Tieto has launched an initiative to support Swedish startups who want to develop new healthcare solutions by utilising AI. The purpose of the AI Accelerator Program is to help companies explore the possibilities of the latest technology and speed up the process from idea generation to functional services. The Swedish Innovation Agency Vinnova is co-financing the program, which gives participating entrepreneurs access to Tieto's technical platform, customer base, experts and business coaches.
Over the period of twelve weeks, the participants will receive coaching and tools in areas such as business development, design thinking, machine learning, computer science, marketing and sales to help them take the next step in their development.
"To drive an idea through the various stages from development to commercialisation is a challenge for many startups, who often lack practical experience with AI. Our team, consisting of former entrepreneurs with extensive experience from the Nordic startup scene, can help these companies sharpen the business potential of their ideas. We look forward to contributing to the creation of innovative solutions for healthcare and a smarter society", said Ishtar Touailat, Head of Innovation Incubation at Tieto.
Tieto has extensive experience in driving digitalisation within healthcare through a variety of innovation programs, in collaboration with academia, business and government. Initially, four Swedish startup companies have been accepted for the new AI accelerator starting in April.
Transfers of ownership in shares or companies will not occur. Patent and intellectual property rights also remain with the participating companies. One of the companies, Byon8, was started in 2015 with the aim to provide patients and caregivers with an efficient medical service through AI.
"The demand is rising and we have grown rapidly with many co-workers who have a background within healthcare. Now it´s time for the next step on our journey. Our AI-driven solution can support patients and caregivers by automating medical history management, providing more precise diagnostics and offering efficient tools for follow-up and documentation. Tieto´s accelerator helps us to explore new opportunities with AI, develop our business model and expand our network", said Josef Murad, CEO at Byon8.
The rapid development of AI is transforming most industries. According to the market analyst Tractica, the global market for AI software grows from $ 3.2 billion in 2016 to $ 89.8 billion by 2025, with the Nordic countries at the forefront of development.
Also, a survey conducted by YouGov and Tieto, shows that almost three out of four Swedes believe that new technology powered by AI will enhance their everyday lives, but few believe that healthcare will be significantly affected. Only one in seven believes that the area will be affected by AI to a high extent over the next decade, which goes against many experts' predictions.
"The awareness of this development is relatively low in general. Implementation of AI and machine learning is already on its way, also within the healthcare and welfare sector. There is no time to lose, companies need to focus on new business models and ecosystems that build on this new technology. This initiative will help to further accelerate the development", concluded Ishtar Touailat.