CATALYST ROUND-UP

17 November 2017

In September we welcomed eight new early-stage businesses onto the Science Park’s Catalyst programme.

Phil Sharpe, one of the programme leaders said: “News of the Catalyst programme spread far and wide this year, resulting in an incredibly exciting cohort of businesses across a range of sectors and all at different stages of development. I personally can’t wait to get stuck in and see how far we can take their ideas!”

Over this issue and next, we will profile our 2017 Catalyst Centre tenants, with greater detail available now at catalyst-centre.co.uk.

Care Quest hopes to tackle the nationwide issue of making it faster and easier to obtain appropriate and available healthcare. Some 1.75 million hospital bed days were lost in 2016 due to delays in sourcing care packages and, for members of the public, it is often a daunting and stressful exercise to find the right provider for their needs.

Founders Natalie Dobson, Joanne Barry and Philippe Preget have created Care Quest, an online portal bringing all healthcare partners together to support patients’ care choices encompassing nursing homes, residential homes and community care provision. These providers, the NHS and members of the public are all set to benefit from this revolutionary approach.

Soton Audio Labs is a spin-out arising from research conducted into audio reproduction at the University of Southampton. Founders Marcos Simón and Filippo Fazi set out to design a replacement for conventional surround sound systems; a way to provide the same listening experience but without the need for positioning loudspeakers around the listener or wearing headphones. The result is technology which accurately reproduces 3D soundfields in the form of a loudspeaker array.

Although initial concepts had affluent, early adopting consumers in mind, the resulting technology has opened up the prospect of taking it beyond the consumer market into a whole new set of applications across commercial business-to-business markets which might include the automotive and leisure sectors.

Pulsar R&D is the brainchild of Dr Anne Roques who will be using her extensive experience in research and development in the orthopaedic industry and undertaking contract development work for orthopaedic medical devices. She was one of 15 winners of a prestigious infocus Women in Innovation Award in 2016.

Each year in the UK, over 10 million people consult their GP for musculoskeletal problems, resulting in an estimated annual cost to the UK economy of £5.7 billion. Dr Roques is working with clinicians, patients and academic partners to bring down these staggering statistics through the development of low cost methods for assessing the way people move, with the aim of avoiding musculoskeletal problems for them in later life.

Filament is an artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning consultancy, working to help companies understand and ‘bottle’ their expertise, unique data sources and intellectual property into reusable machine learning models. Its team of ex-IBM Watson AI specialists and digital agency practitioners will offer consultation, education and implementation services for clients, as well as a tooling platform to help clients build their own machine learning assets.

‘Unstructured data’ like emails, webpages and documents comprise nearly 90% of all digital information globally. While this unique data can be hugely valuable and differentiating, most businesses lack the technical skills or innovation structures to monetise it. Founders Doug Ayres and Phil Westcott, with CTO James Ravenscroft and Technical Client Services Lead Andy Feltham, hope to change this with their innovative concept.

Great business ideas can strike at any time! If you have an innovative science or technology-led idea and the drive to build a business, apply now for the Catalyst 2018-19 programme at catalyst-centre.co.uk.