Celonis nominated for German President’s Award

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The TUM graduates Bastian Nominacher, Alexander Rinke and Martin Klenk (from lef

The TUM graduates Bastian Nominacher, Alexander Rinke and Martin Klenk (from left) are among Germany's most successful company founders. Image: Deutscher Zukunftspreis / Ansgar Pudenz

The software maker Celonis, which got its start at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), is one of the three nominees for the 2019 Deutscher Zukunftspreis, the German President’s Award for Innovation in Science and Technology. It offers process mining software to help companies analyze all of their digital business processes. In 2018 Celonis was valued at 1 billion US dollars.

The Celonis founders, Bastian Nominacher, Martin Klenk and Alexander Rinke, developed software for process mining while studying at TUM. It investigates the everyday processes in companies, generates analysis in the form of understandable graphics and suggests improvements. This automatic consulting can be applied to all kinds of processes that leave digital traces, whether they are part of a pharmaceutical company’s manufacturing process or the logistics of a trading company.

Founded in 2011, Celonis was quick to achieve success: In 2015 it was ranked as Germany’s fastest-growing technology company. The New York office was established a year later. In its second round of financing in 2018, the company was valued at 1 billion US dollars , thus taking its place among the small number of German "unicorns". Global players and mid-sized companies in 20 different industries are using the software, including one third of all companies listed in the German DAX index. That makes Celonis the global market leader in process mining.

Support with the start-up process was provided at TUM. In addition to the advice from the TUM start-up advising team , the chairs for Information Systems , Industrial Design and Entrepreneurship helped to develop the young company’s business model and corporate design. The company and the university are still closely linked. More than 25% of the 700 employees are from TUM.

The Deutscher Zukunftspreis is presented annually in recognition of visionary technologies. The main criteria for the jury are the level of scientific and technological innovation, market readiness, the potential for job creation and the contribution to a sustainable economy. The final decision and awards presentation will take place in Berlin on November 27. In 2017 the current director of the Munich School of Robotics and Machine Inteligence of TUM, Prof. Sami Haddadin, was awarded with his team for the development of assistance robots.

Every year more than 70 technology-based companies are established at TUM. TUM and UnternehmerTUM, the Center for Innovation and Business Creation , support new companies with programs tailored to the phases of the start-up process - from writing the business model to management training, and from market entry to a possible IPO. Up to 30 teams can use offices in the TUM Incubator to prepare the launch of their companies. TUM accompanies the most promising candidates on a two-week trip to Silicon Valley. UnternehmerTUM offers the MakerSpace , a 1,500 square meter high-tech workshop for building prototypes, and Bio.Kitchen , a biotechnology laboratory for experiments. According to the respected survey "Start-up Radar" , this support is unparalleled at Germany’s major universities.

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