3 innovation and digital news in 1 minute. Every Monday. Episode 264
News 1. Meet Yanu, the robot bartender
Yanu is a compact bar booth with a robot arm that mixes all kinds of drinks and cocktails. But not only that, Yanu even resembles the social abilities of a good bartender. Yanu will crack a joke or have a fun chat with you while preparing your drink. Just like a good bartender would. Currently at display at the Dubai Expo in the Estonian pavilion. Opinion: Robotic bartenders like Yanu could be the future of bars and nightclubs. But they can also bring bars into new places like airports and trainstations without space for a big pub. This machine looks like it’s coming straight out of Star-Wars or any other science fiction movie.
Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if D@rth Vad€r, Batm@n or Ironm@n would stand next to me while ordering at Yanu!
News 2. Boltified Tallin
Bolt is a mobility and delivery company from Tallinn, often called the European Uber. While Uber has been all over the media in recent years, Bolt quietly built a giant mobility and delivery empire across Europe. Now also pushing into Europe’s wild on-demand quick grocery delivery game and with new financial power thanks to its latest mega funding round of $600m (at $4.75bn valuation) led by Sequoia. Opinion: In its home town Tallinn, Bolt is already omnipresent: every other car on the streets is a Bolt ride hailing car, sharing scooters, bikes and cars at every corner and dozens of Bolt delivery riders on the streets. Bolt is rolling out more and more of its mobility and delivery services across Europe. Valuation of $4.75bn is still low compared to Uber’s $76bn.
With its new funding, which European cities are we going to see being “boltified” next?
News 3. Modularbank turns every company into a fintech
Modularbank offers API-based, modular (as the name suggests) banking and finance services to traditional banks, to challenger banks and widely to all other companies. The latter is their specialty, so called “embedded finance”. Financial services like lending and brokerage in non-financial applications like e-commerce or market places. Opinion: According to Modularbank, embedding financial services into traditionally non-financial applications can increase both customer satisfaction and revenue. Modularbank is backed by Tallin based Karma Capital — the regional early-stage investor, investing in Baltics countries and Finland.
Kind of the “little sister” of Swedisch Tink (overtaken by Visa) or Germany’s Solarisbank with a mission to make every business a fintech business.
Author is the research team (10 trend scouters) at specialist Space and Lemon Innovations (Hamburg, Berlin) — scouting innovations in main tech geographies, AI development, virtual worlds and e-commerce. Excerpts of research are gathered here in original weekly news since 2016, always with an opinion — no re-write of TechCrunch.
Come back next Monday and share your opinion.