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Entrepreneurship Programme helps Italian company reach next stage of commercialisation

Every year more than 3 million bicycles are stolen in Europe and bicycle theft is a critical issue worldwide. This is particularly true in a world that is shifting towards a new concept of smart mobility, especially in urban areas. At the moment, cyclists rely just on chains and locks to secure their bikes and in case of theft they have no practical methods for recovering them.

Sherlock is a GPS-based antitheft device connected to a smartphone app that allows cyclists to precisely locate their bicycles and retrieve them in case of theft. Sherlock is embedded into the structure of the bicycle and is characterised by an unobtrusive design and provides a flawless user experience.

Behind Sherlock there is a passionate team with a strong background in engineering, international management and user experience design. Among the six members of the team, there are two PhD fellows of Politecnico di Torino with previous experience in start-up businesses, a key-account manager and a customer care specialist in an international manufacturing company, an intern at Intel and a project manager in a start-up company.

The idea for Sherlock was born in February 2014, after the team attended the Fondazione CRT “Talenti per l’Impresa” Programme, with the project gaining momentum in June 2014. The team are now finalising the prototyping phase.

They also attended the SETsquared Entrepreneurship Programme in September 2014, giving the opportunity to turn their business idea into an investor proposition, improving the vision and strategy. At the end of the week they were awarded with the first prize in the final competition.

The Sherlock project was selected for funding from frontierCities, an EU-funded project that supports the development and deployment of smart mobility solutions in European cities, it was one of the 27 projects selected among about 600 international candidates. The goal of frontierCities is to bring the benefits of smart mobility solutions to citizens, enhancing the urban mobility and the quality of life. This programme directly funds SMEs and Start-Ups to develop and deliver innovative solutions whose ultimate beneficiaries are European citizen and cities.

Pierluigi Freni, CEO of Sherlock, says: “This grant will allow us to go from the prototype to the product and to jump start the commercial phase. We are very proud of this achievement that will give us the possibility to accelerate the development of our product and to create two job opportunities. This represents an important step towards our final goal: defeat bicycle thieves.”

To find out more, visit the Sherlock website

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