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Student start-ups shine at GradInvest 2021

Entrepreneurial students and graduates took to the virtual stage for SETsquared’s annual GradInvest showcase event on 26 May, to pitch for investment and support to take their innovative start-ups to the next level, to an online audience of 100+ investors and seasoned business experts and mentors.

The 13 early-stage ventures, all started by students or recent graduates from the SETsquared partner universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, included a dental diagnostic app, exercise tracking technology, swimwear created from recycled plastic and an affordable haptic solution which makes virtual reality simulations physically touchable.

Find out more about the ventures that took part

Kat Mack, Student Enterprise Manager, University of Surrey said: “It was great to see 13 companies from varied sectors, some at the very cutting edge of technology, whose pitches were slick and professional and showed some really well-developed early ideas. Early support can be instrumental in the success of young start-ups. By offering skills building and business modelling, pitch practice opportunities and potential funding, events like GradInvest can help founders to recognise the real value of their business sooner and enable them to move confidently in the right direction to grow and scale.”

One of the pitching companies, LabCycle, offers a service to decontaminate and recycle single-use lab plastic waste, which is then sold to recycling companies and/or manufactured into lab-grade plastic consumables to establish a circular economy within the research sector.

Engineering Doctoral Researcher at the University of Surrey and LabCycle Co-Founder Minal Patel said: “Taking part in GradInvest was an incredible and very supported experience. The process itself, the pitch practice, mentoring and training, has already accelerated the progress of our business and the live online pitching itself was a fantastic opportunity. We would highly recommend taking part in this event to other start-ups in the years to come.”

Registrations are open for SETsquared’s flagship annual investment showcase – SETsquared Invest 2021 – which will take place on 1 December for investors interested in early-stage, high tech start-ups.

Register for SETsquared Invest 2021


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SETsquared is a partnership between

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