Arficio wins innovation prize of VLAIO – “From now on you choose your interior through Augmented Reality”

As appeared in Made-In 19/10/2021 and The Belgian Chamber of Commerce (Voka) 01/10/2021.

The lockdown got Dries and Breght Van Baelen (27) from Zonhoven thinking. When their parents’ showroom in Hasselt had to close due to the corona measures, the twins came up with a sublime idea. From now on they will bring the furniture to the customers. The people themselves project the furniture in 3D in their own space via Augmented Reality. Successfully. Today, with their demo app, the brothers won the innovation premium from Agentschap Innoveren & Ondernemen (VLAIO) worth 50.000,00 euro.

Together with Voka – Chamber of Commerce Limburg, the brothers responded to the call from Agentschap Innoveren & Ondernemen (VLAIO). “Start-ups and companies of maximum 5 years old that want and are able to grow quickly and aim to employ at least 5 employees within 5 years, could apply for an innovation premium worth 50.000,00 euro,” explains Axelle Henrard, owner owner. -entrepreneurs from Voka – Chamber of Commerce Limburg. “The condition was that the entrepreneurs play a pioneering role within their market segment with their idea.”

Projecting in the ‘living room’

“And we are pioneers,” laughs commercial engineer Dries Van Baelen. “Breght, who is a civil engineer in Computer Science, and I come from an entrepreneurial family. During the lockdown, our parents had to close their showroom of office furniture in Hasselt. “Now what?” we said to each other. Then we came up with an idea to offer customers an alternative. If they couldn’t come to us, we would go to them. Virtual and therefore virus-free. Using Augmented Reality, we project 3D models of a manufacturer’s product portfolio into our customer’s living room or office. This way he can immediately see whether the dimensions are correct and whether the color fits with the rest of the interior. We now want to apply our software in apps that we make for other companies. We aim at companies that sell office furniture, kitchens, bathrooms, paint, floors and even art.”

The reference in the sector of interior design

“We have therefore set up a new company with Arficio”, Breght Van Baelen continues. “The aim is to become the reference in Augmented Reality within the sector of interior design by simply bringing the most user-friendly AR software to the market. Well, simply (laughs). In any case, we are well on our way. Thanks to the Innovative Starter Support Premium from Agentschap Innoveren & Ondernemen (VLAIO) we can further develop our software. And our demo app with which we can approach the first commercial contacts is ready. Take a look at our website