Berlin start-ups: high-tech in crisis


E Sicoya actually has everything an exciting company story needs: a multi-billion dollar market, a promising field of business, highly developed technology and ambitious engineers. It’s about global internet traffic and how it can be better managed. After all, a lot of data runs through data centers of large cloud providers such as Amazon, Google or Microsoft. There they are saved and processed. However, the internal server connections in the data silos are becoming the bottleneck for the infrastructure. The Berlin start-up promises a solution. This limitation can be overcome with electronics and optics. Silicon photonics is the magic word; extremely small electronic and photonic structures are packed on a chip.

Telephone conversation with Sven Otte, one of the five founders of the company that was spun off from the Technical University in 2015. There is a much less euphoric tone here. The year 2020 is still in his bones. They actually wanted to raise fresh money from investors quickly. “The Corona crisis caught us in the process.” Result: an acute financial crisis. After all, Sicoya relies on international donors, from America and Asia. But they want to know exactly where their dollars and euros are going. “No investor will invest in a company he has not even seen personally,” says Otte. But how can that be possible in a time of severely restricted international travel and strict hygiene regulations?

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#Berlin startups hightech crisis


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