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Award wins

Two Southampton Science Park companies were named winners in the inaugural South Coast Tech Awards in December.

IT Dev was awarded Tech Employer of the Year. Andy Culmer, Engineering Director, commented: “It’s fantastic to win. Being Tech Employer of the Year is very much about the whole team because our company is all about the personalities of the people who work here. As we have grown, we have put more effort into putting things in place that maintain our business culture, like setting out our company values and introducing an employee reward scheme. It’s hard to find good people and we are proud to have a lot of long servers at ITDev. If you look after your team, they will look after your customers and the business.”

Judges’ commented: “Our winner has a very strong business culture based around flexible working and wellness, with support from managers at the top of the organisation. They encourage and support staff to upskill and advocate promotion from within. The number of long servers in their ranks demonstrates strong employee loyalty. They also encourage staff to engage with directors, as well as undertake career-focused training activities. An open-plan office and family atmosphere ensures staff find it easier to support each other.”

Meanwhile Tonic Analytics won the Science and Technology Award. Here, judges highlighted: “We were impressed with this company’s growth and profitability. Its proprietary data analytics technology has applications in a wide range of industry sectors. The cloud-based technology supports automated data capture from machines, people, processes and the environments in which they operate. The company works in the airline, oil and gas, road transport, public safety and law enforcement sectors, with around 80% of its sales coming from overseas.”

COO Andy Dollin added: “Fantastic! When we looked at the other finalists, we thought we were just along for the ride. I’m tremendously proud for the whole team at Tonic. From the outset, we have designed our technology to be applicable to different industries. Using data from multiple sources enables our customers to create a ‘digital twin’ of what is happening in the real world for predictive analysis. Our objective is to make use of the latest technologies to provide very cost-effective solutions that can be rapidly deployed with high re-use applications.”

A total of eight current or previous Science Park companies were shortlisted for awards this year. In addition to the above, AudioScenic, Forty1 Kitesurfing, Ilika Technologies, Liberatii, Signly and Utonomy were highlighted across the categories.

Southampton Science Park was proud to sponsor Tech Start-Up, a category which Threat Status won. Judges noted: “This company has developed excellent cybercrime technology capable of searching billions of data sets for compromised passwords or usernames. We were impressed by their offer of a free starter version to SMEs to make combatting cybercrime more affordable. Since our winner launched in 2017 it has attracted attention from banks, insurers, the military and the UK Government.”

Hosting and presenting this award on behalf of the Science Park, Chief Executive Dr Robin Chave said: “It’s been a privilege to support the South Coast Tech Awards and be a part of the celebrations this evening. We wish all the shortlisted companies continued success and growth in the years ahead.

“Looking at the breadth of entrants, finalists and winners, there’s no doubt that the South Coast is emerging as one of the UK’s primary innovation centres. Awards such as these provide an important and timely boost for the companies concerned while also signalling the benefits of locating here to the rest of the tech community.

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