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Wincanton selects four finalists for 2021 W2 Labs programme

Wincanton has today chosen the four finalists to take part in its 2021 W2 Labs programme following a day of ‘Dragon’s Den-style’ pitches.

W2 Labs is a key component of Wincanton’s drive to deliver innovative solutions across the supply chain. The programme, open to early-stage businesses and Wincanton’s network of partners, sees entrants pitch ideas and products that can bring efficiencies across digitised supply chains.

This year’s companies submitted applications under three categories: ‘Dark Store’, ‘People’ and ‘Open Season’. These areas cover some of the biggest challenges and opportunities facing UK supply chains over the coming years.

The final four are:

  • BionicHIVE
  • CognitOps
  • Logivations
  • ThriveMap

The finalists will now take part in an intense ten-week process to refine and adapt their business propositions under the guidance of senior Wincanton mentors.

BionicHIVE, shortlisted in the Dark Store category, is an Israel-based start-up aiming to automate warehouse processes by using fleets of synchronised autonomous robots. Its product, SqUID, can operate in any warehouse environment, allowing floor to ceiling picking and retrofits onto any existing warehouse infrastructure.

Also shortlisted in the Dark Store category is CognitOps, from Texas, USA. CognitOps’ AI solution optimises warehouse operations by automating repetitive decision-making processes. Its technology can work alongside existing warehouse management systems and replace legacy processes.

Logivations, from Germany, is shortlisted in the Open Season category. By monitoring product flows and processes, it’s W2MO programme can create a ‘digital twin’ of operations. Together with an intelligent camera infrastructure, this allows AI-based control and management of automated guidance vehicles (AGVs). W2MO uses the data gathered to optimise real-life warehouse layouts and work schedules to deliver more efficient operations.

Thrivemap is shortlisted in the People category. Its product provides personalised pre-hire assessments for high-volume recruitment processes. It uses a combination of techniques, including virtual ‘day in the life’ experiences that simulate real-life working scenarios from the role in question, to ensure there’s an effective fit between candidate and employer.

From a total of 120 applications to the programme, 18 presented at the virtual Pitch Day.

This is the third year that Wincanton has run W2 Labs. The programme is organised in partnership with L Marks, the corporate innovation specialist and early-stage investor.