Launching industry-changing technologies through novel support
Luminate helped Lidrotec meet its development milestones
With their ability to be nimble, maintain focus, and act fast, startups are in an advantageous position to spearhead the latest ideas for solving industry problems. However, they often lack access to critical resources and the funding necessary to bring these ideas fully to market. Technology accelerators help fill this gap by providing mentorship, connections, and funding opportunities, in addition to education.
Bochum, Germany-based startup Lidrotec experienced this value last year during their participation in Luminate — the world’s largest accelerator for companies working on technologies enabled by optics, photonics, and imaging (OPI). Located in Rochester, NY, Luminate was able to connect Lidrotec to the rich resources that exist in the region, sometimes referred to as the optics capital of the world.
"Luminate provided us with a new network into the United States, along with contacts to suppliers and clients,” said Alexander Igelmann, CEO of Lidrotec. “These vital connections are helping us meet our development milestones, which include market validation for our novel laser technology."
Lidrotec's patent-pending wafer-dicing laser technology for the semiconductor industry enables thinner cuts with a virtually 0% damage rate, providing significant cost savings and productivity increases. Its innovation is in the efficient use of liquids in the laser processing zone, which cool and rinse wafers while the laser cuts out the chips. The resulting benefits include thinner cuts with higher precision, no damages to the material, clean surfaces without debris, and higher processing speeds, all without the need to adapt the production process.
Through Luminate, Lidrotec was introduced to AIM Photonics, which is helping the company build the infrastructure for developing the next iteration of its technology and execute on its plans to establish U.S. operations. Luminate also provided Lidrotec with $100,000 in immediate funding, and the company went on to win “Company of the Year'' and $1 million in follow-on funding at Luminate’s Finals event last year.
“Our story should inspire other founders working with OPI to apply to Luminate to change the trajectory of their innovation timelines — especially if they’re looking for a soft landing into the U.S. market,” said Ingelmann. To date, Luminate has invested more than $16 million in 63 companies, which now have a combined estimated value of $650 million.
Companies that are interested are encouraged to attend a fall informational session and to apply to the programme from mid-September until 8 January 2024. Anyone interested in innovation is encouraged to attend Luminate Finals 2023 for free on Sept. 27, and to vote for their favourite company to help them win $10,000 in cash.
For more information on Luminate, visit luminate.org.
Dr. Sujatha Ramanujan, Managing Director of Luminate