VDS2023 is on the verge of unveiling the winners of its international startup competition. On the 26th and 27th October, at the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia, the ten winning startups will come together at this prestigious tech event. There, they will showcase their projects before an audience of more than 10,000 attendees from 80 countries, alongside 400 international investors with a collective investment portfolio exceeding €8 billion.

A panel of distinguished investors and business leaders from global corporations will preside over the selection of the best startups in both their seed and growth stages during the grand finale. This esteemed panel will consist of: Rosa Sánchez, Head of Startups Valencia and Murcia at Banco Santander; Juan Luis Hortelano, President at Startup Valencia; Marta Cruz, Managing Partner at NXTP Ventures; Stefano Guidotti, Partner at P101 and Yolanda Tomás, Board Member at BiGBAN.


Today, we delve deeper into these 10 finalist startups that have managed to distinguish themselves among the more than 600 applications received from 48 different countries.

Autoscriber. A Netherlands-based startup that operates within the Health and Wellbeing sector, leveraging Artificial Intelligence to support medical professionals. Established in 2021 by founders Jacqueline Kazmaier and Koen Bonenkamp, the company specialises in the development of AI-powered natural language processing and speech recognition technologies to enable structured data extraction from conversations between doctors and their patients. Koen Bonenkamp emphasises the critical issue they address: “In real-world clinical settings, physicians often lack the time to complete Electronic Health Records (EHRs) the way they are designed. Valuable insights to improve patient care frequently get lost due to data being captured in a suboptimal format or not at all.” 

Their core mission is to reintroduce a human-centric approach into the medical practice environment while eliminating the burden of time-consuming administrative tasks. 

Autoscriber offers a groundbreaking solution called “Flow”, which enables medical professionals to record these conversations via their mobile phone and provides real-time insights and guidance for completing the EHR. This innovative approach results in reduced wait times, increased data collection, and an overall improvement of the doctor-patient consultation process.

Beynex. A pioneering startup, founded in Turkey, that is committed to improving brain health through a mobile solution that offers personalised exercises and engaging games. Co-CEO Sarp Akgönül underscores the impressive growth of the app, which has evolved from its early stages to become a platform boasting over 800 paying users, all achieved organically: “Initially conceived to detect early cognitive decline through gamified assessments, Beynex has now transformed into a comprehensive cognitive care solution, providing personalised lifestyle recommendations to aid long-lasting brain health.”

Looking ahead to 2024, Sarp outlines the ambitious goals of Beynex, which include a tenfold expansion of their user base, a commitment to in-depth research and validation studies, and the establishment of a community of brain longevity ambassadors. Addressing the imminent challenges that tech startups must face, Beynex’s co-CEO emphasises the importance of finding the right distribution channels and monetisation strategies while maintaining a high-quality product. 

In their participation in the VDS Competition final, Beynex expects to gain valuable visibility and recognition, as well as investor interest, feedback, and validation. The company highlights the strength of the Valencian ecosystem in fostering innovation and entrepreneurship, citing “the region’s renowned universities and research institutions, the strategic location of the city and its proximity to major European markets, which turn it into a convenient base for startups looking to expand internationally, and the exceptional quality of life, which attracts both local and international talent”.

Bridgewise. An innovative Israeli startup empowering investors to make more informed decisions with the aid of generative technology and AI. Vered Statlander, the Product Marketing Manager, highlights the remarkable evolution of their analytical capabilities and the critical development of their human-language explanations since the startup’s inception. “By adding more and more layers of analysis and investing more in our language model, the Bridgewise engine now covers more than 90% of the essential information any investor needs before taking action”, she notes.

She also spoke about the company’s objectives for the coming year, stating that, “We are committed to further advancing our AI capabilities, elevating the quality of our user interface, and broadening the services we offer. We plan to take the next step towards personalised financial services, introducing conversational interfaces to allow investors to ask questions and receive immediate answers in their native language. We will also incorporate additional layers of analysis, such as ESG and Universe analysis, to provide a more comprehensive solution.”

For Vered, participating in the VDS final represents an incredible opportunity to showcase Bridgewise’s “dedication to bridging the knowledge gap in the investment world”. She also went on to mention that, “Being selected as a finalist among numerous startups from around the world reinforces our vision and motivates us to continue delivering world-class AI-based analytics to investors globally. We look forward to reaching a wider audience and exploring new collaborative initiatives and possibilities.”

Cafler. A Spanish startup operating a dynamic marketplace where professional drivers handle all car-related tasks on your behalf. Founded in Barcelona in 2021, Cafler has since demonstrated impressive growth, providing over 150,000 services across three different countries with a global team exceeding 100 employees. They have set their sights on achieving over €100 million in Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) in 2024 and expanding their services to additional cities.

Ricard Guillem, founder of Cafler, holds Valencia in high regard, appreciating the “strong sense of community that encompassess all agents in the ecosystem, from investors and entrepreneurs to tech talent”. He expresses his excitement at being selected as a finalist, stating, “We hope to reach a broader audience with our vision and, hopefully, inspire others to join us on this challenging yet thrilling journey,”.

Ender Turing. An Estonian startup dedicated to improving the efficiency of call centres by streamlining quality control, agent coaching, and increasing customer satisfaction. According to Olena Iosifova, the CEO of the startup, “Ender Turing’s journey started as a speech-to-text technology and has since transformed into the fastest and most valuable speech analytics platform. Today, it plays a vital role in helping sales and customer service teams achieve peak performance within a matter of days.”

Olena also acknowledges the current global startup landscape, citing the challenges of a cooling venture capital investment climate. However, she emphasises that apart from tougher funding conditions, startups face unique hurdles in Europe, particularly the challenge of scaling due to the diverse range of 30 different languages spoken. To successfully scale in the EU, a startup must address multilingual marketing, sales, and support.

In the context of the international competition final, Ender Turing is determined to emerge as a frontrunner. “We are here to win, so we will put 200% of ourselves into this pitch. We would like to announce the start of our fundraising efforts, attract potential investors, and meet with companies that could become future clients”.

Legitify. This Irish startup specialises in the remote notarisation of documents through an online notary service. Aida Lutaj, the co-founder and CEO of the firm, reflects on how the project has evolved since its inception, stating that, “We have expanded the team and improved our product. A few weeks ago, we launched our new website and our new solution, while also developing our API infrastructure and building an AI rules-based engine that will help us scale faster. Looking to the future, we aim to further diversify our product offering with new solutions beyond digital notarisation.”

Regarding their participation in the competition, Legitify holds a multitude of expectations. Aida highlights the desire to “gain substantial visibility, establish meaningful connections, solidify our brand’s position within the European tech landscape, and lay the foundation for sustained growth and success on the international stage”. About VDS, he stated that, “The event provides a great opportunity to establish valuable relationships with industry leaders, attract potential investors, and explore collaboration and market expansion avenues. Moreover, being selected as a finalist boosts team morale and strengthens our relationship with the European tech ecosystem. Valuable insights for product validation and areas of improvement can be gleaned from the questions and feedback received during the grand final. Beyond the competition, exposure to other innovative solutions promises a rich learning experience.”

Quantic Brains. This Spanish startup employs AI to create 3D characters for films and video games. As Julio Covacho, co-CEO of the startup, explains, “When we started working on the project, it was a very ambitious, technologically disruptive dream aimed at revolutionising the creation of audiovisual content worldwide. Over the past two years, we have proven that this vision is not only possible but also that we have achieved the technical level we aspired to reach. Looking ahead to 2024, our focus will shift towards the commercialisation and growth phase, for which brimming with high expectations.”. 

Discussing the global startup scene, Julio underscores the heightened activity within the startup community, noting that each year, “the quality of projects and the teams behind them show remarkable improvement and growth which, in turn, contributes to a more professional and qualified ecosystem”.

“While our ambition is to win the competition, we must acknowledge the outstanding quality of the other selected projects which make the task very challenging. Our excitement about being VDS2023 finalists stems from the unique opportunity to share our vision and project with a diverse audience, including investors and institutions. We look forward to receiving feedback at all levels, which will serve us to continue growing and improving”, he states about the VDS competition final.

Spendbase. A Ukrainian startup that specialises in assisting companies in streamlining their budgets by eliminating inactive subscriptions and securing exclusive discounts. By 2024, they have set their sights on the goal of expanding globally and developing a new cloud optimisation solution to further reduce their customers’ expenses.

Andrii Melnykov, an engineer at the company, emphasises that when scaling technological projects for business growth, it is crucial to adapt to the unique needs of local clients, both from a technical and commercial standpoint, especially when looking to enter new markets.

Valencia, in his view, stands out for its exceptional universities and research institutions, “which form a community that drives technological innovation”. Regarding the final of the VDS2023 competition, Spendbase hopes to “connect with a community of like-minded people and boost our growth”.

Welii. This startup, founded in France, provides finance and IT teams with a powerful solution to secure the best prices for all their SaaS tools. According to Vincent Coste, the co-founder and CEO, in recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of startups as well as the amount of funding they’ve received.

Participating in VDS2023, Vincent envisions an opportunity to increase Welii’s visibility and credibility, “while attracting both investors and customers”. He adds that, “We are eagerly anticipating several prospects, including networking opportunities, valuable feedback to improve our project, and the potential to establish business partnerships. Above all, we hope to share solutions to make sure all companies are using the right tool at the right price and assisting companies in reducing costs and resources”.

Zim Connections. A UK-based startup  that has established itself as eSIM marketplace designed to assist travellers worldwide. Irina Gheorghiu, CEO of the company, acknowledges that launching a startup in 2023 “presents numerous challenges”. She emphasises the importance of “continuously monitoring global market trends, consumer behaviours, and emerging technologies. We stay attuned to changes in the telecom and travel industries, as well as broader tech and business trends”. For Irina, “customer feedback holds immense value, and as the company expands its services globally, we meticulously evaluate new market opportunities while prioritising infrastructure scalability”.

Through their participation as a finalist in VDS2023, Zim Connections aims to connect with potential partners, investors, and influential figures in the tech and entrepreneurship domains. “We want to use this unique opportunity to broaden our network, forge strategic partnerships, and secure essential support for our ongoing growth and expansion. Additionally, we anticipate that participation in the grand finale will provide valuable exposure and validation for our startup, reinforcing our commitment to innovation, customer-centricity, and sustainability—core values at the heart of ZIM Connections”, Irina highlights.


These projects, perspectives, and ambitions will be unveiled in just a few weeks time at VDS2023. On the 27th of October at 5pm on the Summit Stage, the two winning startups in the seed and growth phases will be announced. These startups will receive recognition, an exhibition space at the 2024 edition of Valencia Digital Summit, and the chance to harness the networking and business promotion opportunities offered by an international tech event like VDS, with the backing of organisations such as Plug and Play and Aquaservice, partners of the VDS2023 Competition.


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