Microsoft, Oracle, Salesforce join COVID-19 vaccination records system project

As mass COVID-19 vaccination programs kick off in some countries around the world, a group of leading organizations including Microsoft, Oracle and Salesforce have come up with a new way of keeping track of those who have been given the jab, which could let work, play and travel resume as soon as possible. 

Brought together in a new project called the Vaccination Credential Initiative (VCI), the organizations have pitched a technology that would allow people who have been inoculated to keep and access a record of their immunization history in a digital “Health Wallet” app on their phones. Those without a smartphone would receive a paper version of the record containing a QR code to scan in order to access their credentials. 

With a digital health wallet directly connected to an affiliated lab, users would be able to demonstrate their health status when required, for example when returning to work

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Desktop Metal snaps up 3D printer, polymer specialist EnvisionTEC


Desktop Metal

Desktop Metal has acquired EnvisionTEC with the aim of disrupting the additive manufacturing market on a global scale. 

Announced on Friday, the purchase has been agreed for $300 million, made through a combination of cash reserves and Desktop Metal stock. 

Burlington, Massachusetts-based Desktop Metal is a provider of 3D printing solutions for the manufacturing sector, including prototype creation, tooling, and equipment designed to cut down the cost and improve the speed of additive manufacturing.

Founded in 2002, EnvisionTEC has headquarters in Michigan and Germany and is a provider of 3D printers for professional purposes. The company sells over 30 printers able to turn digital files into physical products and accounts for over 5,000 customers worldwide in markets including the medical field, dentistry, the automotive industry, and aerospace. 

The company specializes in digital light processing (DLP) solutions and accounts for over 140 accepted and pending patents, as well

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Nordic startups make advances in pet tech

The Nordics have already played a prominent role in introducing the term “pet tech”, and now its startup protagonists are hoping that leads to the region shaking its “testing ground” status to become top dog of the burgeoning sector.

The tag of being a playground to trial new applications and sub-sectors is nothing new; the region’s market size naturally lends to it being a stepping stone towards larger-scale international traction. However, when it comes to the rise of digitisation across pet ownership and management, the events of last year have accelerated these Nordic players towards the top of the international food chain.

One of these leaders is internationally renowned business, Pets4Homes – a UK-born company now benefiting from Nordic ownership and entrepreneurship as it looks to innovate and expand.

Axel Lagercrantz, CEO of Pet Media Group, who acquired the business together with co-founder Eyass Shakrah back in August 2019,

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