The winner is Streetline

IBM SmartCamp Final
Zia Yusuf, CEO, Streetline at IBM SmartCamp in on of many mentoring sessions (photos)

It’s just been announced in the last hour that the winners of the second IBM SmartCamp is Streetline.

As the Irish PM finished his speech and walked out of the convention centre in Dublin, followed by a huge media scrum (I think he has some pressing matters with the IMF) nine companies were holding their breath to see if they had won the title of “Global Entrepreneur of the Year” aka the Worlds Smartest Start-up.

I have to say I watched all the presentations a few times, at the event on Livestream and on YouTube. The more you watched the more you realised that there was less than a fag paper between any of them.

Treemetrics, the local hope, got a special recognition mention for the work they are doing to preserve forests and improve the supply chain in wood. Sproxil also got a special mention on a system that was incredible well thought through to prevent counterfeit drugs getting on to the market.

Take a look for yourself at the finalists, they all deserve and will get special attention for the work they are doing.

Throughout the three days the level of advice in the open sessions we saw on Livestream was incredibly and refreshingly honest and blunt. What not to do, where to go and how to go about it. It was all there, the mistakes, the horrors and the success. One of the session I really liked was that with Chris Horn, Founder Iona & Innovation Taskforce, Masterclass: Company Building.

So what won Streetline the award? Well, it seems that the judges liked the impact that their solution would have across the board as well as the environmental impact by reducing pollution. Every business will benefit as customers and employees find parking easier and simpler. As Zia pointed out, this has a direct medical impact too, reducing stress. That may sound silly but how often have you been stuck looking for a space when you had to be somewhere and gone a bit crazy? Late for that interview? Sales engagement? Reduce the stress, you reduce the number of heart attacks, reduce some stress on the health service, people are more pleasant and our general well being is improved.

Zia said himself, “I don’t want to sell sensors, I want to solve a problem,” and what a problem it is. Soon driving around for a space will be as obsolete as phone boxes.

Good luck to Streetline and all the finalists and participants that took part around the world. Looking forward to next years competition and seeing what gems can be unearthed to make the planet a bit smarter.

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