IMD Startup News
*2022 MBA Startup winner*

Lumiphase awarded for its breakthrough in data communication

The winner of the ZKB Pionierpreis Technopark 2022 is Lumiphase. Lumiphase’s optical semiconductor chips offer higher data throughput at lower cost and using less power than conventional silicon photonics chips. The start-up is already working with the key providers of optical communication networks.


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*2015 MBA Startup winner*

First-in-Human Use of ONWARD’s Implantable Neurostimulator

ONWARD’s ARC implantable pulse generator (IPG) is designed to stimulate the spinal cord to restore movement and autonomic function for people with spinal cord injury and other conditions that affect mobility. This first implant is a major milestone in ONWARD’s development of implantable neurostimulation technology to help people with spinal cord injury.


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*2019 EMBA Startup winner*

Fast forward for Aurora’s Grid

Driven by a booming energy storage market, Aurora's Grid has just experienced the most active 9 months in its history. Thanks to its novel solution, the EPFL Innovation Park startup led by Dimitri Torregrossa helps reduce CO2 emissions by 40%, extend battery lifetime by 40% and increase revenues of 50%.


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*2019 MBA Startup winner*

Robotic startup Isochronic closes CHF2 million seed round

Isochronic developing highly innovative pick & place robots, closed its seed financing round. The funds will be used for product development as well as first industrial installations based on Isochronic’s technology.


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*2021 MBA Startup Winner*

RetinAI Discovery achieves FDA clearance

RetinAI Medical AG received the U.S. Food and Drug Administration 510(k) clearance of RetinAI Discovery, paving the way for the startup to enter the U.S market. The image and data management platform enables next-level interoperability across the clinical and clinical study ecosystems in ophthalmology.


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*2012 EMBA Startup winner*
BioVersys' BV100 advances into phase II clinical trials
After close to 1.5 years, Bioversys has completed three Phase 1 clinical trials for BV100, the company’s most advanced research and development program addressing hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). The results provided a favourable safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetic profile of the drug candidate.


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*2020 EMBA Startup winner*

Menhir Photonics and partner awarded $1.25M grant from US Air Force

Vescent, the US distribution partner of Swiss startup Menhir Photonics has been awarded a contract endowed with a $1.25M grant from the Air Force to develop a multi-gigahertz optical frequency comb in 18-months. This contract enables Menhir Photonics to offer a new product within 18 months, which will expand its market potential by nearly a factor 2.


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*2018/ 2017 / 2021 EMBA Startup winners*

Global players join forces with Swiss startups

Dotphoton, Haelixa and CompPair have inked deals with established companies including camera manufacturer Hamamatsu, textile machinery specialist Rieter, and Decathlon, the world's largest sporting goods retailer. The partnerships will help the start-ups to scale faster.


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IMD Startup Competition 2021/2022

Seize your chance now!

Could your startup benefit from highly talented, experienced and motivated individuals who have been carefully screened to participate in two of the most selective and rigorous business programs in the world?

If so, this competition provides a unique opportunity for you to get the help and insights of participants in IMD’s MBA and Executive MBA programs.

This offer is open to all Swiss-based startups and runs in collaboration with the Swiss government's Innosuisse-Swiss Innovation Agency, VentureKick, MassChallenge Switzerland, Verve and Amazon Web Services.

We select up to 38 different startups to work with IMD MBAs and Executive MBAs.

We are looking for early-stage companies that have a solid chance of market success, have a team that is curious and willing to open themselves up to a small group of management "students", are pleased to enter into both strategic and business model discussions, and can provide a good learning opportunity for our participants with timing that aligns with the IMD programs.


November 8, 2021: Registration Deadline


December 4, 2021: Formal notification to all selected startups


December 10, 2021: Deadline for the selected startups to accept or decline the IMD offer

Grow your business, test your concepts, get new insights:
work with our MBA and EMBA participants

Many ventures got lasting value from working with our MBAs and EMBAs. In the most recent Swiss Top 100 report, IMD-supported startups captured 39 of the 100 places, including 3 out of the top 10, and five of the top 25 scaleups! Do you want to be in that group next year?

As additional support for Swiss startups, and to help the Swiss entrepreneurial ecosystem, winners of the IMD Startup Competition will now receive a CHF 5,000 Startup Scholarship to be used to participate in any of IMD's online or open programs!

And this year we’re pleased to announce that Amazon Web Services is partnering with us once again and will support the winners of the IMD Startup Competition: “From Airbnb to Zocdoc, the world's top startups build on AWS. But they didn't do it alone. So whether you need help solving a technical challenge, hiring the right engineers, or finalizing a fundraising round, AWS has all the resources you need to get started. There’s a reason more startups build on AWS than any other provider: AWS is there to help you succeed, from inception to IPO. With this partnership, the Startups winning the IMD Startup Competition get access to the network of opportunities through AWS Startups.

Recent Winners of the Startup Competition

Grow your business

Boost your chances of funding and success

Test your concepts

Get fresh input on your business ideas

Get new insights

Gather new information with the help of IMD talent

Executive MBA project opportunity
  • Up to eighteen startups will be chosen to work with three Executive MBA classes
  • Split into small teams each working with a dedicated startup, our EMBAs help analyze and challenge your business plans and company strategies
  • Their ultimate goal is to make a pitch on your behalf to venture capitalists and angels in Silicon Valley in September or November (with the presence of your founders)
Location EMBA 1st Intake EMBA 2nd Intake EMBA 3rd Intake
At IMD Lausanne

June 21, 2022 (pm)

June 24, 2022 (am) (optional)

May 3, 2022 (pm)

May 6, 2022 (am) (optional)

October 4, 2022 (pm)

October 7, 2022 (am) (optional)

In Palo Alto, California Sept 11-16, 2022

Sept 18-23, 2022

Nov 13-18, 2022


Meet with EMBAs @ IMD, Lausanne
Collaborate at a distance with EMBAs
Travel to Silicon Valley with the EMBAs
MBA project opportunity
  • Up to 20 startups will receive the support of our MBA class
  • Split into small teams, each working with a dedicated startup, our MBAs put in an average of 6-8 hours per person on this project each week, for a total support of at least 500-600 work-hours
Dates Description
January 21, 2022 MBA-selected companies meet with their MBA teams at IMD in Lausanne that evening
January 22, 2022 In-company introductory visits for MBA participants at the company's site (wherever possible or desirable)
January 21 - April 11, 2022 MBA-selected companies collaborate with their MBA teams


Meet with MBAs @ IMD, Lausanne
Face-to-face & Virtual Collaboration
Mutually agreed upon project
Contact us

  Blandine Malhet

  Program Manager

  Executive MBA Department, IMD

  » Email


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