Ten high tech Swiss startups are ready to pitch their novel technologies to local investors, experts and entrepreneurs in Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and Hong Kong.

venture leaders China 2016

Ten new Swiss startups selected to conquer China and its investors in 2016


St. Gall/Zurich/Lausanne, August 24th, 2016 – After a very successful second edition of the program venture leaders China in 2015, 10 new Swiss startups forming the “Swiss national startup team” are ready to conquer the Middle Kingdom in October 2016. The 10 high-tech entrepreneurs have been carefully selected among more than 60 high profile applications. They win an intense business development trip to Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and Hong Kong, co-organized with swissnex China. They will meet local investors, dive into China’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and learn about the opportunities of doing business there.

For Swiss startups, China is a key market to explore. With the necessity to increase the visibility of Swiss high-tech innovation in China, venturelab launched the first edition of venture leaders China in 2014 on the model of the venture leaders programs in New York and Boston. This year’s finalists will pitch their novel technologies to local investors, experts and entrepreneurs in four fast-paced innovation hubs: Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and for the first time this year, Hong Kong.

Increase the visibility of Swiss high-tech startups at an international level

“The objective of venture leaders is to showcase the diversity and the quality of Swiss high-tech innovation at an international level. The program also shows the interest of these startups for global markets such as China”, explains Jordi Montserrat, Managing Director of venturelab. Thanks to diplomatic events such as the visit of President Schneider-Ammann in China in April 2016, more and more members of the Chinese innovation ecosystem are getting interested in the Swiss-tech scene. This is great news for our finalists this year, whose products and services range from a wearable medical device to facilitate family planning, additive-free security elements that protect brands against counterfeiting, novel feed supplements for sustainable animal farming or cutting edge medical diagnostics devices.

“A market for every startup in China”

Further to the rising interest for Swiss innovation in China, the market opportunities abound: “China is a place that is growing fast and moving into an innovation-oriented economy”, explains Pascal Marmier, CEO of our partner swissnex China. “However, this market is a very competitive one, and the rules of the game might look different than the home market. This is why Swiss entrepreneurs need to come and experience the way of doing business in China, meet local experts, entrepreneurs, and investors and build strong relationships. Every startup has by definition a market in China, the key is on how to exploit it”. And the business development trip to China has proven successful for many entrepreneurs in the past years, such as Thomas Fessard, the CEO of SpiroChem. He was able to establish contacts with several potential partners and clients during the trip in 2015. Most importantly, the venture leaders China program enabled him to see “the potential and not only the threats of doing business in China.”

Useful links:

venture leaders China

66 years of bilateral relations between Switzerland and China

Meet the venture leaders China 2016  

Download their EN & CN public profiles here (zip files)

venture leaders China Groupe_horizontal_5

Luc Gervais, 1Drop Diagnostics – Medtech (www.1dropdx.com), Neuchâtel (EPFL-IMT)

1Drop Diagnostics is saving lives through better and faster portable medical diagnostics. The startup has developed a device that detects cardiovascular disease from a single drop of blood immediately in front of the patient. Download 1Drop Diagnostics public profile here

Serguei Okhonin, ActLight SA – Cleantech, Energy (www.act-light.com), Lausanne (EPFL)

ActLight’s developed the most powerful solution for low power, high sensitivity and on-chip integration for new light sensing applications. Applications range from mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, smart watches to wearable Medtech devices. Download ActLight SA publich profile here

Pascal Koenig, Ava AG – Medtech (www.avawomen.com), Zurich (ETHZ)

Ava develops a wearable medical device based on a patented multi-sensor technology, which monitors the menstrual cycle of women in order to precisely indicate fertile days and facilitate family planning. Compared with other methods and tools in the market, Ava’s solution is more convenient and precise. Download Ava AG public profile here

Marc Gitzinger, BioVersys AG – Biotech (www.bioversys.com), Basel (ETH Zurich Spin Off)

BioVersys focuses on research and development of small molecules, which switch off drug resistance against existing antibiotics. The Swiss biopharmaceutical company addresses the high unmet medical need for new treatments of life-threatening bacterial infections that emerged in recent years due to antibiotic resistance, such as tuberculosis and hospital acquired infections. Download BioBersys AG public profile here

Olga Peters, QualySense AG – Electronics, mechanics, robotics (www.qualysense.com), Glattbrugg.  

Qualysense is a worldwide industry pioneer focusing on delivering innovative high-end sorting solutions to achieve optimal processing, quality, and safety of agricultural products, according to biochemical and morphological traits. QualySense developed the QSorter robot which is capable of sorting grains, seeds, and beans at breathtaking speed. Download QualySense AG public profile here

Veronica Savu, Morphotonix Sàrl – Micro-nano (www.morphotonix.com), Lausanne (EPFL)

Morphotonix boosts brands’ revenue by preventing counterfeits or copies, with instant authentication of the original products by consumers and supply chain. The security elements are integrated directly into molded products, with zero-added manufacturing cost. Their uncopiable features are embedded in products during the standard manufacturing step, with no inks/labels/additives. From electronics to food&beverage primary packaging, the cutting-edge precision and innovative aestehtics of the Morphotonix solution emphasizes the product quality and engages the consumer. Download Morphotonix public profile here

Sandra Neumann, Ph.D. – Peripal AG – Medtech (www.peripal.com), Zurich (ETH)

Peripal focuses on patient aids for home care patients in the field of dialysis. Their mission is to develop and market patient aids that enable more patients worldwide to be treated safely in their homes, and thus lower healthcare costs. Download Peripal AG public profile here

Felix Adamczyk, Smart Home Technology GmbH – Hardware, software (https://smart-home-technology.ch), Zurich (ETH)

Smart Home Technology, an ETH Spin-off, creates smart and energy efficient appliances for homes and industries. They provide ultra-low power and secure solutions for connected devices with Zero Standby Power and Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC). With their business solution Smart@Home® they offer sensor-based and real-time data collection. Download Smart Home Technology GmbH public profile here

Duncan Sutherland, TwentyGreen – Biotech (www.twentygreen.com), Lucern (EPFL)

Today’s animal farming practices are unsustainable, and meeting the growing world demand for protein is a major challenge in our society. TwentyGreen produces a new probiotic feed supplement for sustainable animal farming, which exerts several beneficial effects simultaneously. Download TwentyGreen public profile here

Staffan Ahlgren, Tyre Recycling Solutions SA (TRS) – Cleantech (www.trs-ch.com), Gland (EPFL)

Tyre Recycling Solutions SA (“TRS”) has developed three technologies which, when combined, turn tyre recycling from a negative and fragmented value chain into a valuable business opportunity.  We enable recycled rubber from scrap tyres to become part of a circular economy. The TRS technologies cover unique added value steps of tyre recovery and recycling to produce a unique raw material: micronized devulcanized rubber powder with unique surface properties (TyreXol™) to allow it to be reintroduced into high-quality products. The Mission of TRS is to change the rules in a scrap tyre-free world, by delivering economically viable solutions to produce high-value and quality products out of recycled tyres. Download TRS public profile here

Check out the venture leaders China 2016 profiles online

venture leaders China partners

This year’s trip and business development program, worth the equivalent of CHF 10’000 per participant, is made possible thanks to the support of our long-time partners EPFL Innovation Park, EPF Lausanne, ETH Zurich, Gebert Rüf Stiftung, Canton de Vaud, the Office for Economy and Labour of Canton Zurich, the “Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year” program and swissnex China.

venture leaders China 2016 partners logo all-in-one

venturelab – World-class Startups. Swiss made.

venturelab_klventurelab is the supporting program for Switzerland’s best startup talents. Since 2004, startups have benefited from a unique international industry network and access to leading investors. Today, a great number of innovative venturelab startups are truly global ventures and they are strongly growing at an international level, i.e. Abionic, BioVersys, Covagen, Climeworks, Doodle, GetYourGuide, InSphero, L.E.S.S., QualySense and Poken. Last year, 69 venturelab alumni made it to the TOP100 Swiss startups. The fully private initiative venturelab is supported by industrial partners such as BKW, Swiss Post and Swisscom as well as successful founders who actively engage themselves as mentors or Business Angels for venturelab startups. venturelab’s international roadshows and business development programs such as venture leaders bring the best Swiss startups from Silicon Valley to Boston, from New York to Shanghai or from Pekin to Cape Town.


Management, French-speaking Switzerland:

Jordi Montserrat

+41 (78) 708 18 04


Media & communications, French-speaking Switzerland:

Lara Rossi

+41 (21) 533 09 85

+41 (79) 425 13 26


Management, German-speaking Switzerland:

Beat Schillig

+41 (71) 242 98 98


Media & communications, German-speaking Switzerland:

Tina Lohfing

+41 (71) 242 98 87

+41 (79) 961 87 61