StartUp and Innovations Degist #14July2016

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#Blockchain IBM Unveils New Cloud Blockchain Security Service

“IBM today unveiled a new service designed to help businesses test and run blockchain projects meant to handle private or sensitive data.”

CEO and founder Leanne Kemp of blockchain startup Everledger:

“Some of the startups that are working in this space are too worried about the bells and whistles of the blockchain. But it’s actually a very serious technology that needs to be taken very seriously.”

#Motivation 6 Pieces of Compelling Advice that Many Entrepreneurs Ignore

Next time good advice is offered, will you be listening?
“Entrepreneurs tend to get so busy that they may not heed impactful pieces of advice. And this oversight can negatively impact their success (or lack thereof) in their business ventures.”

“So, when good advice comes along, what about you? Do you pay attention? Have you learned to distinguish what “good advice” looks like? And how, exactly, do you do that?

For starters, consider these pieces of “good” advice.

1. Don’t chase the competition.
2. Don’t let your ego control you.
3. Don’t take negative reviews to heart.
4. Do pick the right mentor.
5. Do utilize artificial intelligence services
6. Do build a social media presence.

Read more details in the article.  Entrepreneurs do not have to follow every piece of advice they receive, of course.”

#StartupIndex Technology Trends Index USA

KPMG and Owlin together developed the KPMG Technology Trends Index. This index is not a snapshot, it provides a real time view of technology trends in eight large industry sectors.

(image updated on 11pm, GMT +2)

You can click on the trend you are interested, e.g. “Augmented reality” and see more details as it is shown in the next image.

#BiogeneticalWine Ava promises to clone high-end wines without using any grapes

“We create the wine without any grapes, yeast, or any kind of fermentation,” Lee, the founder of Ava Winery

“Right now the startup is focused on replicating three wine clones – a Moscato d’Aosta, a Dom Perignon, and just started work on a pinot noir.

Ava’s wine cloning lab in San Francisco.

Ava recently raised $2.5 million in funding from institutional investors with experience in the space but did not want to disclose just yet who those investors are.”

“At a very high level, the way future generations will make food is through synthetics” Lee said.

“It’s just not sustainable the other way around. Wine is a unique opportunity for us to legitimize synthetic foods because we can very quickly get to market. A rising tide lifts all boats and wine a great place for us to start.”

#HackingSpirituality Silicon Valley is hacking spiritual practices to boost productivity

Can you hack your way to enlightenment?

“In order to acquire the best talent, Silicon Valley companies appeal to this universal human desire to become part of something greater than oneself. Many startups tie their business goals to a mission around changing the world. It’s an effective recruiting and retention tactic.”

“Every Tuesday, the employees of Nootrobox, a startup that develops “smart drugs” for heightened cognitive functioning, fast for 36 hours. Co-founder and CEO Geoffrey Woo recently boasted to Quartz that Tuesdays are now “one of our most productive days of the week.”

“The team framed the fast as “biohacking,” a trend that seeks to acutely manage the human body in order to operate with the highest clarity and focus. It’s an extension of the quantified-self movement and is behind the Valley’s obsession with meal-replacement drink Soylent.” more details in the article.

#TravelStartup WeSwap, SnapTravel and More in Travel Startup Funding This Week

” WeSwap, raised a $7.2 million, P2P currency exchange focusing on travelers. Travelers swap currency with each other at the interbank exchange rate and pay a transparent fee. They receive an online account that holds multiple currencies and a WeSwap Prepaid MasterCard which enables them to access the funds in their account anywhere that accepts MasterCard. Right now the company can swap 18 currencies.

Skioo, raised a $6.1 million, a ski pass for dozens of ski resorts in Switzerland and is looking to expand its presence to resorts in Austria, France, and Italy. The company says it charges the lowest rate offered by the ski resorts based on time spent on the slopes.

Vntrip raised a $3 million, Vietnam-based startup, a hotel booking site and has nearly one million hotels available.

GigSky raised a $2.9 million, California-based startup’s total funding to about $22 million. The company offers an international SIM card that works in more than 90 countries.

SnapTravel raised a $1.1 million, San Francisco-based startup, a messaging bot that integrates with Facebook Messenger, Slack and SMS to help travelers book hotel rooms. The company launched this month and though the bot uses natural language processing and machine learning technology if a traveler makes a statement that is ambiguous to the bot a human agent will step in to guide it.

#InnovationScoreboard European innovation scoreboard shows established inequalities persisting

“The European Commission today releases the 2016 edition of its Innovation Scoreboard, which looks an awful lot like the 2015 version. This has been the map of European prosperity for at least the past century and, unfortunately, it doesn’t look like the trends across the continent will do anything to redress the balance. In fact, this innovation scorecard would suggest that inequalities are only going to deepen in the future.”

If you’ve ever wondered how rich countries stay ahead, the answer is always innovation. 

Here you can find and download a review of EU and non-EU countries.”

Just do it