One of the lucky startups that got into our first, and already legendary Brightlands Innovation Factory Incubation Program, is Device Company. As the startup that comes from the country famous for its legal drug usage — the Netherlands, Device Company came up with a rather revolutionary idea. This blog post introduces Device Company, its product and looks into its future potentials.
What is the problem?
The most commonly used illegal drug is marijuana. According to the 2008 World Drug Report by United Nations, approximately 4% of the world’s population between ages 15 and 64 abuses this drug. This number has certainly risen since 2008, and is without a doubt the highest in the country, where worldwide-prohibited drugs are fully available — the Netherlands. What follows, is the increased rate of the crime commitment. In order to minimize the rate of committed crimes, it is therefore crucial to detect the illegal drug usage as soon as possible, as in total approximately 15% of all the crime is drug-related.
“In total, 15% of all the crime is drug related, we are really trying to reduce that number,” — Kees van Gorsel, Director, Device Company
Here is where the problem occurs. One of the biggest problems related to the increasing illegal drug usage is drug testing. To be precise, it is not that much about the testing itself as about the time it takes to get results. One has to wait for weeks to get drug test results. Alternatively, tests are done with a color-screening test, which is perceived as unsafe with limited availability and data output.
How is the problem solved?
Thanks to the Device Company this problem can be solved. Device Company has developed Dcube, which helps create a safe, drug-free environment. Dcube allows policemen to scan and analyze drug in an easy-to-use way. As a portable drug test device it provides a user with much more extensive output that the methods used before.
“Dcube analyses a broad range of materials — from powder, through fluids to fabrics — you name it.”
How does it work?
Dcube allows for testing and analyzing the substance and in a few seconds it identifies the different components in the drugs sample. The final output contains the fingerprint information of the samples, a pre-filled-in police report, the detailed measurement data and the date, time and GPS location.
Comparing to other methods that use the RAMAN spectroscopy, this method works with absorption and reflection of the drug, which is less aggressive. It allows for detection of all the chemicals the drug consists of.
“The final output contains the fingerprint information of the samples, a pre-filled-in police report, the detailed measurement data and the date, time and GPS location.”
“I’m not aiming to beat drugs, but we have to try to make it safer for the people. In total, 15% of all the crime is drug related, we are really trying to reduce that number,” — says Kees van Gorsel, the Director of Device Company. The idea of Dcube follows the request of policemen, who have trouble with timely and accurate drug detection. Although, Kees van Gorsel and his team do not expect to win the fight against the drug industry, they aim at making the environment safer.
“The idea of Dcube followed the request of policemen, who had trouble with timely and accurate drug detection.”
At the moment Kees van Gorsel’s main goal is to focus on the field of law enforcement. However, Kees also wishes to explore multiple fields, in which Device Company can add value. In the end, as van Gorsel highlights, Dcube analyses a broad range of materials — from powder, through fluids to fabrics — you name it.
We are thrilled to have Device Company on board, and we look forward to seeing their progress during our first Incubation Program #BIFINCS16.