Each year the World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers community recognizes innovative early-stage companies that are poised to have a significant impact on business and society. The following pioneers are scheduled to participate in the Forum’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions, which takes place September 18-20 in Tianjin, China.
WHAT IT DOES: Developed a computer vision technology, enabling machines to ”see” in much the same way that the human brain processes images from the retina. Applications include making interactions between humans and industrial robots safer and providing superior guidance for autonomous cars.
WHAT IT DOES: Enables companies to design and control their own artificial intelligence tools, using data of any type, and deploying at scale on any commodity hardware, from data centers to the Internet of Things.
WHAT IT DOES: Develops autonomous mobile robots that provideon-demand automation for warehouses, factories and distribution sectors. Cloud-based software allows robots to be operational within 24 hours. It counts SoftBank and Sway Ventures among its investors.
FOOD & AGRICULTURE
WHAT IT DOES: Adds extra peel to the surface of fresh produce to naturally reinforce a plant’s own covering and slow the rate of water loss and oxidation, the primary causes of spoilage. Produce promises to stay fresh two to three times longer, with the aim of producing better quality food and less waste.
WHAT IT DOES: This MIT spin-off helps factory owners turn their workflows into digital processes that collect data from operations, with the aim of increasing the team’s performance and improving the production process.
FOOD & AGRICULTURE
WHAT IT DOES: Field-scale indoor vertical farms that use machine learning and Internet of Things technology to grow foods using 1% of the water and land used in traditional farming, without pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, or GMOs. Investors include SoftBank, Finistere Ventures and Data Collective.
WHAT IT DOES: : Provides digital identity and data management for physical products, helping consumer-product manufacturers gain efficiency in their supply chains and deliver digital services directly to their customers. Its technology works with any form of standard connectivity.
WHAT IT DOES: Headed by ex-pilotAndré Borschberg, the company has developed an electric propulsion system for the aeronautics sector, with the goal of improving the environmental footprint and cost of air transportation.
WHAT IT DOES: Offers ”deception technologies” that use digital decoys to trick hackers targeting valuable assets. Its products promise to enable organizations to detect infiltration inside a company’s perimeter and automate counter-attacks.
WHAT ITDOES: The Ahmedabad-based agri-tech startup has developed a collaborative platform that uses machine learning to provide smallholder farmers with recommendations about good agricultural practices. The aim is to reduce the cost of cultivation and optimize crop growth.
WHAT IT DOES: Offers short-term funding solutions for African small-to-medium-sized businesses in the trade and commodities sectors who are unable to finance the cost of trade. It also offers e-commerce and logistics support and flexible warehousing.
BLUE VISION LABS
WHAT IT DOES: Develops augmented reality and machine perception technology. Applications include gaming and self-driving cars. It counts Google Ventures, Accel, and Horizon Ventures among its investors.
WHAT IT DOES: A lithium-ion supercell technology with a unique design that promises to deliver high energy and improved safety at lowcost. The company has been awarded funding for a demonstration project to help the state of New York meet its clean energy goals.
WHAT IT DOES: Pymetrics offers human resources services based on neuroscience and algorithms. Its technology identifies behavioral signals to match candidates to jobs and aims to eliminate discriminatory recruitment biases. Clients include Tesla, Unilever and LinkedIn.
WHAT IT DOES: Technology that translates data into insightful, contextually-relevant natural language narratives for enterprise. Customers include Credit Suisse, Deloitte, MasterCard and members of the U.S. intelligence community.
WHAT IT DOES: A regulation-as-a-service platform that helps banks and other financial institutions comply with changes in financial regulation. Its software automates regulatory data requirements for financial institutions and minimizes the cost of change involved with each new iteration.
WHAT IT DOES: Simplifies design, development, delivery, and management of enterprise-grade AI systems for industries such as banking, healthcare, and e-commerce.
WHAT IT DOES: Provides blockchain technology for the finance industry. Customers include Visa, NASDAQ, and Citigroup as well as startups building products for the finance industry.
WHATITDOES: Uses AI and Big Data to deliver predictive analytics of governmental action that impacts industries. It offers real-time understanding of government action and predicts likely outcomes of pending legislation, for attorneys, lobbyists, and compliance professionals.
WHAT IT DOES: Offers quantum computing-based cybersecurity encryption options such as random key generators and cryptographic keys. Customers include the U.S. State Department, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman.
WHAT IT DOES: Creates life like, emotionally responsive artificial beings with personality and character, opening the door to a new era of human-style customer experience in sectors such as automotive, financial services and banking, health care and media.
WHAT IT DOES: A predictive analytics software-as-a-service platform for industries such as aviation, construction, mining, rail and energy, that captures data from infrastructures and equipment, recommending actions in real time to improve performance, reliability and security.
WHAT IT DOES: Developing a high speed, intercity transportation system. It crowdsources its research and development from engineers working at places such as NASA, Tesla, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin as well as the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California.
WHAT IT DOES: Produces bio-leather that can be brewed on equipment found in large commercial fermentation facilities. The company has partnered with theEuropean chemicals giant Evonik to help it scale production and make its bio-leathers available to designers of luxury goods.
WHAT ITDOES: Developed a generator that pulls water vapor from the air to harvest drinking water. Its atmospheric water generator produces clean, safe, drinking water at 250Wh/L which correlates to four liters per 1Kw, or under two cents per liter.
WHAT IT DOES: Develops artificial intelligence applications based oncomputer vision technology for enterprises, particularly in retail and health care. It is backed by Softbank in China, and was recently named a 2018 Cool Vendor for AI in Computer Vision by the global research firm Gartner.
WHAT IT DOES: A legal research platform. Its brief-analysis software enables attorneys to jumpstart their research by offering strong keyword queries on any kind of litigation document.
WHAT IT DOES: Designs systems made out of soft material that can grasp and manipulate items with human hand-like dexterity. Applications include surgery, e-commerce, and advanced manufacturing. Among investors are Scale Ventures Partners and robotics giant ABB.
WHAT IT DOES: Predictive maintenance software for process industries such as chemicals, petrochemicals, oil and gas, and metallurgy. It uses machine learning to spot system failures and offers alerts to prevent shutdowns. It was acquired in June by Germany’s Samson.
WHAT IT DOES: : A technology that analyzes the massive body of medical research to speed development of new drugs while drastically reducing the cost of such discoveries. It has also developed a platform that optimizes the access and use of medical data.