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Creating faster data links

Versics is an ETH spin-off offering optoelectronic devices that exchange data globally. Their mission is to enable the data of tomorrow, today.

David Pohl, Fabian Kaufmann, Marc Reig-Escalé and Alfonso Martínez-García

Could you explain what your startup does in a few sentences?

Versics AG produces plug-and-play fiber-optic devices used in data centers, intercontinental sub-sea communication, and satellite telecom links to expand and optimize global communication networks.

Our products contain microchips, optical fibers and electrical connectors that exchange data at high-speed, making fiber-optic networks more energy-efficient and reliable. As a result, our devices reduce both opex to the customers (energy-efficient data transmission) and capex (customers avoid hardware duplication).

Your startup is an ETH spinoff. How important do you think is the support of the university in your project?

There are many advantages of being an ETH spinoff. First, prestige and branding give an initial competitive advantage in the early negotiations with B2B customers since what the company does comes from a rigorous, scientific and reliable source.

The networking capabilities of ETH also play a central role through existing collaborations, event organizations or alumni.

Finally, the lab infrastructure for deep-tech ventures is also key when creating cutting-edge technologies and new solutions.

Do you think Switzerland is the right place to launch a startup?

We incorporated Versics AG in Switzerland because we think it is the place to be for a Micro-tech startup.

Switzerland has dynamic industrial and deep-tech sectors, which build common bridges across corporations and investors and reinforce a large talent pool.

Which advice would you give to a new early-stage startup?

Focus on (potential) customers, listen to them and maximize market-product fit as early as possible – no sustainable business runs without customers.

Build a team that is ambitious and not homogeneous. Mixing first-time founders with members who have industry experience, different backgrounds or are at different stages in their careers can work wonders!

Be strategic and draft a working plan with what matters – it is easier to pursue many projects, collaborations or ideas instead of saying no, which would distract you from creating a valuable product.


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