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Co-creation: Shaping the future of the chemical industry together

September, 20th, 2023

On Monday, the ChemCologne Cooperation Day took place at the InnoDom of the University of Cologne under the motto "Co-creation: Shaping the future of the chemical industry together". ChemCologne had invited to the event together with the Gateway Excellence Start-up Center of the University of Cologne (ESC) and More than 100 participants from science, the chemical industry and the startup ecosystem accepted the invitation in perfect weather.

After the welcome talk with Christoph Kappenhagen, CEO of ChemCologne, and Marc Kley, Managing Director of ESC, Annette Schmidt, Transfer Officer of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at the University of Cologne, discussed with Slim Chiha, Co-Founder of PROSION Therapeutics and with Stefan Weber of Chiha, in particular, advocated better IP transfer processes at universities and entrepreneurship as a topic of curricular offerings in natural science courses.

In the corporate pitch session, Jürgen Sehl and Juergen Giegerich from Siemens and Dr. Jens Busse from Evonik Venture Capital reported on how their companies support startups in establishing themselves on the market.

The heart of the event was the startup pitch session, in which six teams vied for the audience's favor. ChemInnovation, mia GmbH, ALTEVA, Impuls Energy Trading GmbH, Cyclize and PipePredict showed how they intend to help shape the future of the chemical industry with their ideas.

Maike Lambarth of Cyclize emerged as the winner of the public vote and was able to take home the trophy. Her startup enables the carbon circular economy. Instead of natural gas or coal, Cyclize uses mixed plastic waste, which has been incinerated up to now, together with CO2 to produce non-fossil synthesis gas from it.

Gateway alumni Dennis Prausse, co-founder of Nerou, and Dr. Alexander Müller, managing partner and co-founder of SUMTEQ GmbH, reflected that in addition to perseverance, good networks, luck and the right timing are needed to make ideas last.