Surance, took the audience on a journey of modern personal finance. Surance is a smartphone application that lets you manage your savings and retirement planning from your pocket. Giacomo Barigazzi from Axyon.ai offers a completely different service but definitely not less interesting. Axyon.ai is an Italy-based predictive analytics tool based on machine learning for businesses.
We are pleased to see the positive results of the ING innovation programme and we look forward to the next generation of great fintech firms. Congratulations to all graduates!
For more information on the ING Innovation Studio, click here.