A packed event at the HQ of investment bank, BNY Mellon, showcased the talent and ideas of new entrepreneurs discovered by Cambridge Judge Business School’s Accelerate Cambridge programme
Around 100 angel investors from London and Cambridge gathered to hear pitches from new companies starting up in the fields of bio-tech, disaster analytics and data-driven risk preparedness.
The startups were all found by the Accelerate Cambridge programme, started by Cambridge Judge to find and nurture ventures at a very early stage. Unlike most programmes, Accelerate Cambridge does not require the startup to have secured any funding or backers but will work with teams who are still at the idea stage. Just 18 months in, the programme has accelerated no fewer than 31 startups, three of which have already collectively attracted over £1 million investment funding.
John Yeomans, Chairman of Cambridge Angels, said:
“This event confirmed that the Cambridge Judge Accelerate programme is converting the science and technology ideas so typical of the Cambridge scene into workable early stage businesses.”
Tim Jones, Chairman of Treatt and CEO of Allia, added:
“I was lucky enough see some seemingly very investable propositions. I was sitting with some credible investors – not only Cambridge Angels but private equity, family office and wider wealth managers were well represented in the audience. Impressive!”
And Simon Thorpe, angel investor at Delta2020, commented:
It was great to see young well-honed entrepreneurs pitching to investors. Typical of Cambridge derived businesses, data analytics, data security and life science themes were all in evidence.
The startups pitching on the day were:
Patenting innovative chemical sensing technology for industry and health diagnostics.
A software company focusing on disasters, the team help businesses assess the financial impact of disaster by providing accurate ‘how big, how bad, how long’ estimates.
This team has created software that collects and analyses a huge amount of online data to deliver real-time political risk analysis.
This cloud based decision support/farm management platform brings together public and private data to help farmers take informed decisions.
A mobile phone-based biometrics project, which allows healthcare workers to collect and check patient information in the developing world.
A Cambridge-based enterprise specialising in the upcycle and out-licensing of parked therapeutics and dormant IP in the biopharmaceutical industry.
Accelerate Cambridge Director Hanadi Jabado said it has been heartening to see London investors interested in venturing outside of the capital to find new business opportunities:
I would really like more investors to engage with startup companies outside London. There is life beyond ‘Tech City’ – it’s got a deservedly great reputation for creative media ventures but in Cambridge we are developing hard science into ventures that will have real health and societal impact and we need London to get involved. In return for London’s money we can offer a world-class University and a non-stop pipeline of creativity and innovation. We have very supportive local seed funders and successful entrepreneurs, but we really need London to get involved more in Cambridge.
Cambridge Judge also supports entrepreneurs through its MBA programme and Post-Graduate Diploma in Entrepreneurship, run by its 10-year old Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (CfEL). Cambridge Judge has also recently partnered with the UK Government’s SIF (Social Incubator Fund) project to find and nurture social ventures across the East of England.