How ProTechting turned Portugal into Fosun’s Top European Startup Hub

ProTechting is based on an incremental model of collaboration between startups and corporates. A startup program designed specifically for Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde, already running for two editions with a third one coming up.

The start of something new!

The first and second edition of ProTechting attracted 180 startups. The vast majority of them international, originating from more than 30 different countries. The applications were narrowed down to the ‘Top 25’ startups, which were put to the first test: the Bootcamp week. During the Bootcamp, representatives from Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde advised the startups to help polish their proposal. Whilst advising, they were searching for the best possible business models for potential integration.

This type of mentoring is crucial to the startups, allowing them to better understand the true potential of collaborating with large companies. At the same time, the corporates can evaluate the potential impact of future collaboration and tap into innovative solutions quickly.

What is the role of Beta-i?

At Beta-i, we believe the magic of corporate accelerators happens when innovation takes place at the intersection of successful corporates and ambitious startups. But the process is far from simple.

One of our key responsibilities is to manage the differences in “languages”, processes and viewpoints between the corporate world and the startup world. Large corporations, such as Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde, manage already profitable, established businesses. The startups’ sole purpose is to disrupt the established market, by introducing innovative approaches quickly, with few processes and limited control. The polar opposite to the corporate.

To foster collaboration, both actors need to adjust their approach and communication. Beta-i attempts to bridge the two worlds to build an open platform for innovation.

What was the outcome of collaboration?

ProTechting was a great success. The first goal was to have 2 to 3 startups working together with Fosun to test their solutions. Currently, we have 9 startups working together with Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde in different areas.

Another metric of success was to achieve a change within the internal structures deeply enrooted in Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde. They wanted to adapt some of the spirit, attitude, and processes of the startups, to better respond to the challenges they face, stimulate a culture of innovation and integrate new solutions into their offering. This goal, we achieved and surpassed.

The positive media attention and public notoriety that ProTechting generated were also important. The ProTechting brand and media coverage generated, reinforced the values of innovation associated with Fosun.

The grand prize: Successful collaboration

At the end of the program, the top startups were chosen to go on a roadshow to China to meet global investors, in addition to winning a money prize. But more important than the prizes, they are developing meaningful collaborations with Fosun, Fidelidade and Luz Saúde.

Winners of 1st edition

Ectosense leverages mobile technology to measure and analyse the user’s sleep quality in their home environment to improve quality of sleep, particularly for those that suffer from sleep disorders.


Lifesymb is a high-tech startup with a software that uses multiple sensors to analyse a person’s posture and provides insights about ideal movements using machine learning.

Winners of 2nd edition

Amiko is redesigning respiratory care through the use of Quantified Medicine. The pilot consists of two qualitative studies, one with healthcare professionals from Luz Saude and one with patients living with a chronic respiratory condition.

Bdeo has developed a visual claim solution for the insurance industry. The pilot aims to test the platform for carrying out damage assessments remotely using the mobile camera.

Visor.ai offers a virtual customer support advisor by using artificial intelligence. The pilot aims to analyse historical data of queries made on Facebook, determine how many can be answered automatically and automate these responses through visor.ai’s chatbot solution.

What were the key takeaways for the corporates?

Fosun understands that it is only possible to thrive in the next 100 years through constant innovation. At the closure of the program, Júlia Gu, Global Partner and Vice-President of the Fosun group, expressed: “ProTechting was born due to our will to contribute to the development of a new generation of entrepreneurs. The Fosun Group itself is a great example of how a small business can go global. We were founded 24 years ago, by a group of students, and grew to a point where we are today the biggest Chinese private investment holding, present in the four corners of the world. We are very pleased with the success of the first edition, which raises the bar very high for this one.”

According to Jorge Magalhães Correia, President at Fidelidade,“this project represents a validation of the bet that Fidelidade has been making in the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Portugal. We believe this type of dynamics brings added value to society as a whole and, as the big company that we are, we fully embrace the role of invigorating this ecosystem, by promoting the creation of new ideas and solutions”.

 

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