Brazilian start-up claims global tech innovator prize at Web Summit

3 Nov 2021

Image: © 9dreamstudio/Stock.adobe.com

Krilltech scooped the top prize at KPMG’s pitch contest, which saw 17 start-ups – including Ireland’s CattleEye – go head to head in Lisbon.

Brazilian agritech start-up Krilltech has been crowned the winner of KPMG’s Global Tech Innovator pitch contest at Web Summit in Lisbon.

Krilltech, which was one of 17 start-ups from all over the world competing, develops biodegradable organic nanoparticles to increase crop productivity and quality.

It is a partnership between Brazilian agricultural research corporation Embrapa and University of Brasília. It worked with researchers to create arbolin, a naturally derived product that can help farmers obtain more productive and sustainable crops at harvest.

Krilltech beat 10 Brazilian start-ups in the national phase of the competition to qualify for the final this week.

It then competed against start-ups from Ireland, Mexico, India, Portugal, Germany, Canada, the US, Israel, the Middle East, Africa, Taiwan, India and Spain.

The competition’s runner-up Fido Tech hails from the UK. The data-as-a-service company provides end-to-end AI-powered leak detection. It can identify water leaks and the size of leaks, and accurately locate them to under a metre.

Belfast-based CattleEye was also in attendance, after winning the Ireland and Northern Ireland qualifier earlier this year. Its CEO Terry Canning presented his AI video analytics platform for dairy farmers to the judges. While he didn’t win on this occasion, he did manage to beat stiff competition to get a chance to represent the island of Ireland on the global stage.

CattleEye was chosen over seven others by a judging panel of leading Irish entrepreneurs and tech figures. Canning said at the time that he was “very proud to represent the country”.

Each of the 17 start-ups competing in the global final had the opportunity to pitch their products, as well as gain free entry into Web Summit, flights to Lisbon and hotel accommodation.

The final was hosted by KPMG Ireland partner and tech sector lead Anna Scally and competition sponsor Kevin Smith, who is head of KPMG private enterprise in the UK and EMA.

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Blathnaid O’Dea is Careers reporter at Silicon Republic

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