2020 has been a strange year for all of us. We feel lucky to be doing alright during these challenging times.
In the beginning of the year, Rebartek moved into a new location. We now have our own office as well as a pilot factory space where we prefabricate rebar cages for our local customers. So far we have delivered 12 projects to 4 different local customers from our pilot plant.
The corona situation in Southern Norway is stable at the moment, and that allows for our full time employees to safely work on site at our factory.
Our focus for the rest of 2020 will be on running several more pilot projects locally as well as preparing some big projects in Norway and Europe for next year. Stay tuned!
To hear more about how we are doing, watch our CEO Max on the podcast Automated Constructionwith Jarret Gross.
We’re literally wrapping things up in Shenzhen, China! For the last three months, we’ve been taking our hardware to the next level in the Shenzhen HAX lab. Now the time has come to pack up the robots and head back home. Read on to learn how the experience has been for our employees, and what the HAX team in Shenzhen has to say about Rebartek’s time in their lab.
While the thought of traveling to the other side of the world with your awesome coworkers is great, we also knew that this would be a huge adjustment. Our investor, SOSV puts their startups through accelerator programs to speed up their development. Our Accelerator program is HAX, which is focused on developing hardware.
HAX is a hardware accelerator program in cooperation with our investor SOSV. HAX recruits teams with hardware prototypes and turns them into functional, sustainable companies.
The HAX program experience
Arriving in Shenzhen was a dizzying experience, not only due to the obvious jet lag. The HAX program provides its startups with a workspace, a team of engineers and resources in a tech lab bursting with innovation. The rest is up to you and your team. With all the tools, expertise and experience at our disposal, we had to make sure we did our part to get the most out of our limited time in Shenzhen.
While in their lab, HAX also provided us with connections and strategic support. We got to know the facilitators of the program, and they got to know us. Program Director at HAX, Ji Ke, had this to say about Rebartek’s time in the lab:
“This startup is very ambitious and capable of making decisive decisions. The hardware prototype planning is lean, and objective focused; entirely compatible with Shenzhen ecosystems.”
When asked what he thinks sets Rebartek apart from others as a contech startup, Ke had this to say:
“You are straight on laser-focused on a proven market, and this is due to your team’s experience in this field.”
New Rebartek prototype
Our time in Shenzhen at HAX has been vital to our technical development. We are happy to share that we have made progress at a speed that would not have been possible without an accelerator program such as HAX.
And to round off our talk with Mr. Ji Ke from HAX, we asked for a one-sentence piece of advice for Rebartek in the next 12 months, his answer was clear and concise:
“Tech team leadership is going to make or break your company.”
We could not agree more with Ke. And that’s why we are making technical development leadership a big priority in the coming months (more on that another time).
We are grateful and proud to be working with this program, and very excited to bring our new robot prototype home to Norway for testing and production.
This summer has been very eventful for Rebartek with many new developments. Since we have not managed to update our news page in a while, we owe you a quick update on some of the latest, big developments:
Investor on board: SOSV and HAX
In May we signed our pre-seed deal with SOSV. SOSV is a multi-stage VC that has funded over 700 startups to date, and runs accelerators for different verticals all over the world. We joined HAX. HAX is a hardware-specific accelerator. Their program operates across two locations, Shenzhen and San Francisco, giving founders the resources necessary to move with lightning speed. We are currently prototyping in Shenzhen facilities. If you want to learn more about Shenzhen, here is an inspiring documentary to start with. In fall we will move on to San Francisco to raise our Seed round.
Rebartek selected for RobotUnion Accelerator
On July 3rd, Rebartek got selected for the RobotUnion accelerator program. From a pool of 206 applications, Europe’s 20 best robotic startups were selected for the feasibility phase. And we are one of them!
The best startups presented their ideas and competed for up to €223,000 in equity-free funding, alongside acceleration and world-class mentoring services.
RobotUnion offers a total of 4M€ in equity-free funding in two open calls for startups and SMEs within the framework of the Horizon 2020 program funded by the European Commission.
Selected startups are advancing the digitalization of European industry in the areas of health, manufacturing, agriculture, civil engineering and open disruptive innovation.
HAX & EF Demoday in Hong Kong
Entrepreneur First and HAX joined forces this year. In July, they had their first joint demoday in Hong Kong. We presented our solution to over 150 investors and corporates at HAX there. We prepared intensively together with the other startups and with HAX’ help improved our pitch immensely. We connected with several promising investors and potential partners.
CEMEX Construction Startup Competition
Afterward, we went to CEMEX’ Construction Startup Competition. Over 500 startups from over 70 countries competed. We got selected as one of the ten winning startups and were invited to pitchday in Mexico. CEMEX went over and beyond and hosted an amazing event. We connected with inspiring startups, as well as potential customers and investors.
Thanks for checking in on us! We will be updating you again soon!
We’re delighted to share that Rebartek has been accepted into the Innoventus Sør incubator program.
Local start-up incubator
Innoventus Sør er is one of SIVAs national incubators in Norway. The incubation program’s goal is to develop future businesses through identifying, developing and commercializing good ideas and create new growth for established businesses.
their incubator program, Innoventus Sør will provide Rebartek with business development
and legal consulting, amongst other things.
happy to be working with local start-up supporters and we’re excited about the
opportunities this will bring us!
Rebartek will be on the Expert Committee in MEERC, representing two fields: digitization and prefabrication.
The main purpose of the MEERC project is to contribute to the Construction Engineering program at UiA being rooted in the latest research and “best industrial practice”. MEERC does this by researching projects that have been developed together with Nye Veier and the industry, to help ensure that NV fulfills their social mission statement, which is to “build good roads quickly and smartly”.
Rebartek CEO, Max Trommer sees the MEERC project as an excellent opportunity to network and looks forward to being a part of the important conversations in a rapidly developing construction industry.
Seven PhD candidates over three years
MEERC is an important research project established as one of several projects under Nye Veier’s deal with UiA. For the next three years, seven PhD candidates will be working on the project, and increasing the competence in both UiA, the construction business and at Nye veier.
Kjell Olav Johannessen (MEERC project member from UiA) says this about Rebartek’s participation in the project:
-The expert committee consists of people from different companies and organizations. By including Rebartek in the Expert committee, we are bringing on board innovation that rethinks how to solve rebar work in the future. Rebartek is developing provident and competitive processes for prefabrication of rebar for concrete elements.
Rebartek is looking forward to take part in the MEERC, and contributing our knowledge to this important project.
As you might have seen on our social media, this month Rebartek went to Austin Texas to check out the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival. Now that we’re back and have had time to digest the whole experience, we’d like to share some of the highlights of the trip with you.
Tech festival in Texas
Rebartek was invited to join a delegation from the Agder Counties on this trip. We jumped on the opportunity to experience SXSW which has grown to be a huge technology and culture festival. Certainly the biggest tech festival in Texas. Each year, hundreds of thousands of people turn up to see the myriad of technology talks, films and concerts. We were there for the “interactive” week, which mostly focuses on tech, innovation, politics and startups.
Traveling with startups and the Mayor
With us on this trip were several representatives from the public sector in Agder, Kristiansand mayor Harald Furre, for instance. We were also joined by other startups from our region in Norway such as:BiTMESH, Intoto, ShareboxandAppSens.
traveled to Austin, we applied to take part in a pitching competition that
takes place in Austin and is hosted by International Accelerator. Right before
we left Norway, we were told that we had made the cut. So the first couple of
days in Austin, we were busy with this event. Coaching from several different
business mentors was the theme of day one. On day two, it was pitching time.
Many of the other startups from our delegation also pitched on the same day.
Rebartek takes 5th place
ended up in 5th place in the International Accelerator competition,
and we’re very happy with those results. You can read more about Accelerator
Inspiration and networking
Needless to say, we were pumped to have gotten great results in the competition, but Austin had more to offer. The rest of the week at SXSW was spent on attending interesting talks and sessions on innovation and tech, as well as a couple of meetings. Additionally, we also had an opportunity to network with both the Norwegian startups and the public officials in our delegation from Agder, which is a valuable takeaway from this trip.
Back in Norway, we hit the ground running with several exciting meetings with potential investors, partners and customers.
More travels are coming up soon, and Rebartek will be visiting Stockholm, Brussels and München. And if you want to have a talk with us, please do not hesitate to reach out!
Business Angels Norway aims to grow the angel investment scene in Norway. At a local event in Kristiansand, Rebartek was featured as one of two promising local start-ups.
Last week, our CEO Max, got the opportunity to present our start-up at a seminar held by Nordic Angel program, NAP (a program by Business Angels Norway).
Part of EU’s 80 Billion Euro initiative “Horizon 2020”, The Nordic Angel Program (NAP) is a training program about cross-border startup investment.
At the seminar, participants got insight into the processes that NAP applies to choose the best start-ups. They also presented their educational course for new angel investors. Rebartek was asked to join the seminar as a featured promising start-up.
What our IT intern Emil has to say about his time so far in Rebartek
Text and photos by: Jona Runarsdottir.
Emil Morønning Ruud started as an IT- intern at Rebartek in December of last year. He has now been working with us for a few weeks, so I sat down with him to get his thoughts on the experience so far.
In order to get the word out to students, Rebartek runs ads on kompetansetorget, a platform that connects students at the University of agder and employers. But Emil found us the old fashioned way: -the jungle telegraph.
When asked about his descision to work for us, he is quick to answer:
-What tempted me the most about working here, is all the tech that is integrated in the work you are doing; Machine vision, robotics and AI, amongst other things.
In our team, Emil contributes with his skills in programming.
-At the moment we are mainly using Python as our programming language, but we might need to expand on this front at some point.
Doing something that’s never been done
Emil says he finds the other members on the
team very eager to help each other, and he explains why that is crucial in a
startup like this one:
-We are doing something that hasn’t really been
done before. So, understandably no one really has the exact expertize for the interdisciplinary
development we’re doing. So we need to try things out all the time. But this
also means that you’ve got a job where you are constantly gaining skills.
You don’t need to know it all to be an intern
Emil says he encourages students to apply for
an internship at Rebartek, and points out a common apprehension students might
-People are often scared that they don’t have all
the skills that are important in an intern position. But that really doesn’t apply
here. We just need people that have some base-experience or skills in one or
more of our fields, and then your job as an intern is to learn as you go.
Rebartek welcomes Emil, and we are looking forward to seeing him develop along with our team.
Interested in an internship? Go to the “let’s talk” button on this page, and get in contact with us! You can also find us on Linkedin and twitter.
Rebartek is proud to announce that we have been selected to join the startup program «Gründerhub» in Kristiansand. The program is based in CoWorks in Kristiansand, and includes mentoring from business leaders, entrepreneurs and MIT-trained coaches.
There are eight startups in our group and one of these companies will receive a 50 000 NOK prize. The winner will be competing for another 250 000 NOK prize for best startup amongst all the other Gründerhub- startups in Norway.
We are looking forward to learing, networking and developing together
with this group of creative people and want to send a big thanks to CoWorx
Kristiansand and SR bank for fascilitating this program.