• World Economic Forum today announced its 2016 selection of the world’s most promising Technology Pioneers at the Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Tianjin, People’s Republic of China
• 30 companies were selected for their potential to significantly impact business and society through new technologies and advance the Fourth Industrial Revolution
• Upskill, formerly APX Labs, and developer of the Skylight platform for enterprise wearable technology, was selected for its contributions in helping modernize and up-skill the global industrial workforce
• The full list of recognized Technology Pioneers can be viewed here
• As the company accelerates its growth and brings innovation to the global workforce, Upskill announces Magid Abraham will join its board as Executive Chairman, and Linda Abraham will assume the role of Vice Chairman
Tianjin, People’s Republic of China, 27 June 2016 – Upskill, formerly APX Labs and developer of the Skylight platform for the connected workforce, was today recognized by the World Economic Forum as a 2016 Technology Pioneer—a group of 30 of the world’s most innovative companies with the potential to significantly impact business and society. Selected for its pioneering work in fuelling the connected workforce, Upskill is rapidly scaling from entrepreneurial vision to global practice. Some of the world’s largest enterprises are using the company’s products to help their workforces improve productivity by enabling ‘deskless workers’ to perform their job functions faster, more efficiently and more accurately.
Upskill delivers solutions that up-skill and modernize global field service, maintenance and manufacturing personnel by delivering line-of-sight information via smart glasses to workers on demand, where and when they need it. At scale, the technology has the potential to have a profound benefit to the world’s workforce.
“Improving productivity through wearable technology offers a step function change,” said Randall MacPherson, senior manager of Boeing’s Electrical Strategic Fabrication Center in Mesa, Arizona. “We’ve seen significant productivity increases in our wiring harness facility from this technology where we’ve tested it, and it resulted in a substantial improvement to first time quality. Wearable technology is helping us amplify the power of our work force.”
Today’s recognition by the World Economic Forum will enable Upskill to accelerate its considerable traction to date, broadly showcasing the profound impact its technology can have on the workforce at global scale. To formally accept the honor, Brian Ballard, CEO and co-founder of Upskill, is in attendance at the Annual Meeting of the New Champions, and will participate in the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2017 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland.
“We welcome Upskill in this group of extraordinary pioneers,” said Fulvia Montresor, Head of Technology Pioneers at the World Economic Forum. “Upskill is among those companies that help shape the Fourth Industrial Revolution, a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work and relate to one another. Through the platform of the World Economic Forum, it will be able to scale and share its technology and achieve a larger impact.”
Upskill’s technology is already in use today across a wide range of industrial operations including manufacturing, field service, repair, training and compliance. Its customers span numerous industries and include some of the world’s largest and most innovative businesses.
“Upskill is helping advance our connected workforce,” said Sue Siegel, CEO of GE Ventures and healthymagination. “As both a customer and investor, GE sees potential in providing employees with heads-up, hands-free technology that enables productivity. We’re excited to be working with the Upskill team.”
Underscoring Upskill’s rapid growth and potential to have a profound impact on the global workforce, the company announced today that Magid and Linda Abraham, co-founders of Paragren Technologies and comScore (Nasdaq: SCOR), have been named Executive Chairman and Vice Chairman, respectively. Both are early investors in Upskill and bring a range of experience in growing technology companies at a global scale.
“I congratulate Brian and the Upskill team on being named to the WEF 2016 class of Technology Pioneers,” said Mr. Abraham. “I share the World Economic Forum’s enthusiasm and belief that this company has transformative potential on a global scale and that the Upskill team are stand-out pioneers in the wearable technology field. I look forward to working with them to help realize that potential and to create a more valuable and efficient workforce.”
“In a world where much of the talk about technology and robotics leads quickly to discussions about eliminating human jobs, Upskill in contrast, is building products that advance human potential,” said Ms. Abraham. “Enhancing productivity for the ‘desk-less workforce,’ especially in manufacturing, field service and logistics has transformative potential. The Upskill team has pioneered some very compelling applications across a range of Fortune 50 clients who are leaders in their fields, and they are just getting started. I’m excited to be working alongside Brian and the executive team.”
“We are honored to be named a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and thrilled that Magid and Linda Abraham are committed to working with us to help accelerate the company’s growth,” said Mr. Ballard. “The speed of innovation is a hallmark of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and we are so proud that our Skylight platform is part of the movement to create empowered, connected workers. Every day we see the tremendous value of delivering critical information and allowing employees to collaborate like never before to rapidly create the transformative technologies, products and solutions of the future.”
The 2016 Technology Pioneers were selected from among hundreds of applicants by a selection committee of 68 academics, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and corporate executives. Notable members of the committee include Jeffrey M. Drazen (Editor-in-Chief, The New England Journal of Medicine) and Sang Yup Lee (Distinguished Professor and Director, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology). Honor on criteria including innovation, potential impact, working prototype, viability and leadership. Past recipients include Google (2001), Wikimedia (2007), Mozilla (2007), Kickstarter (2011) and Airbnb (2013). More information on past winners can be found here.
All information on this year’s Technology Pioneers can be found here: http://wef.ch/techpioneers
About Upskill: Since 2010, Upskill has been pioneering the application of wearable technology for the hands-on workforce. Upskill’s Skylight software product runs on many types of smart glasses and other wearable devices, integrates with existing business systems, and is used today in a wide range of industrial operations including manufacturing, field service, repair, training, and compliance. Customers include Boeing, GE, Rio Tinto, ExxonMobil, Jabil, Merck, Shell, Johnson & Johnson, Baker Hughes, Applied Materials and Westinghouse. For additional information, visit www.upskill.io.
About the World Economic Forum: The World Economic Forum, committed to improving the state of the world, is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. (http://www.weforum.org/).