Sidekick joins Switzerland’s leading scaleup program Kickstart Innovation

SidekickHealth has been selected to join other leading scaleups to participate in a program by the Swiss innovation platform Kickstart, allowing it to link up with a range of investors and  corporate partners as it seeks to further progress its gamified digital therapeutics collaborations.

“We are extremely excited to explore commercial opportunities with some of the leading corporate players in our sector. Kickstart’s program has a proven track record of matching innovative scaleups with corporate partners to form long-term relationships,” Sidekick’s chief marketing & communications officer Gulli Arnason said.

Founded five years ago, Kickstart has become of the largest European innovation programs and has already begun around 120 pilots and commercial projects in various sectors.

Kickstart focuses on scaling up companies in five different areas: EdTech and New Work, FinTech and InsurTech, Food and Retail, HealthTech and Smart City and Technology.

So far this year, 51 new startups from 11 countries have begun working with the Switzerland-based innovation hub and Sidekick is one of seven that have joined its HealthTech group.

From September onwards, the startups will be able to work with partners, including AXA, Coop, Migros, Swisscom, Mobiliar, ETH Zurich, City of Zurich, PostFinance and Credit Suisse.

This year also saw Kickstart bring on board partners new partners, such as Movenpick, New Work SE, Energie 360, Roche, Holcim Switzerland, Nespresso and Canton de Vaud.

The startups will also be able to engage with businesses in the area of Romandy, in Greater Zurich.

A spin-off of Impact Hub Zurich, Kickstart is one of Europe’s largest zero equity innovation platforms, running a scale-up programme for high-growth startups.

Its idea is to build bridges and bring together organisations such as startups, corporates, cities, foundations and universities.

Each year, Kickstart brings up to 100 entrepreneurs to Switzerland to collaborate with key players to expand their projects, as well as accelerating internal innovation.

Following a kick-off on September 30 there will be a six-week collaboration period, during which international teams will engage in Switzerland.

Locations this year are the innovation space Kraftwerk in Zurich and Impact Hub Lausanne.

There will also be nine “intrapreneurship” teams that will be aiming to accelerate their internal innovation.

 “Despite COVID-19, Kickstart has received high-quality applications from over 55 countries and overall there has been a significant increase of deeptech ventures with the appetite to scale in Switzerland,” said Kickstart’s co-lead, Katka Letzing,

“From September to November, the startups will have the opportunity to co-create in the form of Proof-of-Concepts, pilots and commercial projects with Kickstart partners, leading organizations and companies,” Letzing added.

Startups participating in the 2020 program combine a high level of technological innovation with solutions that are intended to foster sustainable development.

Food and Retail Tech startup, Vital Vio designs, engineers and manufactures antibacterial LED technology for a growing range of commercial and residential applications.

FinTech startup Keyless develops solutions for biometric, simultaneously secure authentication, while Insurtech startup MotionsCloud ensures the processing of insurance claims in real time.

Smart City startup Neustark is working on the reduction of cement by turning CO2 into carbonated elements in the building industry, and EdTech and New Work startup, Coopacademy, provides personalized digital learning content for professional training.

Founded by two medical doctors, Sidekick is targeting the 68% of deaths that are related to lifestyle-related illnesses.

The company uses gamification techniques to encourage people to engage in healthy behaviors, rewarding them with progress in altruistic real-life projects should they achieve their health targets.

Projects used to encourage healthier lifestyles include collecting droplets of water for children in need.