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Graduate entrepreneurs step into the limelight and need your support

Graduate entrepreneurs step into the limelight and need your support

Image shows: The Washing Machine Project’s prototype washing machine being trialled in a refuge camp in Iraq

The long-term success of start-ups is often down to the quality of support they receive in the early days. Access to vital seed investment, contacts, networks and training is mission critical to budding entrepreneurs.

We’re therefore hugely excited by the return of GradInvest, the event which gives businesses formed by recent graduates a platform to raise investment and gain support, on 21 May.

This year, given the extraordinary circumstances that we currently find ourselves, we’ve re-engineered the event to now take place online to ensure that the businesses can still benefit from this valuable opportunity, whilst maintaining the safety of all involved.

This is the second year that we’ve run this event and the list of companies taking part, all of whom are recent graduates from the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, once again makes for good reading. Companies have to apply to take part and then we run a competitive selection process in order to select the final line-up, ensuring that the start-ups that pitch on the day are able to demonstrate both a strong and viable business model and the potential for continued growth and development.

Some of the companies are seeking investments within the range of £25k – £250k, others aren’t looking for monetary support, they’re seeking an injection of expertise, contacts, sector knowledge and training to help boost them to the next level of growth.

To give you a flavour, here is a summary of just some of the companies taking part:

  • Chisel Robotics is redefining the amputee’s experience with Smart Prosthetic Device to bridge the gap between amputee and the Clinician.
  • Kaedim uses AI to turn sketches into digital 3D models in seconds, helping designers to spend more time being creative by enabling rapid iteration in a fraction of the time.
  • The Washing Machine Project is aimed at alleviating the burden of handwashing clothes for everyone everywhere and has developed a standalone, off-grid, washing machine that is portable and affordable. This company was recently featured in The Guardian, read more about them here
  • Moveo a short film streaming platform that is free for viewers and generates feedback, translating them into reports driven by AI and sentiment analysis for filmmakers to use to support their ideas.
  • Infinite Session creates alcohol-free, great tasting craft beers, without the hangover or compromise.
  • Play Well for Life bring the fun of games to the serious business of improving mental health and wellbeing by creating innovative online and offline games to train the skills to lead happier, healthier lives.

See the full list of companies taking part

It’s been so encouraging to see the success that our first cohort of companies from last year’s event have gone on to achieve. This has included significant investment and funding raises, in particular an £850k raise for The Biofactory and a £2m raise for ChargedUp as well as places on high-profile accelerator programmes, product launches and significant media coverage.

I have no doubt that this year’s line-up of start-ups will soar to similar heights but it’s vital that they get that early support needed to set them on the path to success and that’s where you come in.

If you’re an investor, experienced mentor or seeking high-quality candidates for your accelerator programme, this event will give you access to 17 promising propositions, so make sure you don’t miss out.

Register for this event

 

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SETsquared is a partnership between

  • University of Bath
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Southampton
  • University of Surrey