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Accelerator | Nairobi and Darmstadt open doors to international startups
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20 Mar Nairobi and Darmstadt open doors to international startups

With more than 200 applications from 47 countries, our accelerator programs in Darmstadt and Nairobi attracted the interest of passionate startup teams from around the globe.

On March 14th, the ten most promising applicants for the Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany accelerator program were invited to Pitch Day, an opportunity for them to present their ideas before a selection of judges. The panel was made up of our employees, external Venture Capitalists, and experts in startup development. Their votes reduced the field to three. We are pleased to introduce this year’s winners of the accelerator program.

Check-ER, led by Leon Hulli and Rachel Bodkier from Tel Aviv, Israel, is a mobile app aimed at optimizing wait time in Emergency Rooms. By connecting to a hospital’s administrative data, Check-ER would be able to calculate patient wait time and organize the queue based on a preliminary diagnosis, with more urgent care issues prioritized.

PEAT, led by Simone Strey and Alexander Kenneopohl from Hannover, Germany, is a software startup employing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect plant diseases via image recognition. The system is not only able to diagnose plants from their pictures, the system is designed to learn from new submissions for more precise recognition as it develops.

Matibabu is an app that is able to diagnose malaria without a blood sample. The program instead uses a phone’s camera. It can tell if a person has malaria by measuring light absorption when pressed to the fingertip. The startup was created by Josiah Kavuma and Shafik Sekitto from Kampala, Uganda.

Michael Gamber, Head of the Innovation Center, looks forward to what the startups can create in the accelerator program. „With our selection for the second round of our Darmstadt Accelerator Program, we set the agenda with topics of global importance, reaching from malaria diagnosis to Artificial Intelligence. That suits the global approach of our accelerator mission.“

The winning startups for accelerator program in Nairobi focused on digital health.

Caitlin Dolkart and Maria Rabinovich developed Flare, a Transportation Network Company, like Uber, that makes ambulances more readily accessible in Nairobi. As there is no centralized phone number to call in case of emergency, the team developed a technical infrastructure that organizes the transportation of emergency patients considering available ambulances and hospital capacities.

The team at Miti Health improves the supply chain of medication. Currently owners of private chemist shops have inefficient supply chains because they cannot efficiently predict demand or react to higher orders. Miti Health sets up a technological infrastructure to optimize this process from inventory management to quality certification.  The startup is led by Jessica Vernon and Jennifer Stutsman.

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