Copyright: Manuel Stein

Award for "Digital Start-up of the Year 2023"

On 18 April 2023, the Konstanz-based start-up Subsequent GmbH was awarded the 1st prize as "Digital Start-up of the Year 2023" by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK). Everything started with a doctoral project at the University of Konstanz.

Subsequent GmbH, based in Konstanz, won the 1st prize of the prestigious "Digital Start-up of the Year 2023" award, which comes with 50,000 euros in prize money. Subsequent provides systems for automated skeletal motion analysis. "You do not need more than a smartphone with an AI to collect detailed human skeletal motion data and optimize the movements of athletes, detect neurological diseases or analyze games," says jury member Dr Renate Weisse in her laudatory speech. Among other things, the jury was particularly impressed by the scalability and the great potential in many different areas such as amateur and professional sports, healthcare and fitness.

With this award, the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) honours companies for innovative information and communication technologies that have been particularly successful in implementing their start-up idea within a short period of time. Managing director Manuel Stein is delighted about the award: "For us, this is more than an award, it's a seal of quality that honours us incredibly. It confirms that we meet the needs of the time with our founding idea and its implementation. We especially thank the University of Konstanz for the great support provided along our way."

From start-up grant to profitable young company
In his doctoral research, computer scientist Stein not only wanted to take technical-tactical analysis in football matches to a new level by processing detailed motion data. He was also looking for methods to visually display analyses in an automated way during a match. After completing his doctorate at the University of Konstanz, he acquired an EXIST start-up grant together with Philip Zimmermann and Marc Lüttecke, two other graduates of the Department of Computer and Information Science. Daniel Keim, professor of data analysis and visualization at the University of Konstanz, was their project mentor. The start-up grant supported them for the first 12 months on their way to Subsequent GmbH, which they founded in February 2021.

Today, the start-up offers innovative solutions for collecting 3D skeletal and position data from simple, that is, also from non-professional video recordings. These solutions are very fast – available in real-time – and work even with poor quality footage. Now they can analyze smartphone videos, too. The Konstanz software company's customers include not only the Austrian national football team and German Bundesliga clubs, but also representatives of other sports such as the German ice hockey association, slalom skiing and skating, as well as other activities, e.g. home fitness. TV stations have also started to express interest in these real-time analyses. "For us, this huge interest means that we have been in the black from day one and can fund ourselves", Stein emphasizes.

The start-up continues to maintain its connection to the University of Konstanz by initiating cooperation projects with scientists. In 2022, they acquired funding from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for their project SMARTGAIT with Markus Gruber, professor of sports science at the university and his research team. This project aims to provide digital motion analysis in the field of medicine.

About the award:
The award is given to companies that have implemented their start-up idea particularly successfully within a short period of time. Cash prizes totalling 100,000 euros are awarded, which must be used as growth capital for the company. In addition, there is an audience award of 10,000 euros, with the audience voting online to select the start-up with the best video entry.

Read the press release of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (in German).

More information about Subsequent GmbH is available on the website

 Key facts:

  • Start-up Subsequent GmbH ( is awarded 1st prize as "Digital Start-up of the Year 2023" by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK).
  • The first prize is worth 50,000 euros as growth capital for the company.
  • Managing director Manuel Stein completed his doctorate in the Department of Computer and Information Science at the University of Konstanz on the analysis of motion data in team sports.
  • A cooperation agreement with the University of Konstanz makes it possible for the start-up to use rooms and IT infrastructure at the university for a set period.
  • Subsequent GmbH continues to collaborate with scientists at the University of Konstanz in projects such as SMARTGAIT, which is funded by the BMBF.
  • Three start-ups were honoured and an audience award was presented A total of 110,000 euros in prize money was distributed.