According to Gartner about 40 percent of organizations are testing AI solutions or piloting them worldwide right now. As Handelsblatt lately reported, Berlin is one of the epicenters of AI in Germany. While there is still a lot of rumor and misunderstanding about Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) as well as artificial neural network or analytics there are 10 ladies in Berlin that are spearheading the Machine Learning movement in Berlin — most of them without an IT background and from across the world! These 10 female entrepreneurs are a great example how female and international the Berlin deeptech ecosystem is.
Hajnalka Hejja, Founder of Super Izzy AI: A medical doctor by trade, the Hungarian founder developed a chatbot for female teenagers and young women. After working in biotechnology and the pharmaceutical industry both in business and scientific roles, Hajnalka is now applying machine learning and Natural Language Processing (NLP) at the the intersections of medical sciences and entrepreneurship. Currently 30,000 women are using their “AI health companion” Super Izzy.
Darja Gutnick, Founder of Bunch: After studies in The Netherlands and Argentina, Russia-born Darja founded her first startup in Buenos Aires. Later on the psychologist consulted companies such as Rocket Internet and BWM before she founded her second startup in Berlin. With 10 employees from 8 countries, at Bunch.aishe is currently working with her two co-founders on improving the effectiveness of teams with the help of machine learning and organizational psychology. Bunch.ai’s Natural Language Processing core analyzed more than 1 m messages. The company works with fast-growth companies such as Infarm, N26 and Digital Ocean. Together with Louis Coppey from P9 capital and Lele Canfora Darja organizes the Machine Learning focused meetup series m-l.berlin.
Claudia Pohlink, Head of AI at T-Labs: Having a background in Data Science, Data Management as well as Innovation Management, Claudia Pohlink connects business and Data Science aspects of Analytics and Artificial Intelligence. At Deutsche Telekom she has been in charge of “Data Cockpit” (data transparency and data control for end customers) and the “Data Analytics Portal” (internal community for data and AI use cases). Moreover, she plays an active role in Berlin’s Machine Learning and startup communities and regularly shares her knowledge as guest speaker at meetups (#DigitalWanderlust) and reviewer at Berlin´s universities such as Beuth Hochschule für Technik and Steinbeis Hochschule.
Tina Kluewer, Co-Founder & CEO at parlamind: While most of the portrayed female entrepreneurs have a non-technical background, Dr. Tina Klüwer has graduated and worked in some of the most prestigious tech institutions in Germany among it the University of Saarland and the German Center of Artificial Intelligence (DFKI). She uses her expertise in computational linguistics, natural language processing, artificial intelligence, machine learning and semantic technologies to found Parlamind in 2015. The AI solution for customer support understands text and answers emails for ecommerce customer support.
Elena Poughia, MD of DataConomy & Founder of Data Natives Conference: Greek-born Poughia came to Berlin in 2014 to join the company builder Hitfox where she ran their venture DataConomy, an english speaking content platform for data science and fintech. In the last 4 years, the young entrepreneur that holds a degree in modern and contemporary art, expanded the community to 60,000 data experts worldwide and established Data Natives, a conference for data scientists, machine learning experts and data analysts.
Dr. Vedrana Högqvist-Tabor, Founder of Boost Thyroid: After working as Director of Scientific Research at the successful FemTech startup Clue, Vedrana decided to start her own company. In late December 2016, the Croatian developed a smartphone app (Boost Health) as well as a conversational AI (aka chatbot Hashiboto) for patients with autoimmune diseases. At Boost Thyroid she is applying her medical expertise gained at the famous Swedish Karolinska Institutet that has also been in charge of selecting the Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine since 1901.
Videesha Böckle, Managing Director at Signals VC: According to her own words the investor is working in the “datafication of businesses”. Starting in 2017, the British venture capital expert is in charge of Signals VC, a €100m fund working with and backing deep tech companies in AI, ML and Big Data. With her growing team she focuses on post-seed investments in horizontal sector-agnostic solutions, vertical sector-specific solutions: insurance, healthcare, real estate and mobility.
Alexa Gorman, VP of the SAP.io fund: The experienced business expert Gorman started working on one of Germany’s oldest and most renown unicorns — SAP — close to 20 years ago. Her in-depth knowledge of the B2B sector she is now using to coordinate SAP’s early-stage startup investments as well as acceleration and incubation programs. Based in Paris and Berlin, Alexa Gorman scouts for the best artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning solutions across the world.
Sofie Quidenus-Wahlforss, Founder of omni:us: Together with 4 C-level experts, Sofie is running omni:us, formerly known as SearchInk, which is bringing AI to the paper driven world of insurance companies by processing digital documents, by detecting handwriting and by extracting valuable data. While omni:us pivoted rather recently, Sofie has been working in Machine Learning since 2000. 18 years ago she started a robotic book scanning company that digitized over 1 billion pages from archives & libraries in more than 125 countries.
Nadine Rothkamp, Marketing Expert at Amazon/Alexa Skills: With a background in B2B and developer marketing, Nadine held various positions in the tech start-up and corporate world such as Wattx/Viessmann and Deutsche Telekom. She joined the Amazon office in the heart of Berlin with the focus to educate and enable the German speaking developer community to build new solutions based on Amazons AI-powered voice service Alexa, successfully used by corporates and startups alike. Nadine loves to share her passion for voice as the next interface at meetups and hackathons. In the previous years, she also supported women in tech as mentor in the Berlin Geekettes community.
If you know more exceptional ladies in Machine Learning in Berlin, reach out and let’s expand the list!