Three Cambridge businesses share £40k prize

Published: 13 December 2011 at 13:24

Light Blue, Microgenius and Whey Forward Health Industries secure Anglia Ruskin funding

Three fledgling Cambridge companies have successfully bid for £40,000 from Anglia Ruskin University to help make their business dreams a reality.

Earlier this year Anglia Ruskin’s Centre for Enterprise Development and Research (CEDAR) received a £50,000 donation to provide support for business people within Cambridgeshire, leading to the Enterprise Fellowship Scheme being launched in June.

A novel advertising concept called Streetsight was the first to benefit from the scheme, receiving £10,000 in September, and a further three finalists have now been given support after successfully pitching to the judging panel.

Hamish Symington and Tom Catchesides have been awarded £12,000 to develop their innovative business management software for photographers, called Light Blue.

Hamish explained:

“Tom was working as a wedding photographer and had developed a system to run his business; enough people were impressed by it that we formed Light Blue Software to bring it to market.
“Three years on our software has reached v3, with a sizeable market both in the UK and around the world, and we’ve built a reputation for both top-notch software and excellent customer support.
“We’re constantly developing our software to add new features and bring it to a wider audience, and the CEDAR funding and mentoring will be invaluable for the plans we have in 2012, helping us to speed our product development and bring other people on board.”

Emily Mackay of Microgenius was awarded £10,000 to progress her social enterprise idea of linking investors with people keen to install a green energy microgenerator on their property or in their community.

Microgenius aims to become the online marketplace for domestic and community microgeneration projects. It will be a place where investors can pool funds to offer capital to those installing renewable energy technologies, such as wind or hydro turbines, in turn realising environmental, social and financial benefits.

Emily said:

“To have a team of established entrepreneurs supporting me at such as early stage, not only financially but with their time and expertise, is a golden opportunity.”

Joe Faulkner-Edwards has been given £18,000 to help Whey Forward Health Industries launch their first product. Taking advantage of new whey processing techniques, Whey Forward Health Industries has developed an advanced nutritional supplement which can aid the production of the antioxidant Glutathione. This has been shown to enhance immune function, promote bone-mineral density and reduce tiredness and fatigue.

Joe said:

“Entering the CEDAR Enterprise Fellowship Scheme was one of my best decisions! Obviously, this financial input will give our product launch the healthy boost it needs, but perhaps more importantly, the unrivalled level of advice and expertise offered as a result will help me grow the business to where we would like it to be.
“We intend to grow Whey Forward Health Industries Ltd into a successful and thriving enterprise and exciting developments are already underway for future products.”

Professor Lester Lloyd-Reason, Director of CEDAR, said:

“The quality of the applications was very high and it is tremendous that we have been able to help four completely different business ideas.  The funding and the other support given to each winner will give them a great opportunity to successfully progress their ideas.”

Walter Herriot OBE, who was a member of the judging panel, said:

“This was the first Enterprise Fellowship Scheme run by CEDAR and to be able to help four new enterprises with funding and mentoring support is fantastic.  I am already looking forward to the 2012 Enterprise Fellowship Scheme.”

In addition to Professor Lester Lloyd-Reason and Walter Herriot OBE, other members of the judging panel included Dr Geoffrey Butlin of TrancenData Europe Ltd and Peter Taylor of TTP.