Welcome to the 6th edition of the i4Challenge
Are you ready to take your innovative idea to the next level?
The i4Challenge program is now open for SMEs, startups, and individuals with emerging technologies that create, process, and exchange data to deliver products and services to consumers.
We’re seeking innovative solutions in fields such as cloud computing, mobility, robotics, AR/VR, IoT, blockchain, quantum technology, automation, machine learning & AI, and more.
Applicants from Switzerland, Grand-Est France, and Baden-Württemberg Germany can submit prototypes, products or ideas to be evaluated by industry leaders.
Don’t miss out on this chance to showcase your cutting-edge solutions and join a community of like-minded innovators.
Apply now to the i4Challenge program and turn your vision into reality.
Expand your horizons: connect with the best and brightest in Industry 4.0 and benefit from specialized programs of universities and high schools
Accelerate your product or service
Innovate with confidence: 50+ hours of expert coaching in the accelerator Switzerland Innovation Park Jura for new ideas and 10 hours mentoring for innovative solutions
Enhance your visibility
Share your vision: present your ideas to industry leaders at Basel Area Business & Innovation conferences
Be4.0 Salon d’Industrie du Futur Mulhouse
Show case your innovative solution to the tri-national manufacturing industry
Unlock exclusive benefits: get 1 year free access to the Socitété Industrielle de Mulhouse SIM
Feedback from top experts
Judged by the experts: our jury consists of 25 leaders of the industry and academia
See what others are saying about the i4Challenge.
How to apply
Eligible are applicants from Switzerland, Grand-Est France, and Baden-Württemberg Germany. Application accepted in German, French, and English.
- Feedback from experts
- Supporting during Pitchday
- Switzerland Innovation Park Basel Area
- Feedback from experts
- Innovative solutions: exhibition space at BE 4.0 Mulhouse
- New Idea: 6 months acceleration in Switzerland Innovation Park Basel Area Jura
- And much more
- Visibility and access to the market
- Access to Oberrheinregion
- Mentoring and workshops
- Coaching from senior industry experts
- Turn your idea into a business model
Dipl. Ing. (FH)
Many years of management experience at executive level
Managing Director CEO, ARNOLD IT Systems GmbH
Lecturer Researcher IUT de Mulhouse at the University of Haute Alsace
Many years of experience as a researcher
Prof. Dr. Manuel Hess
Head of the St.Gallen Startup Navigator Lab at the Institute for Technology Management, University of St.Gallen
Engaged in applied research on the transformation process from startups to young companies
Co-author of the St.Gallen Startup Navigator and lecturer for students, entrepreneurs and managers on the topic of entrepreneurship
Dr. Jürgen Jähnert
- External innovation expert for the European Commission and the Spanish Ministry of Science and Education
- Member of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Information Technology and Computer Science at the University of Stuttgart
Master of Science
Many years of experience as project manager and product development manager
Head of Product Development
Peter B. Meier
Vice President Industry 4.0
Responsible for a strategically created department with focus on Industry 4.0.
Member of the Executive Board
- CEO of the company Productec SA
- 30 years of experience in the B2B environment in various roles
- Founder and CEO of ValueOn AG; founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of TimeWinner AG
- Investor and business angel at startup companies in the services & ICT sector; entrepreneur for 19 years
- Project Competence AG was awarded the certificate “Best Business Transformation” by ASCO 2018 for the second time
- Business Unit Manager at Actemium Romandie
- Many years of experience as an automation engineer
- Active for more than 30 years in the chemical – pharmaceutical – biotechnology industry in the region
Prof. Dr. Marc K. Peter
- Heads the Digital Transformation Competence Centre at the FHNW School of Business in Olten. The center offers research, consulting, and educational services around the digital transformation to help organizations and employees develop and successfully implement digital growth strategies.Important studies and publications: www.kmu-transformation.ch, www.digitale-transformation-artikel.ch, www.arbeitswelt-zukunft.ch, www.digitales-marketing-kmu.ch, www.it-sicherheit-kmu.ch
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Franz Quint
- Professor for Communications Engineering at Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences since 2002
- VP for Research at Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences since 2017
- Previously employed at Daimler-Benz Aeropsace / EADS in the field of communications and radar as a developer/department head.
- His research interests are digital signal and image evaluation, 3D vision, and communications engineering. He is a reviewer for international journals and conferences, for the DAAD, and for the accreditation of study programs.
- Since the beginning of 2021, he has been the spokesperson for the tri-national university alliance TriRhenaTech of the universities of applied sciences on the Upper Rhine.
- Head of Department | DRP Process & Test Engineering Endress+Hauser Flow
- 20 years of experience in electronics and electrical engineering (development QA, production)
- 13 years of management experience at executive, departmental and project management level
- 3 years i4Challenge Jury Member
- Member of the board of directors at “Sichtbar Online Marketing AG”
- Part-time journalist for the “Handelszeitung”, and others
Many years of experience in project management for the design / production and maintenance of industrial IT systems.
Industrial Director Eiffage Energie Système – Clemessy since 2019, in charge of supporting operational entities in their innovation and R&D process and transformation towards the industry of the future.
Member of the Innovation and Digital Offers Committees of the Eiffage Energie Système branch and of the Scientific Committee of the Eiffage group.
- Many years of experience as project manager and member of the executive board in the areas of IT and operations for companies in the health care, FMCG and finance industries
- Focused on international business areas and digitization projects
- Delegate for Economic Promotion, Republic and Canton of Jura
- Training in the field of banking supplemented by a diploma in business economics from the University of Applied Sciences HES.
- 10 years in the banking sector (financial analyst for SMEs), 8 years in vocational training (administrator of a training fund).
- Since 2010 at the Jura Economic Development Agency: support for companies, networking, collaborative projects, export assistance and support through financial aid for company creation and development projects.
- Since 2019, head of the Jura Economic Promotion structure.
Dr. Thomas Hediger
- Dipl. Chem.-Ing. ETH, EMBA ZHAW
- Board member of the IBISCUS group, co-owner and co-CEO of Savoy Hediger Management GmbH
- International experienced CEO with focus on the pharmaceutical and hospitality industry
- More than 25 years C-level experience in international and mid-sized companies
- Experienced board member in various companies
- Eager to share his experience and to further enhance the development of the industry 4.0
- Graduated in 2009 with a degree in industrial engineering in electrical engineering and information technology.
- 2009 Project management at Endress+Hauser in the area of process automation projects.
- 2014 Master of Business Administration (MBA) and then took on various management positions at Endress+Hauser, most recently with global responsibility for the Group-wide “Energy Solutions” business area.
- Changed to Uhlmann Pac-Systeme in 2016. Head of Technical Sales for software and automation solutions. Since January 2017, as Head of Digitalisation, she has been responsible for the company’s global digitalization strategy and since summer 2019, she has been responsible for the Digital Solutions business area/business unit of Uhlmann Pac-Systeme GmbH.
- Since 2023 GFT Integrated Systems GmbH Konstanz, Chief Revenue Officer Industrial – Platforms and Services
Dr.-Ing. Frank Schönung
- Since 2012 in the SEW research department responsible for:
Logistics solutions with mobile logistics assistants
Production concepts based on mobile assistance systems
Urban logistics and transport logistics
Knowledge network and university cooperation
- Previously: Head of Department for Materials Handling at the Institute for Materials Handling and Logistics Systems at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Dr. Urs Ch. Hofmeier
- Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry, University of Basel; MBA, IMD Lausanne
- Enthusiastic and experienced to use the social changes towards sustainability and digital transformation as a basis for innovative services and products.
- Dedicated to guiding young entrepreneurs on their path to becoming successful leaders.
- Nina Habicht is a tech entrepreneur and has successfully bootstrapped companies in software development and AI as an early partner, Head of Marketing & Business Development and CEO. She supports startups and companies with strategic advice, growth hacking, business development and AI sales. Previously, she worked for international companies such as Bayer, Tamedia and Zühlke Group.Current mandates:
• Partner and conversation designer at Paixon
• Jury at Best of Swiss Apps
• Guest lecturer for chatbots and voice assistants at ZHAW, IT project management at HSLU
• Female Digital Innovator Award from Femtrepreneurs (2020)
• Founder & CEO of www.voicetechhub.com
- GRUNER&FRIENDS is an international practice specializing in architecture, urbanism, research and design.
- The Creative Lab pushes beyond Architecture via multidisciplinary projects; by combining domains such as Art, Design, Film (with GRUNERFILMS), Research and Technology.
- Realization of big scale projects with AI design process and BIM, such as the Data Center next to Zurich Airport.
Patrice is a jury member of the i4Challenge, discover more about our offering
- Program Manager Innovation
- Trained as an engineer at the EPFL in microtechnology
- Several years as an engineer at Philip Morris for the coordination of international projects
- Trainer of teenagers
- Since 2021, at arcm as Program Manager of the Innovation Booster – Microtech at 50%: implementation and operational management of the programme, support to companies, networking, support to collaborative project teams
- MBA INSEAD, MSc of Business Administration HU-Berlin
- Responsible for the digital transformation, sales- and marketing strategy and M&A. Prior to her engagement at Phoenix Mecano she worked for Körber Group, Bosch Building Technologies and Roland Berger Strategy Consultants
- Advisor to the Equity Alliance, a NYC based VC fund investing in underrepresented founders
- Active angel investor in Industry 4.0 startups, Climate Tech, Hardware and SaaS business models
Tatjana De Kerros
Founder and Managing Partner at Mir Capital Partner- a boutique investment bank specialized in assisting European industrial, aerospace, defense and energy SMEs. Prior Tatjana was Managing Partner at Oak Universe, a EUR 1bn AUM Industry 4.0 PE fund, and previously led innovation and corporate venturing for Swiss SME Ricola in Laufen BL. With over 15 years across private equity, venture capital and M&A, as a bi-national Swiss/ French, Tatjana is passionate about reinforcing the innovation and growth capacities of both ecosystems into world-leaders.