Nominees for the German Founders Award in 2016

On 5 July 2016, the German Founders Award will be presented for the 15th time to promising business start-ups and successful entrepreneurs in the start-up scene. Here are the nominees. - Start-ups


Physicist Raino Petricevic and business economist Clemens Launer met at the Innovation and Founders Centre in Würzburg. Together they developed highly sensitive sensors that detect early on when car or aircraft parts and engines wear out. Today, over 60 leading companies, including Airbus and Bosch Rexroth, are customers of the iNDTact start-up, which was founded in 2013.


Okinlab in Saarbrücken draws attention to itself with elegant curved shapes and custom-made designs. Since 2013,, the start-up’s online configurator, enables everyone to design their own affordable furniture. The intelligent plug-in system of architect Nikolas Feth and business economist Alessandro Quaranta guarantees smooth and swift assembly without glue or screws.


An ideas contest in Silicon Valley provided the impetus for the ProGlove start-up from Munich. Its intelligent work glove saves valuable working time, because sensors issue a warning when the employee makes a mistake. Entrepreneurs Thomas Kirchner, Alexander Grots, Jonas Girardet and Paul Günther have found buyers primarily in the car industry.


Lemonaid’s culinary business idea was inspired by the travels of entrepreneur Paul Bethke: the economist drank lemonades with real fruit juice and freshly brewed iced tea in Sri Lanka. Working with Jakob Berndt and Felix Langguth, he brought the good taste to Germany in 2009. Since then five cents for every bottle sold is donated to the company’s own aid projects – meanwhile a total of over one million euros.


Every game has its rules – and every gamer his or her own ideas of the perfect hardware. Founded by entrepreneur René Korte in 2007, the Roccat company offers gaming enthusiasts individually configurable keyboards, headphones and mice. Roccat is so well known on the highly competitive computer games market that fans have even had themselves tattooed with the logo.


Scopis surgical assistance systems enable increased precision during complicated operations with the aid of augmented reality technology. Operations can be precisely planned on the basis of MRT images thanks to the innovation developed by Bartosz Kosmecki, Christopher Özbek and Andreas Reutter. Their innovation, which has already received several patents, is based on years of research by an interdisciplinary research group at the Charité Hospital in Berlin and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.

Presentation of the German Founders Award on 5 July 2016