INCUBA Award 2023: Here are the startup and investor of the year in the Central Denmark Region
On Thursday, October 5, the INCUBA award was presented for the third time during the annual investor event Aarhus Investor Summit, which took place at Aarhus City Hall.
The award aims to highlight startups and investors in the Central Denmark Region that create significant results and contribute to pushing the local ecosystem forward.
Quantum startup Kvantify and business angel Claus Hansen won the award and can now call themselves 'Startup of the Year' and 'Investor of the Year'.
Startup of the Year: Kvantify
Kvantify is a Danish quantum startup founded in 2022 as a spinout from Aarhus University. In just 1½ years, they have become the Nordic region's leading company in quantum technology and high-performance computing. They have also secured impressive funding, including a successful DKK 20 million round led by EIFO.
"The story of Kvantify, which originated at Aarhus University, is impressive. Kvantify has the potential to become a market leader in their field. In particular, their technology enables the financial and pharmaceutical industries to significantly increase competitiveness through quantum computing. By providing solutions that can improve the efficiency and speed of complex calculations, Kvantify contributes to strengthening the competitive position of companies in these sectors. With the INCUBA award, we want to celebrate innovation with scalable ambitions and therefore we are pleased to name Kvantify as startup of the year," says jury member Søren Grønbæk Nielsen, Business Development Manager at EIFO and adds:
"Kvantify also wins the INCUBA award because they inspire other startups with their inventiveness and innovation. Their business potential extends globally and they have already achieved remarkable results in a short time. Kvantify's young founders are true role models for the Danish entrepreneurial scene, and they show that we here in the region can be proud to be the center of innovation and entrepreneurship."
Kvantify participated in the final along with three other startups: Battman Energy, PlanetDairy and SulfiLogger.
Investor of the Year: Claus Hansen
Life science investor Claus Hansen is a self-taught serial entrepreneur, board member, approved VF Matching Investor and - not least - winner of the INCUBA Award 2023 as Investor of the Year. Claus dares to invest in a capital-intensive, high-risk life science industry, and he is also a familiar face on the Aarhus startup scene, where he actively participates in all types of events and pitch events for startups.
"Claus Hansen is a remarkable investor who specializes in backing knowledge-intensive startups in the healthcare sector. With his background in this industry, he brings invaluable expertise and experience to the table. Claus Hansen receives the INCUBA award for his hard work and tireless commitment to the entrepreneurial community, where he has found his niche and makes a significant difference in the early stages of the startups he supports. Claus is an investor who inspires others with his knowledge and experience, his advice and perspectives are valued and when he speaks, people listen. This further emphasizes his importance as a prominent investor in the entrepreneurial community, along with the many warm nominations we received with Claus' name on it," says jury member Jan Snogdal, Partner at DLA Piper.
Claus Hansen participated in the final together with Christian Vinther from Founderment and angel investor Pernille Lynggaard Frandsen.
The INCUBA Award is established, funded and run by INCUBA A/S. It was awarded for the first time in 2021 to the 'Startup of the Year' and 'Investor of the Year' in the Central Denmark Region. The award comes with a travel grant worth DKK 35,000 for a study and networking trip to one of the world's innovation meccas in late summer 2024.
The winners are selected by a jury consisting of representatives from the startup ecosystem in Aarhus and will be announced at the Aarhus Investor Summit organized by INCUBA. After an open nomination process, the jury first narrowed the field to a number of nominees and then selected the finalists and a winner in each category.
In total, 32 startups and 23 investors were nominated.
This year's jury consisted of:
- Jakob Vangsøe Hansen, Danske Bank
- Lars Louring, Danish Business Angels
- Benjamin Hoffmann, Potter Clarkson
- Jan Snogdal, DLA Piper
- Søren Grønbæk Nielsen, EIFO
- Soren Boel Pedersen, City of Aarhus
- Mai Louise Agerskov, INCUBA