Every summer, the most creative minds in advertising and communications gather in the French resort town of Cannes, on the Cote d’Azur, to celebrate their own brilliance at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. These are the forward-thinkers, the industry’s most prominent problem-solvers, the crisply styled “creative types” who spotted the next big thing was before it was the next big thing, and then made it so. So perhaps it’s fitting that it was there, amid lavish parties and award ceremonies held for the world’s elite trend-spotters and trend-setters, that Alex Kushleyev and Daniel Mellinger, two 27-year-old roboticists living in Philadelphia, briefly grabbed the spotlight.
Kushleyev and Mellinger weren’t in Cannes to swap business cards or brand strategy over flutes of grand cru. The duo have little interest in selling cell phones or mid-luxury sedans, or anything else for that matter. In fact, that’s what makes KMel Robotics, their young startup, so unique: though they are a leader in their field, they aren't trying to sell their technology.
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