FlowlityThe French start-up Flowlity won the European Supply Chain Start-up Pitch during the hybrid inNOWvate Supply Chain Event in the Dutch city of Utrecht on 13 October 2020. This prestigious competition is organized by Supply Chain Media. Flowlity received a clear majority of the 389 votes that were submitted by the audience watching online.

In this pan-European contest, the French company was up against three other start-ups: Prewave from Austria, SmarterChains from Switzerland and Kodiak Rating from Sweden. All four start-ups offer a digital solution for supply chain visibility. Kodiak Rating has developed a cloud solution for supplier management. SmarterChains provides a digital platform that enables manufacturing companies to create and implement a smart roadmap for industrial automation. Prewave issues warnings about supply chain disruptions based on the analysis of social media data. Winner Flowlity’s platform incorporating artificial intelligence helps manufacturers to connect their suppliers and customers to enable the real-time calculation of optimal inventory levels and planning of replenishment activities.

According to a recent Supply Chain Media survey of 106 European manufacturing companies, 40% of them plan to invest in software solutions for end-to-end supply chain visibility over the next 12 months. That was the reason why Martijn Lofvers, CEO & Chief Trendwatcher at Supply Chain Media and contest organizer, decided to select start-ups in that field this year.

Maturity Matrix

Supply Chain Media publishes an annual Maturity Matrix of European supply chain start-ups based on the company’s analysis of over 160 start-ups from all over Europe. They are visualized in an overview featuring ten categories of different solutions. “In the previous two editions of the contest during our inNOWvate Supply Chain Event, we allowed start-ups from any category to take part,” says Lofvers. “Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, we were forced to move our event from the spring to the autumn and create a more digital format. As a result, we decided to limit the scope of the award and to cancel the separate contest for more mature scale-ups this year.”

To select the four candidates, the jury – headed up by Lofvers – evaluated all start-ups based on four aspects: the market potential, the innovativeness, the applicability in practice and the clarity of the message.

Online pitches

In contrast to the last two years, the tighter restrictions due to COVID-19 meant that the start-up teams were unfortunately unable to travel to the Netherlands to hold their pitches. Instead, the four finalists each presented their solution in a three-minute online pitch from their own location – and mostly from home. In the two hours following the pitches, a total of 389 viewers cast their votes. Flowlity secured a convincing majority. “The viewers have decisively chosen a clear and smart solution that provides insight into inventory in the supply chain,” concludes Lofvers.

Jean-Baptiste Clouard, CEO and founder of Flowlity, was visibly surprised at being named the winner and expressed his thanks for all the attention. Flowlity’s prize is a €10,000 marketing campaign across Supply Chain Media’s various media channels.