With most of the cultural and creative events having been downsized, delayed or cancelled in the past year, the industry has had precious few reasons to celebrate. To counter the gloomy state of affairs brought by Covid-19, the IF Innovation Award, hosted by Immaterial Future Association on the 4th of September, celebrates the most inspiring entrepreneurs offering bold solutions in the field of CultTech.
Everyone familiar with the world of startups knows that new technologies are key for up-and-coming startups. However, while most people have a pretty good idea of how technology is used in FinTech, PropTech or Health Tech, they may know less about CultTech.
CultTech, as the name suggests, refers to innovation in the culture and technology crossover space. While the connection between technology and culture may not be as straight forward as that for FinTech, the applications are just as diverse.
Given that the cultural and creative economy suffered a 30% loss this year, startups have been working hard to develop new business models that either give the cultural sector more financial independence or create distribution models that increase their accessibility.
“For some reason the cultural sector has always been a bit reluctant to embrace new technologies. In recent years and with more adapted technologies, we’ve seen this change. Events like the IF Innovation Awards are a great way to stimulate how CultTech can actually be helpful for the cultural sector. At ANote Music, we believe that we are just at the start of a big evolution of innovation. Just think about the possibilities for the cultural sector that emerged from technologies like Blockchain or NFTs. Progress in CultTech will help to democratise cultural activities, a wave we like to be on top off,” tells Marzio F. Schena, co-founder and CEO of ANote Music.
To recognise the biggest innovations in the culture and creative industry, Immaterial Future, the Vienna-based non-profit has decided to host its first IF Innovation Award ceremony on 4 September 2021. Founded in 2021, Immaterial Future aims to leverage culture’s massive untapped potential to make a positive impact and create a more accessible culture for all.
Of the 165 startups that participated in the competition, 6 finalists have been selected. The finalists, which include teams from Luxembourg, The Netherlands, US, UK, Brazil and Germany will pitch their ventures to an international jury panel and compete against each other to win €50,000 in funding.
“Being acknowledged with ANote Music as one of the finalists of the IF Innovation Awards comes as a great recognition for our company’s vision.”
Meet this year’s IF Innovation Award finalists:
1. ANote Music (Luxembourg). A marketplace for investing in music royalties. It enables publishers, record labels, and artists to list a portion of their royalty stream rights up for auction, introducing a new system of financing, as well as offering music enthusiasts and investors a new opportunity and the chance to own shares in their favorite music, thus turning music into an alternative asset class.
Find out more → anotemusic.com
2. FloatScans (Netherlands). Proprietary 3D scan technology that makes it possible to bring real-world objects to life digitally. The core focus is on art and cultural heritage, in which 95% of the objects are stored away or not publicly visible. With this technology, museums and galleries may unlock their full collections independent of available space + monetize collections by developing new business models.
Find out more → floatscans.com
3. ArtMe (Brazil). A platform (mobile app) where ArtCasets (stories, art descriptions and exhibition tours) can be submitted and translated into 19 languages. Content can be provided by the community with no museum censorship. ArtMe can be used to discover artworks within a city, making visits to museums and galleries even more pleasant.
Find out more → artme.app
4. Scan the World (UK). With over 18,000 objects online, it’s the largest digital museum of 3D printable cultural artefacts. It’s a community-built, open-source project archiving objects of cultural significance using 3D scanning and 3D printing technologies. Cultural institutions, heritage boards, and private collectors may use the 3D solution to generate new revenue streams: gift shops (selling high-quality facsimiles and merchandise), 3D scanning, and printing on demand.
Find out more → myminifactory.com/scantheworld/
5. Roots Studio (US). Works with indigenous and minority artists globally to digitize their unique and endangered heritage arts into new fashion and home products, through a model that can financially support their livelihoods, communities, and traditions. The model of the startup may be interesting for ethnic artists and collectors of ethnic fine arts.
Find out more → rootsstudio.co/
6. Firstrow (Germany). A VR distribution platform that enables performing arts companies and venues in the culture sector to monetize their production through digital (VR) showcasing. The distribution platform is augmented by a home delivery service offered for consumers who don’t possess their own VR device.
Find out more → vr-firstrow.com/
Following the pitch session the program will feature a panel discussion on impact investing in culture and creative industries with representatives of the leading social innovation organizations in Europe including Impact Hub Vienna, and the European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA).
“Being acknowledged with ANote Music as one of the finalists of the IF Innovation Awards comes as a great recognition for our company’s vision. It’s one of the first initiatives that is set to decorate startups in CultTech and this goes perfectly in line with the mission we are set out for: changing the status quo of the music industry by building a bridge with the financial markets. We’ve always put a big emphasis on the proprietary technology behind our trading platform and wish to showcase its potential. Winning this award would mean that also a jury of industry experts recognises ANote’s technology and services as a valuable addition to the cultural sector. Now that we made it this far in the competition, we’re really going to try and bring this win home,” concludes ANote Music’s co-founder and CEO of ANote Music.