July 3, 2020

CHF 200,000 to help two SMEs

Neuchâtel, 03 July 2020. CSEM has expanded the CSEM Digital Journey competition in order to help Swiss SMEs recover from the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, two Swiss companies instead of one will each get CHF 100,000 worth of CSEM’s technical expertise so that they can move forward on a digitalization project.

CSEM Digital Journey, which was launched in 2018, aims to promote digitalization among Swiss SMEs. It helps companies with fewer than 250 employees achieve their digital goals by giving them access to CSEM’s technologies. The winning company, selected by a panel of judges, receives support and advice worth CHF 100,000 from CSEM’s experts.

This year, two Swiss companies will benefit from CSEM’s backing rather than just one. “We hope this will help SMEs get back on the digital track following the COVID-19 lockdown,” says CSEM’s CEO Mario El-Khoury. “After all, their foreign competitors are moving ahead!”

A smart spring that can prevent failures              

2019 winner Federnfabrik Schmid drew on CSEM’s support to develop smart springs capable of predicting their own life span and anticipating repair and maintenance needs. “CSEM’s know-how was crucial for us,” says the company’s CEO Albert Enste. “We specialize in spring technology, but we didn’t have the expertise we needed in energy recovery, miniaturization or digitalization. Thanks to CSEM, we hope to make machine failures and costly production outages a thing of the past.”

Tangible results

The Crystalball home energy management system, which won the 2018 prize, is about to hit the market. The commercial version is currently being tried out for the first time in an apartment building, where it is optimizing the energy consumption of eight separate apartments simultaneously.

Access to CSEM’s tech expertise

SMEs wanting to take part in CSEM Digital Journey have until 4 September 2020 to submit their applications. The names of the five finalists will be published in October, and the winners of the 2020 prize will be announced on Swiss Digital Day in November.

For more information: CSEM Digital Journey

In addition to this prize, CSEM has expanded the range of services it provides to SMEs. Upon request, companies can now spend a day with an expert who will give them advice on their technological development.

The prize panel

  • Chair: Georges Kotrotsios, Member of the Executive Board and Head of Marketing & Business Development, CSEM
  • Silvio Bonaccio, Head of Tech Transfer, ETH Zurich
  • Nicolas Bürer, Managing Director, Digital Switzerland
  • Marc Gruber, Vice President for Innovation, EPFL
  • Raphaël Rollier, Head of Innovation and Product Management, Swiss Federal Office of Topography Swisstopo
  • Robert Rudolph, Member of the Executive Board and Head of Digitalization & Innovation, Swissmem
  • Christian Wasserfallen, Swiss National Councilor
Press release