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Seniors: These technical ideas help in everyday life

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Seniors: These technical ideas help in everyday life

People in Germany are getting older: in 2030 more than a fifth of the population will probably be older than 60 years. At the same time, there is still a lot of catching up to do in related sectors such as care.

A promising environment, in which more and more start-ups are now moving – although investors have shown comparatively little interest so far. These five young companies have dared and want to concretely improve the lives of older people with their products.

Almost all of them have one thing in common: their private experiences with relatives prompted them to set up their start-up. An overview from the tablet with simple control to the smart home emergency call.

For many seniors, the Internet is completely new territory. To make it as easy as possible for them to get started, the Enna start-up has developed a system that is controlled using individually programmable plastic cards.

Users only have to look for the right card, put it on the tablet dock and they are taken directly to the video call with the grandchildren, to the family photo album or to the weather report. The linked content can be controlled via an app.

The dock can be tested free of charge for one month and then costs 17.90 euros per month. A tablet and a mobile internet connection can also be rented if required.

Enna was founded in 2020 by Jakob Bergmeier, Tim Haug and Moritz Kutschera – because their own grandparents were too afraid of modern technology and they were looking for an alternative. At the end of 2022, they secured seven-figure seed financing, in which the investment company Zwei 7, the Telefónica Innovation Hub Wayra and the TQ Group participated, among others.

The Enna team

Those: Enna

Other start-ups have also made it their task to introduce older people to the Internet. Media4Care, based in Berlin and Munich, and Senassist from Halle, for example, rely on tablets specially programmed for seniors, which are intended to support them in everyday life, in caring for them and in communicating with their families.

The start-up Silber Salon, founded by Joya Silva in Berlin, on the other hand, offers a learning platform and Online training courses for using smartphones and apps on.

Smart home emergency call from Veli

With an automatic emergency call, the start-up Veli from Kassel wants to make the homes of senior citizens safer without restricting their privacy. To do this, an AI-supported tool checks the resident’s already measured consumption data, such as electricity and water consumption, for irregularities.

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For example, it recognizes a forgotten hotplate or inactivity that deviates from the daily routine and automatically alerts relatives or nursing staff in an emergency.

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The founders of Veli – Jan-Peter Seevers, Maximilian Schnettler and Tim Weiß – actually studied business administration and computer science and had previously had no contact with the topic of care. Rather, the idea came from everyday life: When a relative fell and couldn’t reach the emergency button in the apartment, they went looking for a fully automatic solution, says co-founder Schnettler. The start-up is funded by the Exist start-up grant and the Hessian Ministry of Digital Affairs, among others.

The start-up Moio Care from North Rhine-Westphalia, on the other hand, relies on a sensor module attached directly to the body. The module uses movement data to detect falls or mobility. The start-up Lindera from Berlin wants to fall using an AI-supported 3D analysis even anticipate.

Communication App Myo

With the Myo app, the founders Felix Kuna and Jasper Böckel want to improve communication between carers and the relatives of people in need of care. They had the idea during an internship in a nursing home in Berlin: They noticed that seniors often forget to report positive experiences from their everyday lives. So they developed an app that carers and relatives can use to exchange messages and share documents, pictures and videos – for example from trips or events.

The home operators pay a license fee to the start-up founded in 2017. In the meantime, the app has been expanded to include additional functions – such as a module with which the menu can be digitized – and is used by more than 200 care facilities, according to the company.

Myo has also already closed two seven-figure financing rounds; The nursing home operators Agaplesion and Carpe Diem, the VCs Think Health, Bonventure, Mountain Partners and Round Hill Ventures, as well as the Axel Springer Plug and Play Accelerator, which, like WELT, belongs to Axel Springer SE, are involved.

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Nursing Service Kenbi

In hardly any other industry is the shortage of skilled workers as great as in nursing. The Berlin start-up Kenbi relies on better working conditions and less bureaucracy to make the job more attractive again. For example, there is a digital logbook, a separate personnel and further training platform, and an app for exchanging information with relatives. Kenbi’s care services are organized in a decentralized manner and are currently available at 24 locations in Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and Schleswig-Holstein.

Unlike its competitor Careship, the start-up’s income comes largely from settlements with health insurance companies. Investors believe in this approach of the founding team Katrin Alberding, Clemens Raemy and Bruno Pire: After a seed round of seven million euros, Kenbi collected one in December 2021 Series A funding of 23.5 million euros a. The investors include the American healthcare VC Endeavor Vision, Headline from the USA and Redalpine from Berlin.

Katrin Alberding, Bruno Pires and Clemens Raemy (from left to right) founded the care startup Kenbi

Those: Kenbi

The start-up Vertic Ventures, which was only founded in 2022, has developed a different approach to supporting outpatient caregivers: Among other things, a digital assistant is intended to simplify the organization and processing of home care. A number of well-known business angels, including the founders of McMakler and Mayd, have already raised money for this in a pre-seed round.

Proportional home sale of home equity

The Munich start-up Heimkapital offers a solution for seniors who need a cash injection – for an outpatient caregiver, for example, or to top up their pension. Through a fractional sale, home equity acquires 50 percent of their home or condo while the retirees retain a lifetime usufruct.

If the property owner dies, the heirs have the right of first refusal and can either buy back the house or apartment or have the start-up handle the entire sale.

For the cost-intensive business model, the founders Julia Schabert, Dimitrij Miller and Benedikt Wenninger received debt capital of 300 million euros at the beginning of 2022, plus a Series A round in autumn. Since it was founded in 2019, the company has already purchased properties in the hundreds of millions.

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The Hamburg start-up Wertactor follows a similar business model. However, there is also criticism of the concept: Compared to other financing options, the partial sale offers worse conditions, it is said.

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This text comes from a cooperation with the magazine “Gründerszene”. Click on the links, leave welt.de and end up in the articles at gruenderszene.de.

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In order to display embedded content, your revocable consent to the transmission and processing of personal data is required, since the providers of the embedded content as third-party providers require this consent [In diesem Zusammenhang können auch Nutzungsprofile (u.a. auf Basis von Cookie-IDs) gebildet und angereichert werden, auch außerhalb des EWR]. By setting the switch to “on”, you agree to this (which can be revoked at any time). This also includes your consent to the transfer of certain personal data to third countries, including the USA, in accordance with Art. 49 (1) (a) GDPR. You can find more information about this. You can withdraw your consent at any time via the switch and via privacy at the bottom of the page.

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