Sylvia Smit is an experienced woman in technology and a founder who has created and delivered pioneering technology-driven models and projects including AI innovation. Sylvia believes in executing change through AI and technology innovation, providing solutions to make the world a better place.

Tell me about your career.

I was born in the Netherlands but moved to London to study Computer Science at university. After graduating, I spent over 20 years working in the financial services sector such as banking, along with vendor Fidessa. In 2014, I helped co-found Delta Capita Ltd, building it up from scratch to become a global company with over 1000 employees before it became part of Prytek Group in 2020. At Delta Capita I was responsible for capital markets delivery but pivoted from consultancy to AI products and services, with a specific focus on model explainability.

After leaving Delta Capita in 2020, I founded AITIS as a deep-tech AI innovation company to focus on areas also outside of financial services, such as healthcare, to make an impact on people’s lives. This led me to launch mymonX earlier this year – an AI-powered health and wellness wearable with a focus on healthcare prevention. mymonX is a non-invasive health and wellness device that analyses your vitals to proactively take charge of your health, underpinned by AI.

What led you to create mymonX?

AITIS’ background is deeply embedded in academic and medical research. We became interested in addressing chronic wounds using our AI expertise considering the worrying statistic that around 25% of chronic wounds are currently misdiagnosed.

Chronic wounds contribute to significant healthcare and economic burdens worldwide. In the UK alone, £6bn is spent annually on wound care. Between 2021-2023, we successfully clinically validated our chronic wound AI decision-making models at two hospitals. All we require is an image and our models will provide the diagnosis with explainability on an app, mobile phone, or integrated with medical systems. We are now deploying our cost-effective wound diagnosis AI technology solutions that we want to make accessible to all.

Our chronic wound work has led us to healthcare prevention with mymonX. Globally, 50% of the population had a chronic disease and mymonX is designed to empower people to be proactive in managing their health and staying healthy. The wearable empowers users to get full oversight of their vitals both currently and continuously right from their wrist.

Our AI-based non-invasive glucose monitoring is a first of its kind – helping people to manage their blood sugar levels, identify trends, and make positive lifestyle adjustments to their diet and physical activity. We are also doing ground-breaking work to be able to tell our users if they are unwell or will be unwell, and why. We aim to be able to tell our users what their vitals are, why they are at this level and how they can address it. Providing guidance to people on their vitals and what they can do about it is what a lot of wearables on the market are failing to do. For instance, through our recent research with YouGov, we found only half of British people (54%) understand all the metrics on wearable devices, proving the wider issue of public accessibility to health information.

This is why we created mymonX – making health monitoring accessible to all people and providing the foundations to improve their overall health. mymonX users have access to the expertise of medical professionals who review personalised monthly reports, further adding credibility to the wearable and its insights.

Why do you think it’s important that people take control of their own health?

Health is the most important thing in life, so greater visibility and control over it is always a good thing – not just for yourself but also for your loved ones and the wider community. Thankfully, technology can be an incredible force for good and has already made significant advancements in global health. Wearables such as watches are particularly effective devices because people can wear them day-to-day and get a constant overview of their health over time, allowing them to identify patterns and progress.

Having that visibility over vitals at any given moment is empowering because it gives you the tools to make meaningful changes to your diet, physical activity, and wider lifestyle behaviours. Without that, people are in the dark about their current state of health which could lead to complications further down the line.

What is your advice for other women in technology?

It is always important to have a very comprehensive understanding of technology and data science, so my advice would be to educate yourself as much as possible. Science is very accessible and can be learned by anybody if they have a genuine interest in the discipline.

The other key part is having a ‘can-do’ approach, especially with innovative areas of technology where you are working with no precedence. For this reason, keep an open mind because you will likely face challenges along the way.

Finally, make sure you have a mission and vision of where you want to be in the short and long term as this keeps you on the right course in whatever you do.

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