Convince others of your business idea in five minutes – nine companies did exactly that last Monday, 26th August, at Villeroy & Boch’s first Start-up Pitch Day in Mettlach, Germany. The start-ups were given the opportunity during the Pitch Day to present themselves and their business idea to the German company with the aim of starting a cooperation. This event attracted a great deal of interest: Villeroy & Boch received a huge number of applications and invited start-ups whose products and solutions seemed to best fit their Tableware or Bathroom and Wellness core business and which in turn could digitally expand these areas. The Start-up Pitch Day was also met with great internal interest at Villeroy & Boch, shown by the large number of employees who went to the event, asked the start-ups questions after their pitches and chose the audience winner by smartphone.
The jury, consisting of Frank Göring (Chairman of the Management Board, Villeroy & Boch AG), Dr Markus Warncke (CFO, Villeroy & Boch AG), Michael Magenreuter and Dr Peter Domma (Managing Directors, Villeroy & Boch Innovations GmbH) and Sebastian Hof (Digital Strategist New Business Models & Innovations), ultimately chose the start-up Sentin as the winner of the Pitch Day. Sentin creates software that uses artificial intelligence to recognise the tiniest of defects during the production process. Second and third place went to the companies Werkbad and Kulero, with one making customised furniture and the other one customised edible cutlery. Moreover, Kulero also won the audience award. How the participants benefit: Villeroy & Boch looks closely at all the companies to see if cooperation is possible, the three winners also received prize money.
Dr Peter Domma declared the first Start-up Pitch Day a success, “We're always looking for good ideas. And the Start-up Pitch Day certainly provided us with some exciting inspiration, which we intend to follow up on. Start-ups are also welcome to approach us with their business idea throughout the year, not just at events such as the Pitch Day.”
Villeroy & Boch Innovations GmbH has been a holding company of Villeroy & Boch AG since May of this year. The aim of the company is to invest in innovative start-ups or cooperate with them. It is always looking for young companies whose products and solutions fit strategically with the core business of Villeroy & Boch AG.
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Villeroy & Boch:
Villeroy & Boch is one of the world's leading premium brands for ceramic products. The family business, which was founded in 1748 and is headquartered in Mettlach/Germany, stands for innovation, tradition and exceptional style. As a renowned lifestyle brand, Villeroy & Boch offers products from the sectors Bathroom and Wellness and Tableware, and is active in 125 countries.