VUB Spin-off Portfolio

ICT spin-offs - VUB

Lumency

Prof. Abdellah Touhafi of the Industrial Engineering Sciences research group (INDI) over the years developed extensive expertise in the area of acoustic sensor array. The research within INDI lead to the development of a "Simulator and VHDL based core for the creation of acoustic sensor array". This know-how will be used to develop services and products for smart sensor and smart actuator applications. Two main application domains related to environmental sensing and smart buildings are envisioned. This way Lumency wants to contribute to a healthy living environment and to the so-called ‘Nearly Zero Emission Buildings’, a European regulation concerning energy-efficient technologies with the purpose to considerably decrease emissions by 2018.

Lumency BVBA was founded in November 2016. As VUB spin-off the company received an exclusive license for this know how and is developing products and services related to ‘smart sensing’ with emphasis on indoor and outdoor monitoring of sound, light and air quality parameters. This sensing technology is used in smart lighting solutions for indoor parkings, smart street lighting and in smart lighting for smart buildings. For this purpose Lumency combines its sensor technology with its own developed smart-drivers for LED technology.

Lumency is offering advice and support to customers on the most suitable smart lighting solutions and implementations. Secondly, they will develop ‘Light as a Service’ and ‘Sensing as a Service’ in order to manage the complete lighting issues of a customer and to extract important information about the status of a building and its use. For this purpose Lumency has created an open interface for its hardware components which is compatible with several open source sensing platforms and smart city platforms.

Contact:

Lumency BVBV
Abdellah Touhafi, Managing Director
Dieudonné Lefevrestraat 17
1020 Laken

Abdellah.Touhafi@vub.be

www.lumency.be

Zebra Academy

Zebra Academy: Speed & Competence through next generation telemedicine
Zebra Academy streamlines urgent patient care by integrating pre-hospital and in-hospital procedures. By bringing the medical expert virtually in the ambulance, we believe it is possible to win those minutes that will make the difference in outcome for patients while the ambulance staff cares for them. Critical data (e.g. vital parameters, symptoms, …) can already be gathered & shared with the hospital staff (e.g. radiologist, neurologist, nurse, …) through the Zebra Web Platform in order to be ready for the arrival of the patient. Strokes represent a life-threatening condition which has a huge socio-economic impact. To maximise the chances of good outcome for patients it is recognized by the stroke community that speed & competence are crucial in order to give the right treatment to the patient within the right timeframe. Research concludes that efficient patient triage and effective pre-hospital procedures lead to a more positive outcome for patients.

The PreSSUB Technology ("Prehospital TeleStroke Study at the Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel") has been developed by the “Center for Neurosciences” of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and UZ Brussel, also in collaboration with the VUB-department of Electronics and Informatics (ETRO) to improve outcome for stroke patients by redesigning acute stroke care using a wireless telemedicine platform.

In 2016 Zebra Academy CVBA received an exclusive worldwide license from VUB/UZB, who remain owner, for the patented PreSSUB Technology for economic and societal valorization purposes.

Contact:

Zebra Academy CVBA
Bastien Ritzen, CEO & Co-Founder
Louizalaan 515 Box 4
1050 Brussel
info@zebra-telemedicine.com
+32 473 79 94 85

www.zebra-telemedicine.com

InSilico Genomics S.A

InSilico Genomics S.A. was founded in July 2012 by David Weiss and Alain Coletta. This spin-off initiative grew in the framework of the Impulse Program of Innoviris and the SOIB program in which the VUB research group COMO (Prof. Ann Nowe) and the IRIDIA research group of ULB (Prof. Hughes Bersini) were involved. 

Genomics datasets are increasingly useful for gaining biomedical insights, with adoption in the clinic underway. However, multiple hurdles related to data management stand in the way of their efficient large-scale utilization. 

The solution proposed is a web-based data storage hub. Having clear focus, flexibility and adaptability, InSilico DB seamlessly connects genomics dataset repositories to state-of-the-art and free GUI and command-line data analysis tools. The InSilico DB web platform is a powerful collaborative environment, with advanced capabilities for biocuration, dataset sharing, and dataset subsetting and combination.

Softkinetic

Optrima (°2009),spin-off of the VUB laboratory for Micro- & Photonelectronics and a leading provider of 3D Hardware for Gesture Interfaces that transform the way people interact with digital devices, merged in 2011 with SoftKinetic. Both businesses merged into Softkinetic and moved to state-of-the-art facilities in Brussels. This strategic joint venture aims to offer the most complete 3D depth-sensing imaging and gesture recognition solutions on the market. 

In 2015  SoftKinetic was sold to Sony. With this purchase Sony made the next step in the market for 3D Sensors. Therefore, the group was particularly interested in the so-called Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensor technology. This is a very accurate way to measure how long light travels the from an image sensor to the object and back. It measures the distance to an object and locates it in space. That way, you could control a game device with body movements, or a robot can orient itself in a complex environment.

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Universum Digitalis

Universum Digitalis (°2008) designs customized solutions for the management of multimedia databases and provides generic data-exchange interfaces for distributing data to various client applications. 

They target cultural, touristic industries and others

Collibra

Collibra (°2008) delivers tangible solutions for capturing and sharing business semantics in order to empower efficient and sustainable integration, governance and delivery of diverse enterprise information. Collibra envisions semantics as key enabling technology for governing heterogeneous information across the extended enterprise.

EqcoLogic

EqcoLogic (°2005) is a technology leader in high speed data transmission over copper cables. Using patented technology, they make Equalizers that permit longer cables or higher data rates and Transceivers that transmit bidirectional data and power over conventional coaxial cables. In 2013 EqcoLogic was sold to Microchip Technology Inc.

eXia

eXia Belgium nv (° October 2013) is an R&D driven provider of capacitive sensor technology, with the ambition to render European road transport safer and less damage prone, by avoiding blind spot incidents through the use of active blind spot sensor technology. The technology is based on research from the VUB Department of Electronics and Informatics (ETRO), in cooperation with iMinds vzw and sponsored by Ethias nv.

The Brussels-based fables supplier of sensor solutions currently develops a range of electrostatic safety sensors to prevent blind spot accidents between commercial vehicles and vulnerable road users. 

Blind spot accidents are mostly dramatic as they invariably result in severe injuries or fatality, and frequently involve vulnerable young children. Commercial vehicles make up only 3% of all vehicles, but are involved in 14% of fatal collisions (400 deaths per year in Europe). The legal obligation to implement blind spot mirrors since 2003, has not led to a significant decrease in the number of accidents. Both existing active (radar or ultrasound) and passive electronic systems (cameras) also produced disappointing results in recent studies.

With eXia’s novel approach to capacitive sensing technology, they aspire to be a major contributor to a safer truck of the future

Zensor

Zensor is a VUB spin-off established in the 2nd half of 2013 from within the university SURF research group. Today the company offers ‘Engineers in a box’ for various industrial applications such as offshore wind turbines, roadside service stations, buried pipelines, (petro)chemical plants...

Zensor’s solutions send out rich alarms when dangerous situations arise, but also automatically generate daily or monthly reports containing an overview of those components or devices requiring preventive maintenance or exhibiting a sub par performance.

For the measurements themselves Zensor relies on specific VUB-knowhow to measure corrosion activity together with an intelligent combination of additional sensor types to be able to determine, from remote, what exactly is going on at the structure.

Zensor presents itself as the ultimate industrial Risk reducer, beneficial both for insuring critical infrastructure as well as when looking for risk-averse sources of project financing.

Luceda Photonics

Luceda Photonics, a spin-off company of the B-PHOT team at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), of IMEC, and of the Photonics Research Group at the Ghent University, was created in June 2014. Luceda Photonics wants photonic IC engineers to enjoy the same first-time-right design experience as electronic IC designers. Its tools and services are rooted in over 50 years of experience in photonic integrated circuit design. The LUCEDA team consists of Erwin De Baetselier (CEO and VUB alumnus), Pierre Wahl (VUB B-PHOT Post-Doc), Wim Bogaerts (Prof. at UGent PRG/IMEC), Martin Fiers (Dr. at INTEC UGent), Pieter Dumon (Dr. at UGent PRG/IMEC), and Joris Geessels (Software Engineer at UGent). The team’s expertise in the development of process design kits and the design and validation of photonic integrated circuits is already used by several research institutes and industrial R&D teams worldwide.

Aquantis (M2Wave)

Aquantis is a young and ambitious Swiss company with Belgian roots (VUB spinoff M2Wave) specialized in innovative sensor solutions based on patented technologies.

M2Wave/ (2014) is a spin-off of the VUB research group Electronics and Informatics (ETRO) and uses fundamentally new insights into dielectric sensing at millimeter wave frequencies to offer novel cutting-edge sensor modalities to monitor real-time and inline industrial processes over a multitude of sectors to boost them into the era of industry 4.0.


BiosenSource

The bioinformatics services of BiosenSource - a VUB spin-off founded by doctor in Bioengineering Sciences Liesbet Van Oeffelen - are focused on the wide region of Flanders to provide optimal interaction with customers/experimental scientists. With its services, BiosenSource aims to optimize measurement protocols, data processing and analyses in terms of speed, quality and user-friendliness. 

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Life Sciences spin-offs - VUB

CellSine

CellSine: high content electrochemical screening
CellSine offers devices and data analysis software for biochemical and drug development studies. By using advanced electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) technology it delivers a fast and easy way to study a wide variety of biochemical and microbiological phenomena. CellSine’s EIS technology makes it possible to continuously monitor events, ranging from cellular behavior to biomolecular interactions. This technology is combined with specialized data analysis software that allows users to extract a maximum amount of information for a minimum amount of effort.

CellSine technology enables:

Label free measuring
The label free nature of CellSine’s impedance technology facilitates assay development and enables non-invasive & continuous monitoring of biological systems.

Wide field of applications

The advanced EIS measurements offered by CellSine’s devices can be used to study a variety of biological systems, such as adherent or suspended cell cultures, biofilms and biomolecules like proteins.

Easy data analysis
CellSine enables easy data analysis by offering an easy to use toolbox for own assay development, as well as fully automated analysis algorithms for recurring applications such as toxicology testing.

The key technologies of CellSine were developed within the VUB research group ‘Electrochemical and Surface Engineering (SURF)’ and KULeuven ‘Animal Physiology and Neurobiology Section’. In 2017 this know-how patented by VUB and KULeuven was licensed to Cellsine, a company founded in 2015.

Contact:

Sven Verguts, Co-founder
ICAB - Business & Technology Incubator
Witte Patersstraat 4 - 1040 Brussels - Belgium

www.cellsine.com
info@cellsine.com
+32 495 13 54 30

Zebra Academy

Zebra Academy: Speed & Competence through next generation telemedicine
Zebra Academy streamlines urgent patient care by integrating pre-hospital and in-hospital procedures. By bringing the medical expert virtually in the ambulance, we believe it is possible to win those minutes that will make the difference in outcome for patients while the ambulance staff cares for them. Critical data (e.g. vital parameters, symptoms, …) can already be gathered & shared with the hospital staff (e.g. radiologist, neurologist, nurse, …) through the Zebra Web Platform in order to be ready for the arrival of the patient. Strokes represent a life-threatening condition which has a huge socio-economic impact. To maximise the chances of good outcome for patients it is recognized by the stroke community that speed & competence are crucial in order to give the right treatment to the patient within the right timeframe. Research concludes that efficient patient triage and effective pre-hospital procedures lead to a more positive outcome for patients.

The PreSSUB Technology ("Prehospital TeleStroke Study at the Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel") has been developed by the “Center for Neurosciences” of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and UZ Brussel, also in collaboration with the VUB-department of Electronics and Informatics (ETRO) to improve outcome for stroke patients by redesigning acute stroke care using a wireless telemedicine platform.

In 2016 Zebra Academy CVBA received an exclusive worldwide license from VUB/UZB, who remain owner, for the patented PreSSUB Technology for economic and societal valorization purposes.

Contact:

Zebra Academy CVBA
Bastien Ritzen, CEO & Co-Founder
Louizalaan 515 Box 4
1050 Brussel
info@zebra-telemedicine.com
+32 473 79 94 85

www.zebra-telemedicine.com

AgroSavfe

AgroSavfe (°2013) is a new start-up from VIB (Flanders Institute for Biotechnology) based on years on research in the VUB laboratory of Prof. Jan Steyaert focusing on applications of single domain antibodies in agriculture. AgroSavfe employs its proprietary Agrobody™ technology platform to develop superior crop protection products, based on active ingredients with proven efficacy, in combination with Agrobodies™ as formulation agents. 

Agrobodies™ are derived from camelid antibodies and can be generated against virtually any target, to which they bind with high affinity and specificity. Agrobodies™ are easy and cost-effective to manufacture and are intrinsically very stable. 

Agrobodies™ directed against crop produce, leaves, seeds, pests or particular structures thereof enable targeted delivery and retention of the active ingredient at or near its site of action. Targeted delivery and improved retention of Agrobody™-based crop protection products allow for reduced application dosage and for extended performance with reduced application frequencies.

Insilico Genomics

InSilico Genomics S.A. was founded in July 2012 by David Weiss and Alain Coletta. This spin-off initiative grew in the framework of the Impulse Program of Innoviris and the SOIB program in which the VUB research group COMO (Prof. Ann Nowe) and the IRIDIA research group of ULB (Prof. Hughes Bersini) were involved. 

Genomics datasets are increasingly useful for gaining biomedical insights, with adoption in the clinic underway. However, multiple hurdles related to data management stand in the way of their efficient large-scale utilization. 

The solution proposed is a web-based data storage hub. Having clear focus, flexibility and adaptability, InSilico DB seamlessly connects genomics dataset repositories to state-of-the-art and free GUI and command-line data analysis tools. The InSilico DB web platform is a powerful collaborative environment, with advanced capabilities for biocuration, dataset sharing, and dataset subsetting and combination.

PharmaFluidics

PharmaFluidics (°2012) is an Antwerp-based microfluidics company that offers integrated milli- to nano-solutions for mixing, reaction and separation, with a focus on pharmaceutical processes and specialty chemistry. It is the aim of PharmaFluidics to facilitate the adoption of microfluidics in biotechnological and pharmaceutical processes. 

PharmaFluidics offers tailored solutions for processes that benefit from its unique expertise in micro- and nano-structured devices for the control of laminar flows, in a technology-independent fashion.

Ablynx

Ablynx (°2001) is a bio-pharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery and development of Nanobodies®, a novel class of therapeutic proteins based on single-domain antibody fragments which can be used to treat a range of serious and life-threatening human diseases. 

Ablynx is developing a portfolio of Nanobody®-based therapeutic programmes in a number of major disease areas, including inflammation, thrombosis, oncology and Alzheimer’s disease

Intellicrops

The mission of Intellicrops (°1999) is to develop novel crops for food, feed and industrial applications that grow on marginal land (too saline, too dry, too polluted.) or who need peculiar growth factors. 

The core activities of the company consist in transferring the appropriate cultivation techniques for the novel crops (agricultural consultancy) and developing novel techniques with saline crops for non-food applications (e.g. feed additives, phytoremediation, biomass...).

Beta-Cell

Beta-Cell (°1998) develops novel cell therapy and other products related to Diabetes. The company is a spin-off from the Diabetes Research Center (VUB-DRC).  

DRC is a leader in the biology of insulin-producing beta cells and its use as platform for novel methods in the treatment of diabetes. It has particular expertise in cell isolation and quality control, stem/precursor cell characterization and differentiation, preparation of standardized beta cell grafts and organization and funding of multi-center clinical trials in diabetes patients. DRC is an internationally recognized center of excellence in the field of diabetes

eTheRNA

eTheRNA NV is a spin-off company of the VUB established under the leadership of Prof. Kris Thielemans, head of the VUB Laboratory for Molecular and Cellular Therapy (LMCT) that is focusing on the development of mRNA immunotherapies. VUB granted eTheRNA the worldwide exclusive license rights for the TriMix technology.

TriMix can be used to prevent and treat cancer, infectious diseases, immune diseases and allergies. The TriMix technology is suitable for both ex vivo and in vivo applications, which represents its most distinguishing characteristic. 
eTheRNA has secured the financial resources required to initiate the clinical validation of the in vivo off-the-shelf TriMix product, to continue the development of the ex vivo TriMix product and to optimize its existing mRNA manufacturing activities. eTheRNA has established a preferential research collaboration with the VUB, in particular with the LMCT team of Prof. Kris Thielemans and with the UZ-VUB team of Prof. Bart Neyns, as well as other departments within the UZ-VUB.

Aquantis (M2Wave)

Aquantis is a young and ambitious Swiss company with Belgian roots (VUB spinoff M2Wave) specialized in innovative sensor solutions based on patented technologies. M2Wave (2014) is a spin-off of the VUB research group Electronics and Informatics (ETRO) and uses fundamentally new insights into dielectric sensing at millimeter wave frequencies to offer novel cutting-edge sensor modalities to monitor real-time and inline industrial processes over a multitude of sectors to boost them into the era of industry 4.0.


Confo Therapeutics

Confo Therapeutics is a drug discovery company building internal drug discovery programs on GPCRs addressing unmet medical need and originates from the CONFO® technology developed by Prof. Jan Steyaert and his team (VIB/Structural Biology Brussels (SBB) - Vrije Universiteit Brussel). For the first time, this technology allows medically relevant GPCRs (G-protein coupled receptors) to be stabilized in their active functional state, which is essential for drug discovery.. Confo Therapeutics employs its proprietary CONFO® technology to lock inherent unstable functional conformations of GPCRs as a superior starting point for drug discovery. CONFO® body-stabilized active state conformations of these receptors disclose previously inaccessible structural features empowering the discovery of novel agonists for better therapeutic intervention.

BiosenSource

The bioinformatics services of BiosenSource - a VUB spin-off founded by doctor in Bioengineering Sciences Liesbet Van Oeffelen - are focused on the wide region of Flanders to provide optimal interaction with customers/experimental scientists. With its services, BiosenSource aims to optimize measurement protocols, data processing and analyses in terms of speed, quality and user-friendliness. 

CAMEL-IDS

Fast and specific therapeutic radiation of cancer cells. Sparing healthy tissues.

Camel-IDS is a spin-off of VUB’s Molecular Imaging (MIMA) research group and the UZ Brussel Nuclear Medicine Department, headed by Prof. Tony Lahoutte.
Camel-IDS leverages recombinant, small antigen-binding fragments derived from Camelidae heavy-chain-only antibodies (sdAbs), otherwise called VHHs. These Camelidae-derived probes are used to transport therapeutic radioisotopes to selected target receptors on the cancer cell surface and will selectively kill cancer cells by irradiation.
These radiolabeled sdAbs represent a new class of drugs with superior pharmacokinetic properties compared to any other antibody based drug currently on the market, setting the foundation for fast, specifi c and therapeutically effective delivery of cytotoxic radiation to cancer cells, while sparing healthy tissues.

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Other domains - spin-offs VUB

Blue Planet

Blue Planet Academy & Consulting (BPAC) is the result of more than 20 years of dedicated research in the field of sustainable and alternative energy in the VUB department of applied mechanics. 

On the one hand, the BPAC expert team aims at investigating and managing energy fluxes. On the other hand, BPAC incorporates this expertise in the application-oriented courses about rational energy use in general and the energy performance certificate (EPB/EPC) more specifically.

SpartaNova

SpartaNova (°2010) is a joint VUB/UGent spin-off whose mission is to provide professional, science-based guidance to sports practitioners of all levels, with the aim of improving their performance and reducing the risk of injuries

€SPACE

€SPACE (°2010) focusses on triple bottom-line challenges (economic, social and ecological) associated with the spatial design and strategic planning of large-scale infrastructure projects. Their ambition is to facilitate complex spatial and infrastructure projects by a balanced and integrated method of design, proces and project evaluation, stakeholder management and legal counseling.

Double Pass

Double Pass (°2004) is specialised in the management of quality and performance in sports. Special attention is given to the traditional sports club and, more specifically, to the training of the younger members of the clubs as a niche. 

Their approach is based on a fully integrated and only to sports dedicated quality check system, aimed at improving each sports organization structurally and durably. They not only measure and monitor all quality and performance indicators, but also inform, advise and coach all those involved.

Symbion

Symbion (°2002) holds a worldwide, exclusive license on the IPC technology (Inorganic Phosphate Cement), which is traded under the brand name vubonite. 

Vubonite is an ecological, inorganic, non-alkaline resin that is prepared by mixing a powder and a liquid. The processing time can be adjusted and varies from a few minutes to approximately one hour. The result is a ceramic material with a three-dimensional network structure that is strong, durable and fire-resistant.

Elsyca

Elsyca (°1997) is focused upon pushing the frontiers of electrochemical process performance. With a unique combination of a powerful software technology and domain-specific engineering skills, Elsyca is capable of designing, modelling, simulating and optimizing the complete range of electrochemical processes.

NUMECA International

NUMECA International (°1992) is a leading software developer and solution provider for fluid dynamics simulations. Our solutions allow engineers and designers to predict physical behavior of complex systems where fluids (liquid or gas) play a significant role.

FBGS

FBGS International is a Belgium based company specialised in the development and commercialisation of Fibre Bragg Gratings (FBG) for fiber optical sensing and telecommunication applications. 

With its roots going back to I.D. FOS Research and FOS&S, the company was founded in 2011 and became a fully owned subsidiary of FBGS Technologies in Germany, together active as FBGS. FOS&S (Fiber Optic Sensors & Sensing Systems) was a VUB spin-off (°2001) specialising in the development and commercialisation of fiber optical sensing systems, based on more than 12 years of experience acquired by I.D. FOS Research at the VUB.

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