Integreat, Nui Care and StartSomewhere at OYW Munich 2021
Strong social start-ups from Bavaria in the final
(15 July 2021) In yesterday’s final of the Social Business Challenge Munich selected young Bavarian companies with a focus on sustainability and social issues presented their work to the jury. Integreat, Nui Care, and StartSomewhere were chosen as the three winners. They now have the chance to present themselves at the One Young World Summit next week.
The OYW Munich Summit, featuring over 2,000 young people from more than 190 countries, takes place from 22–25 July in Munich, this time with a mix of live and virtual formats. One Young World brings young leaders and activists together from all over the world in order to accelerate sustainable and social change.
A group of OYW Ambassadors from Munich issued the original call for applicants for the . The aim was to find start-ups from Bavaria that pursue business concepts in line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The three winners will now meet personalities from all over the world at the upcoming conference.
The jury’s final decision proved difficult, as the applicants included many exciting and committed young companies. These ranged from non-profit organizations started on a voluntary basis to start-ups seeking to make fundamental, positive changes with their business concept.
For this reason, you can find details of both the winners and all other finalists below.
Bavaria and Munich have a lot to offer in the area of social entrepreneurship. The jury were most impressed by Integreat, Nui Care, and StartSomewhere. The jury members were drawn from the City of Munich, One Young World, Yunus Social Business, BonVenture and FASE as well as from the competition’s organizers, the Munich OYW Ambassadors.
Don't miss them, if you are attending One Young World! The winners will present themselves on Saturday, 14 July at 1 pm on the Huawei stage.
The three winners are:
Integreat is an app for new arrivals in a city, available in multiple languages and offering rapid access to local information on, for example, public transport, attending school, finding work, health, social benefits, and tips on where to obtain advice and assistance.
The digital platform, which is also used by the City of Munich, was developed by students and researchers at the TU Munich and the University of Augsburg. Started on a purely voluntary basis, Integreat is now a non-profit organization with 22 employees and 20 volunteers. More than 70 international cities and districts already use the open source app.
NUI runs an app which provides a chatbot to assist family members in a caring role to master the many challenges they face when providing home care. An “intelligent chatbot” adapts to the individual case, offers advice, and saves the carer, who may already be under great strain, from having to do additional complicated research. NUI Care was founded by Christian Ehl and Markus C. Müller; the growing team now consists of 13 people.
NUI is funded by health insurance companies and employers, which provide the app to their customers or employees with care responsibilities. The aim is also to ensure that people who need care can obtain it at home for as long as possible instead of having to go to a nursing home.
Start Somewhere is a non-profit limited liability company in Munich with a lot of experience in development work, above all in Kenya. Founder and architect Oliver von Malm developed reusable hollow concrete blocks known as TwistBlocks. They improve housing in slums and can even be moved to different locations, making them ideal for use in areas where people without property have to reside temporarily. They can be locally produced, leading to job creation.
As a non-profit organization Start Somewhere also provides financial support to two schools with a total of 800 pupils in the Kibera slum. A two-floor school has also been constructed using TwistBlocks.
Other equally exciting finalists
The following companies also featured with their wonderful concepts:
Communitree consists of a team of students from the TU Munich. They have developed an app which uses gaming to motivate people to actively participate in the fight against climate change. Various groups are addressed, from those consciously engaged in climate protection to others who are less involved. The aim is to raise climate protection awareness and generate funds for afforestation.
FoodHub is a new supermarket concept in Munich which is organized as a cooperative and sells seasonal, organic food, and sustainable products to members. The team, which included the recently deceased German entrepreneur and pioneer in the ecological production of food Karl Schweisfurth, is based on similar models in the USA and France. As all members work a few hours, the projects also aims to strengthen community ties.
Today’s construction industry suffers from inefficiency, labor shortages, and poor safety standards. KEWAZO is working to overcome these problems by digitalizing construction using robotics and data analysis. The strong, interdiscplinary team, which met during an entrepreneurship course at UnternehmerTUM, combines expertise from robotics, economics, automation, IT, and engineering.
MyCollective is a coaching and leadership program that supports members – both men and women – who are on family leave so that they can later resume their careers where they left off. Founder Ricarda Engelmeier and her three-person team employ seven trainers and offer companies a unique, multi-faceted program. The aim of MyCollective is to support talented individuals while also promoting diversity and skills in the long-term.
The Munich-based online platform PLANETICS is Germany’s first marketplace for sustainable and fair sports equipment. Planetics is particularly keen on supporting small manufacturers and providing clear and transparent criteria for all products as well as an individual “footprint” with respect to water consumption, CO2 emissions, microplastics, working conditions, and chemical additives. This will help eco-conscious consumers with their purchasing decisions.
Munich’s Treesense company has developed sensors which are attached to trees to monitor their health and water requirements. The aim is to help towns and cities care for trees in parks and on streets more efficiently, especially due to the extra challenges posed by climate change and extreme weather events. The team, comprising four founders and eight students from the TU Munich, wants to use technology to help plants and trees by making it easier to measure their needs and uses.
The Munich-based cooperative ver.de e.G. was founded by economist and biologist Dr. Marie-Luise Meinhold, who previously spent several years working for a major insurance company. Ver.de is an insurance company which invests member contributions in accordance with sustainable and social criteria. The contributions will also help to advance the transition to a more sustainable society. In addition to the investments, Ver.de wants to promote sustainability through its services.