Startup News

Chile’s top inventions look to the global market

The Avonni National Innovation Prize (Premio Nacional de Innovación Avonni) recognizes Chile’s top 15 most innovative ideas every year. This year, El Mercurio, which helps host the event, reports on four companies that are already looking to reach a global audience.

InstaCrops: Founded in 2013 during an agricultural crisis in Chile, Instacrops installs solar-powered hardware to constantly monitor water levels and other indicators to provide reports that prevent crop loss. The monitors can communicate directly with mobile devices, even sending SMS messages to alert when water levels are low. Instacrops works with everyone from Monsanto to smallholder farmers and is looking to expand through Chile and then to Peru.

Bailac: Bailac started 100 years ago as a family tire-repair business operating in Chile’s mining zone. They have reinvented themselves today with new real-time tire monitoring software that is saving the mining industry millions of dollars a year.

Reuse: Founder Mauricio Svriz traveled to China and Russia to learn to build ecological bricks made of ash from electric plants. These bricks are four times harder than traditional clay bricks and don’t require baking, so they produce much less CO2. The bricks have not yet been approved for use in construction in Chile, but Svriz is already in negotiations with Colombia and Ecuador to start exporting his new product.

The vaccine for human respiratory syncytial virus: Alexis Kalergis, biologist from the Catholic University of Chile, has created the first vaccine against human respiratory syncytial virus, which causes respiratory infections in 54.5 million infants a year. The vaccine is already being produced and tested in the United States under the watch of the FDA, and has received the recognition of PATH, an international health organization funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Read more about the Avonni 2017 winners here.

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