Startup helps children tell their own stories / Prize-winner to receive €10,000 / Third instalment of CONTENTshift set to launch in 2018 / Companies invited to get involved as sponsors and jury members
The Danish startup WriteReader was named “Content Startup of the Year” today at the Frankfurt Book Fair. The technology was created by a team of founders led by Babar Baig and helps children to write, share and publish their own books. WriteReader thus fosters childhood literacy in a playful way and motivates children to have fun learning to read and write. The app has been on the Danish market since 2012 and the company is already partnered with the Egmont publishing house, among others.
The expert jury involved in CONTENTshift – an industry accelerator launched by the Börsenvereinsgruppe – chose the Danish startup from out of five candidates in the final round of the programme. A total of 36 startups from all over the globe applied to participate in the competition. WriteReader will now take home this year’s €10,000 incentive bonus.
Jury spokesperson Dr. Bettina Hansen: “WriteReader revolutionises the way children are taught to read and write. The technology they use awakens children’s creativity and joy for learning. When such young readers are encouraged to discover their own creativity and become enthusiastic about reading and books, the entire industry benefits in a long-term sustainable manner, especially with regard to customer life cycles. The compelling approach used by WriteReader has a clearly recognisable advantage for the retail book trade as well as for publishers. It also serves to genuinely enrich the overall market”.
Among the other startups on the shortlist next to WriteReader were CHAI (France: mobile app allowing readers to continue ‘reading’ books by listening to them as audio files), Kontextlab (Germany: interactive knowledge maps enabling fun and simple access to complex themes), L-Pub (Germany: enhanced eBooks with additional context-specific information and learning tools) and Therapio (Germany: app for use by therapists to provide digital support to patients by means of personalised training videos and schedules).
CONTENTshift will enter its third year in 2018. Companies are already invited to get involved in the project as investors. A €10,000 investment will entitle you to a spot on the jury as well as direct and exclusive access to all participating startups.
The members of the jury for CONTENTshift 2017 were Dr. Thomas Feinen (Hoffmann und Campe), Dr. Bettina Hansen (Georg Thieme Verlag), Jens Marquardt (Schweitzer Fachinformationen), Dr. Wolfgang Pichler (MANZ’sche Verlags- und Universitätsbuchhandlung), Dominik Strähle (Thalia), Detlef Büttner (Vorstand Börsenverein), Ronald Schild (Börsenvereinsgruppe), Carmen Udina (IG Digital) and Dr. Bernd Fakesch (Nintendo Germany).
Among the experts available to the startups as mentors in the CONTENTshift programme were Volker Oppmann, who worked with CHAI, Dr. Bernd Fakesch, who worked with Kontextlab, Dr. Wolfgang Pichler, who assisted L-Pub, and Dr. Bettina Hansen, who assisted Therap.io. Carmen Udina was mentor to WriteReader.
Prof. Dr. Okke Schlüter and Dr. Harald Henzler contributed to CONTENTshift in their function as startup coaches.