Top eight innovative ideas line up for Bristol entrepreneurs competition

March 7, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
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A birdsong recognition system and a ‘smart’ water-meter development to encourage water saving are just two of the innovative entries submitted for the University of Bristol’s New Enterprise Competition.

The annual event, which is open to students, staff and recent graduates of the University, attracted stiff competition. There is a prize fund of £35,000 along with free professional advice and managed office space at the Bristol SETsquared Centre, to help bring the winning ideas to the market place.

Eight teams have been shortlisted to go through to the final of this year’s competition. The teams are, SunHub – providing solar power systems to rural India, Rapunzel – a new hair-care product range, Gym2 – a new strategy to encourage gym-use, Tweeter – a birdsong recognition and identification system, Puddle – a ‘smart’ water-meter development to encourage water-saving, CheapAFM – the production of affordable Atomic Force Microscopes, and EventBand – a new identification and proof-of-age system for festivals. Your Child Starts Piano – a video tutorial system for teaching the piano was the ‘wild-card’ entry put through by Basecamp, the student business incubator.

The shortlisted entries include thirteen undergraduates, one postgraduate, one post-doctoral researcher, and two staff members – drawn largely from the Engineering Faculty but also including representatives from the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, and the Faculty of Science.

Dave Jarman, Enterprise, Skills and Education Manager in RED and Chair of the competition judging panel, said: “The event is designed to draw and inspire new high-growth business ideas from the University’s entrepreneurial talent. This year’s competition was extremely fierce and the judging panel had a tough time deciding the shortlisted entries.”

The judging panel comprised representatives from the competition’s sponsors, Bristol City Council, Deloitte, EADS, IPGroup, King Sturge, Motorola, Osborne Clarke, Santander, SETsquared Business Acceleration Centre, and the Wyvern Seed Fund.

The finalists will now write up full business plans with the help of mentors from Basecamp, RED and the sponsoring organisations. The final presentations will take place on 11 May 2011 with the winners announced at the University’s Enterprise Dinner on 28 June 2011.

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Bristol appoints its first Business Fellows to build links with industry

February 16, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
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Research and Enterprise Development at the University of Bristol has announced its first Business Fellows – five research scientists at Bristol who will take the lead in supporting a culture of collaboration between academics and industry.

The first Business Fellows are:

Dr Jenny Jennings in Veterinary Pathology and Infection and Immunity, Faculty of Medical and Veterinary Sciences

Simon Mcintosh-Smith in the Department of Computer Science, Faculty of Engineering

Dr Tom Scott in the Interface Analysis Centre, Faculty of Science

Dr Bo Su in the School of Oral and Dental Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Dr David Matthews in the School of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Medical and Veterinary Sciences

Fellows are expected to commit half a day a week to the role, supporting their colleagues and stimulating business collaborations in ways that do not impact on their teaching, research and administrative work. The University has been working with London Technology Network (LTN) which has experience in helping science-based university researchers to increase their interactions with business. The new Fellowships involve intensive training and mentoring provided by LTN, who will also facilitate interactions with industry around specific projects.

Bristol Fellows will take part in training programmes and activities alongside researchers from other universities in the spring of 2011.

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