Latest innovations in start-up world

Over 81 entrepreneurs took part in the Tiecon Fest held at recently on  November 18 and 19.

Published: 24th November 2016 05:54 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th November 2016 05:54 AM   |  A+A-

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Cushinbinshad and Sanatta Balakrishnan

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Over 81 entrepreneurs took part in the Tiecon Fest held at recently on  November 18 and 19. Among all the innovative products and services showcased, we list a few:

Virtual Tele-presence
Imagine you are the CEO of a large organisation. Your tight schedule does not permit you to interact often with your employees. Kochi start-up Sastra Robotics has a solution for you — Anette, its
tele-presence robot. The robot can be connected via the Internet and be ‘virtually’ present among your employees. Currently, Anette is in the development stage. The company’s robot SR-Scara-Pro, a robot customised for the automated testing of touchscreens, control panels, etc. was on display at the start-up pavilion in the Tiecon conference.

Started in 2012 at Startup Village by Aronin Ponnappan, Akhil A and Achu Wilson, Sastra Robotics has collaborated with Switzerland-based Cyberbotics, Korea-based Dongbu Robot and US-based Corobot. In 2014, TIE Bangalore had selected Sastra as one of the top 10 most-promising early-stage start-ups.
“Bosch is one of our major customers. We have sold 15 SR-Scara-Pro robots so far. Basically, it is an end effector for different device testing. Many companies have expressed their interest in the product,” said Melvin George, Produce Manager, Sastra Robotics. The 12-employee start-up is located near CUSAT.

Promoting Artworks to global audience
An online Art gallery founded by siblings Cushbinshad and Sanatta Balakrishnan — www.cushbu.com — is another start-up that caught the eyes of many participants at the fest. The startup’s aim is to promote artists and showcase their work to a global audience. Cushbu will be live by January 2017, with an initial target of having 10,000 artists on board. The start-up is incubated at GEO Infopark at Kakkanad.
The duo drew inspiration from their father C R Balakrishnan, who was a drawing teacher.

“Artists can sign-up on our website and  upload their work for free. After verification, it will be displayed on the site. Even though there are 40 such websites globally, most of them charge a registration fee from the artist. Also, for example, if an artwork is sold for $1,350, the artist will receive only $700.
But if they sell it through us, the artist will get $1,000”, said Cushbinshad, who gave up an IT job to pursue the dream.

The start-up aims to tap the low shipping cost in India to ship artworks across the world. Not surprisingly, it is planning to utilise the services of India Post due to its comparatively low domestic and international shipping rates.

Bus announcements made easy
V-Robotics — a start-up at Maker Village in Kochi, showcased its product ‘Bus Parrot’, an android application for bus passenger information with live bus tracking and automated announcement.
Bus Parrot would be installed in a bus plying from Thrissur-Govindapuram soon. “If there are sponsors, Bus Parrot can be installed in buses. The sponsors’ advertisements will be scrolled on the screen, apart from other entertainment-related stuff. Another product is a Bus Parrot kiosk. It will have features such as bus information, Internet TV, Tele-presence for enquiry and charge station for electronic devices. The Bus Parrot can be connected with kiosk using GPS”, said Satheesh C, founder, V-Robotics.
The company developed another product, a Robotic School Bell. Apart from ringing, the school bell also has a voice announcement system. With this initiative, over 100 schools in the state have automated school bells.

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