Meet Jonas Wüst the CEO of Tethys Robotics

Please tell us about Tethys Robotics

Tethys Robotics builds underwater drones to automate inspections in rough waters. We’re an ETH Spinn-Off that finally enables robots to autonomously navigate in complex underwater environments despite poor visibility and strong currents. Our technology stands out due to its ability to perform in extreme conditions, offering unparalleled efficiency and reliability.

We started as a student project at ETH Zurich during our undergraduate studies, continuing to develop underwater robots through our master’s program. After graduation, we secured grants like the ETH Pioneer Fellowship, Bridge PoC and the InnoBooster, allowing us to gather customer feedback. With support from Wyss Zurich last year, we industrialized our product and expanded our team to over ten members.

Tell us more about your plans for 2024 and what is your long-term vision.

We are launching our first product this August, marking an exciting time for us. Since we have operated internationally from the start, our immediate and long-term goals are to help customers in the hydro and offshore energy sectors inspect their infrastructure more safely, with better data, and at lower costs. This launch represents a significant milestone, and we aim to continuously improve our technology and expand our market reach.

What has been the biggest success that you have achieved in your startup?

The support from Wyss Zurich has been crucial in transforming our prototype into a market-ready product while giving us the resources to test the market. This assistance has effectively bridged the “valley of death” for us as a deep tech startup.

If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?

I wouldn’t change a thing because everything that happened has brought us to where we are today. But, it’s also easy to say that when we haven’t had any major business disasters yet 😉 Fingers crossed! Every challenge has been a learning opportunity, and those experiences have shaped our current trajectory.

What motivates you to continue your business every day?

I’m exactly where I want to be in life right now. Seeing our robot in action with customers is incredibly rewarding, especially when it makes tough tasks look easy. Lastly, my team is the cornerstone of our success—none of this would be achievable without them. The passion and dedication within our team drive us to push the boundaries of what’s possible.

One piece of advice for someone who is just starting out with their startup?

Get out there, test, and break your prototypes as much as possible. That’s our secret to speed. Don’t shy away from testing hardware—it needs to be tested, tested, and tested again. And trust me, that’s not something you can do sitting in a lab!

What does the Swiss Startup Association offer to you as a founder?

Personally, it’s inspiring to be around other ambitious entrepreneurs. Professionally, it opens doors to resources and networks that turbocharge our growth. Plus, who doesn’t love saying they’re part of the Swiss startup scene?

Connect with Jonas on LinkedIn

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