At a lively event in July, ten tech start-up businesses concluded their three month Catalyst journey with impressive presentations to a room packed with potential investors, advisors and mentors, all keen to understand if and how they might support the new businesses in their next phase of development.
Catalyst Founder and Science Park CEO, Peter Birkett, commented: “Catalyst is a critical part of Southampton Science Park’s reason for being, that is: to nurture high growth potential science and technology businesses. In selecting businesses to join the programme we look for innovative ideas and a credible management team capable of delivering value for a defined customer segment at a profit. Although these are simple concepts, getting all these foundations right at the outset really is the key to success in the longer term.”
Members of the audience were unanimous that the principal ingredient they look for is credible business leaders that they can work effectively with.
Entrepreneur and Managing Director of Fulcral Limited, Greg Watson, said: “I’m interested in deep tech. Mad scientists aren’t a problem to me. I want to know if they have the ability to harness their innovation through people; to put a leadership team and partnerships together to work effectively.”
Matthew Burke, Head of Technology Ventures at Williams commented: “For me, it’s the whole proposition: a high value problem in a market that offers sufficient opportunity to scale and a strong, defensible solution to that problem armed with credible, motivated people at the helm.”
Michelle Mealing, Relationship Director at Barclays spoke of the breadth of the sectors represented in the session. “You couldn’t get more diverse,” she said. “Attending events like this really helps me to understand the journey that entrepreneurs have been on up until the point when they come to us for next stage help.”
Peter Birkett concluded: “All of the companies presenting today have demonstrated the considerable progress they have made during their twelve weeks on the programme. They have all refined their business models and gained improved clarity on their channels to market. It’s been an absolute pleasure to work with them.”
The Catalyst companies are:
CanSense, which has developed a simple blood-based approach for faster, cheaper and more accurate cancer screening has completed clinical trials and is primed for investment.
Quadible, which uses behavioural traits and machine learning to innovate mobile authentication processes, has a prototype on trial with a global blue chip company.
Wilderness Now, a unified marketplace for outdoor pursuits, has secured SEIS approval and is working towards building investment for an effective launch.
ManFen EdTech has made language learning fun and more effective by using gaming and artificial intelligence and is primed ready for market launch.
Fostering Guide, which hopes to hasten foster parent acquisition and improve standards of care for children across the UK, is ready to embark on a pilot project across the South.
Truckstars , the ‘uber for HGV drivers’ is now a proven concept with a clearly defined market segment, ready to activate.
Forty1 Kitesurfing which has cleverly reengineered kitesurfing with a low cost, portable hydrofoil, is working to find further mentors and advocates as part of its customer discovery process.
Nubbio, a scalable SaaS platform for more effective, unified business communications is looking for pilot customers prior to full scale launch.
FoodKim, which has combined wearable tech with high-end science to facilitate allergy screening for children in real time, is building partnerships and looking for regulatory advisors.
Brytlyt, with patent pending intellectual property for incredibly fast and powerful data analytics, has proven traction in test markets and is looking for investment to scale.
Catalyst is Southampton Science Park’s intensive programme of high-level mentoring and commercially focused peer group workshops designed to turn great ideas into businesses with real world impacts. Click here to find out more or to register your interest for the next programme.
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