Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has announced the launch of its second Sixth Sense start-up challenge: digital reality and visualisation for a sustainable future.

Hexagon launched the Sixth Sense open innovation platform in January 2022 to nurture start-ups in the advanced manufacturing space with Hexagon resources. Its first winners were selected in June and are rapidly scaling with Hexagon’s portfolio and impressive customer base. Its Manufacturing Intelligence division provides engineering, production and quality technology and services to the world’s biggest and most innovative technology leaders around the world, from customers such as Audi and Boeing, to partners like Microsoft.

Sixth Sense has now opened applications for its second cohort, inviting entries from start-ups with innovative technologies in advanced visualisation, digital realities, artificial intelligence, and automation. A cohort will be selected based on a pitching competition in September, after which the platform will fast-track the companies through an intensive 10-week programme to inform and refine their offering with Hexagon’s market insights. Up to three start-ups will be selected from that shortlist at the final in December and offered the opportunity to scale their business alongside Hexagon. The winners will also have the unique opportunity to be part of Hexagon’s open platform for smart manufacturing collaboration; the “Connect, Innovate, Empower” Nexusecosystem.

This cohort’s theme builds on Hexagon’s commitment to accelerate innovation and drive the global shift to a new sustainable way of operating. Sixth Sense will see a focus on the following areas of emerging technology: digital twin innovations, metaverse factory design, predictive and prescriptive intelligence, and autonomous and sustainable manufacturing operations.

Parth Joshi, Chief Product Officer and Chief Technology Officer of Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, said: “The manufacturing metaverse will be a game-changer in how we interact with technology and create resilience to complex industry issues. However, innovation doesn’t happen in a silo, and the first Sixth Sense cohort proved the mutual benefits of bringing ambitious start-ups into our ecosystem and together reaching new answers to difficult problems. We challenge the start-up community to pitch us their best digital reality services and let us help them turn those virtual solutions into real-life commercial success and technological progress.”

Milan Kocić, Head of Sixth Sense, Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, said: “Sixth Sense is open to applications from anyone, anywhere in the world. We’re excited to see how we can work together with new emerging leaders in manufacturing to meet society’s current and future challenges, as we believe that diverse backgrounds lead to better ideas. We have seen first-hand how start-ups can be a source of truly ground-breaking innovation and are looking forward to welcoming the latest best-of-the-best into the fold in September.”

The selection criteria for Sixth Sense include:

  • $3m or less in revenue
  • 1-5 years in existence
  • Post seed, Series A, Series A+
  • Proven traction and product-market fit
  • Propensity to scale

Preferred qualities:

  • Validation of investment from third party
  • IP & licenses

To view the full Sixth Sense programme criteria, specific challenges and apply, visit sixthsense.hexagon.com.