NextCam, startup created throughout the program Academic Working Capital 2018 by electrical engineering students of the UFPR, Adriano Peniche dos Santos and Guilherme Cordeiro Vogt, and by the engineer Luis Guilherme Dias de Souza, was the winner of the Prêmio ENGIE Brasil de Inovação 2019 (ENGIE Brasil Innovation Award 2019). The award offered by ENGIE, a Brazilian company in the energy industry, was delivered on June 6th during the 5th edition of ENGIE Brasil Innovation Day 2019, at the Museu do Amanhã (the Museum of Tomorrow), located in the city of Rio de Janeiro.
The focus of this year award has been to honor projects that presented innovative solutions in the scope of the theme “Health and Occupational Safety”. Open to the public, the event will also featured a lecture with authorities of the area, about how innovation and technology should contribute to the theme. “The award was not only for students and we were competing with relatively great market players. Knowing that we could win even facing these other companies, makes us very happy”, says Guilherme Vogt.
“Taking part on the final event was awesome and increased even more our anxiety for the trip to Paris. We could show our solution, our story and make important partnerships”, comment the maker. The team will also present their product from June 17<sup>th</sup> to 21<sup>st</sup> at the ENGIE Innovation Week in Paris, and that will help the company to know more about its consumer market outside the Brazilian territory. The award also includes a partnership with Engie company, that will work with the startup throughout the year.
Seeking to create a solution that could optimize the construction industry, reducing costs and increasing safety in building sites, NextCam – after a pivoting process during the Instituto TIM program of the of entrepreneurship education, Academic Working Capital (AWC), created a smart camera that uses AI (Artificial Intelligence) and computer vision to identify risks and, thus, facilitate preventive actions to be taken. The software generates weekly reports, as well as daily alerts through WhatsApp.
After the closure of the AWC 2018 program, the startup grew legs and walked away. Now, having a space in a coworking office and with fully time working partners, the team is running their fourth pilot project and conducting tests since this January. “After the AWC we found out that some things we thought that would be trivial did not work,” says Guilherme, that added: “If we thought the program was difficult, having a startup without the mentors from AWC would have been much worse. We had to maintain a very good cooperation structure among the three of us, in order not to lose focus.” Once some customers are already interested, the team’s focus this year is to conclude the MVP (Minimum Viable Product), and by the end of the year win another contract, besides that one signed with ENGIE.