With our shortlist of companies chosen, we are excitedly heading towards selection day on 02 November when we will choose the final six or seven cohort members who will enter the Sixth Sense programme for challenge two. 

Challenge two is all about: visualisation and digital reality and intelligence and automation. More detail on these challenge areas can be found in this blog

Helping to choose this final line-up of start-ups will be our panel of expert judges – all senior leaders cherry-picked from across Hexagon. Their opinions will inform the names that go forward into our intensive scaling programme. 

Our audience will also have the opportunity to have their say – with one cohort place allocated exclusively to the audience favourite. But guiding us every step of the day will  be our six judges. So let’s meet them!

Arno Zinke 

Arno is an experienced software leader with a strong background in digital innovation, software practice, and cloud platforms. In his role as SVP Software Engineering, he drives alignment and strategic innovation across all Hexagon MI business units.  

Prior to joining Hexagon, he supported Autodesk’s platform transformation in various leadership positions, most recently as Chief Platform Architect. Arno is an entrepreneur who founded two companies and has worked on a wide range of technologies, products, and platforms in different industries throughout his career, from media and entertainment to manufacturing and construction. 

He holds a PhD in computer science and has a strong academic background in computer vision, graphics and simulation as well as machine learning-based techniques. Arno is a startup mentor and investor. 

 Dhiraj Mohan 

 Dhiraj is the Portfolio Director for the Innovation Hub and Ventures. His role predominantly covers business incubation, M&A , portfolio management and compliance. 

Prior to Hexagon he worked for Schneider Electric in engineering and product management serving clients in sectors like oil & gas, pharmaceuticals and power generation. 

In addition to his professional experience , Dhiraj holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering (Honours)  and an MBA.  

Daniela Handl 

Daniela has a PhD in Computer Science and a background in software development. She has been with Volume Graphics for 20 years, having helped grow the company from a small team of less than 10 to a global team of more than 170 employees, with subsidiaries in the USA, Singapore, China, and Japan in addition to headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany.

Daniela joined the Volume Graphics management team 10 years ago, with a special focus on customer relationships and providing pioneering solutions tailored to industry needs. She has served as Director of the US and Singapore subsidiaries for many years now, and recently took on the role of General Manager of Volume Graphics. In this new capacity, one of her main focuses will be to continue the successful integration of Volume Graphics into Hexagon as it continues its journey to empowering an autonomous, sustainable future.

Jason Walker 

As General Manufacturing Practice Lead, Jason is responsible for driving success across the small-to-medium sized manufacturing businesses that Hexagon serves. With over fifteen years’ experience in the discrete manufacturing industry, having both run his own SMB and consulted across the sector, Jason now works with Hexagon’s global sales, marketing, and R&D teams to ensure that customer-led priorities are being addressed by Hexagon’s solutions and services, in order to accelerate growth in a sustainable manner across the global distributed manufacturing network. 

Karolina Rzepiejewska-Malyska

Karolina is Vice President Product Lines within the metrology devices business unit. She has been working in various roles in high-tech in the area of inspection and metrology for 17 years, developing both technologies and product portfolios with a strong focus on value creating disruptive innovation. 

Stephen Graham

Stephen is Executive Vice President and General Manager of Nexus. He worked for over 25 years in the technology industry before joining Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence Division as Vice President of marketing in 2017. More recently he led the metrology and production software business unit before being part of the founding team for Nexus – our new cloud platform for digital engineering and manufacturing – which he now leads.  

We’re thrilled to have such a high-calibre judging panel and we’re sure they’ll bring lots of experience to the tough job of picking our final line-up. Watch this space!