We aim to foster a culture of entrepreneurship, innovation and success among engineers in the UK, creating economic growth and societal impact. At the heart of how we do this are the Hub Members, the promising entrepreneurs who we support through our programmes, and our Hub Mentors, the business leaders who volunteer their expertise and time to help the Hub Members succeed.
From manufacturing to medtech, our Hub Membership is made up of some of the UK’s most innovative entrepreneurs. But don’t just take our word for it: read more about our Hub Members to see how they are, without exaggeration, changing the world.
The space industry is evolving. We’re moving from the conventional large, costly platforms, towards global constellations of thousands of identical, downsized satellites. Once launched, these satellites use on-board propulsion to reach their operational orbit, where they begin delivering the global services we rely on daily, including the internet, Earth observation and IoT services. However, current on-board propulsion technologies require 3 to 6 months to reach their operational orbit, significantly delaying operator revenues.
OhmSpace’s breakthrough in resistojet technology delivers 10x quicker satellite set-up, with its higher thrust-to-power ratio, and 3x lower production costs than the Hall Effect Thruster (HET) technology used today in mega-constellations.
The global space economy is poised to become the next trillion-dollar industry by 2040. Of this, the global satellite manufacturing market is currently worth $12.2 billion, with satellite propulsion taking up around 10% of this market — a figure that is set to double in the next six years. This growth is driven by the implementation of large satellite constellations, and OhmSpace is ideally placed to take advantage of this emerging opportunity. Over the next 12 to 18 months, we aim to raise a first round of investment, growing the team and advancing the technology readiness level to prepare for our first in-orbit demonstration in 2023.
Organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) are used extensively in small displays on smartphones and watches for their excellent picture quality and low power consumption. There is clear demand for this excellent picture quality in larger format displays such as laptop screens and TVs, but the cost to manufacture such displays through currently used vacuum deposition (VD) techniques is very high. As such, the market for larger OLED displays currently remains restricted to premium and luxury goods.
Solution processing is an established fabrication technique that uses less energy and generates less waste than VD. The global market for OLED materials is currently expected to grow by 26% over the next three years to $2.3 billion. Within this, the market for solution-processable materials is expected to grow rapidly at more than 100% per year to reach $268 million in 2025. However, solution processing is yet to be widely adopted, as one of the main bottlenecks is the availability of suitable emitter materials.
We have developed sustainable organic emitters that are ideally suited for solution-processed OLEDs (SP-OLEDs), as they are free of the scarce, expensive heavy metals that have been an integral part of all OLED emitters to date. Furthermore, our less energy-intensive and more sustainable manufacturing method, combined with the lower cost of synthesis and our sustainable and metal-free emitters, will significantly reduce OLED fabrication costs and environmental impact while maintaining high performance.
We envisage SolOLED to be an R&D company developing material solutions for the SP-OLED market. SMEs Cynora (Germany) and Kyulux (Japan) have already successfully shown that a start-up company focused on OLED materials can be spun out from an academic lab. Based on their model, SolOLED has developed a preliminary business plan and already established relationships with a potential customer. We are currently seeking to develop the commercial side of our business and generate additional IP to increase the value of SolOLED, in order to attract seed investment.
Additive manufacturing (AM) is growing rapidly at a rate of 27.5% annually, with a market worth $26.7 billion in 2020 that is predicted to reach $51 billion by 2030. However, its use is largely limited by part-building process parameters, in-built part defects, and the inherent properties of materials used in AM. To address the in-built defects, researchers use analytical simulations to study the influence of various building parameters. This is time-consuming and requires specialist skills; and even then, output results can be inconsistent and misleading. These high cost and expertise barriers limit SMEs from taking full advantage of additive manufacturing, and maximising the design and manufacturing freedoms and capabilities that the technique can offer.
AMtwin team has developed a unique digital twin platform for metal 3D printing. Using proprietary statistical learning algorithms, AMtwin can simulate and predict heat stress, temperature, and potential defects in real-time based on accumulated process data. With the excellent fitting capability of the statistical learning algorithm, users can identify trends of a parameter set and rectify potential 3D printing problems.
AMtwin’s vision is to develop a data-driven process simulation and optimization platform for the additive manufacturing industry. We are initially targeting customers using Direct Energy Deposition (DED) and our technology is already being used by an international aircraft manufacturer to prototype large aerospace parts with DED 3D printing. Over the next 12 months, we will collaborate with selected industrial partners to develop our first digital system prototype, with the aim of demonstrating its superior process simulation and prediction ability. In the next year, AMtwin aims release its first product and establish commercial partnerships in industry.
Microbes are the biological factories at the heart of bio-manufacturing, but natural microbes are not designed to produce high-value goods efficiently in commercial industrial conditions. Substantial microbe engineering and optimization is needed for economical bio-manufacturing that is competitive with traditional manufacturing processes.
The bio-industrial market has an amazing potential to shift our industries towards sustainability and circularity. However, this microbe development work requires a substantial commitment of time, expense and labour and is a large stumbling block in bringing bio-products to market and growing the bio-economy. Evolutor’s technology will eliminate this hurdle.
Evolutor’s technology is a standalone microbe optimization platform that enhances and entirely automates the adaptive laboratory evolution of microbes. We take the inherent power of evolution and apply proprietary microbiological tools and sophisticated automation of selection regimes within our high-throughput micro-bioreactor system. Through these scientific and technological advances, Evolutor can rapidly and reliably fine-tune microbes for industrial bio-manufacturing.
Evolutor’s technology has already been proven in an academic setting using several microbial species. Throughout 2022, we look forward to demonstrating Evolutor’s advanced microbe optimization capabilities with direct industrial applicability. This will begin by seeking pilot partners and customers in the bio-manufacturing of fuels, chemicals, and plastics.
Microbial bio-manufacturing spans many sectors including fuels, food, pharmaceuticals and materials and is only set to grow as more companies and industries adopt this renewable manufacturing approach. Overall, bio-manufacturing is predicted to be worth $2.3 trillion by 2027. Evolutor has potential across the majority of this market, but will initially target a much smaller beachhead within bio-based fuels and chemical manufacturers. Here, our current proof-of-concept demonstrations indicate that we can more than double microbe performances through optimizing factors like growth rate, survivability, productivity, and feedstock utilization. With potential customers having bio-manufacturing capacities of up to 1 million litres, Evolutor’s microbes can have a substantial impact on their outputs.
Looking further into the future, our goals are to capitalize on the early traction built for Evolutor to access wider bio-industrial markets and catapult Evolutor towards rapid expansion. This will involve the development of even more sophisticated microbe optimization platforms and pioneering microbes that can convert waste streams and by-products into valuable novel goods.
We rely on research for making discoveries, solving mysteries, and curing diseases, but on this journey a huge amount of single-use plastic waste is produced. In the biomedical research sector alone, 5.5 million tonnes of single-use plastic waste is produced globally, the equivalent to the annual output of household plastic waste in the UK. The majority of this waste is sent to landfill or for incineration, but with research institutes and private companies facing increasing economic pressure and new regulations encouraging more sustainable practices in the race towards carbon neutrality, researchers have been calling for a change to the current wasteful research culture.
Our innovation lays the foundation for a circular plastic supply chain in the research sector. Our proprietary sorting system ensures the plastic is well-sorted by colour and material type before we apply a novel decontamination process to remove hazardous substances. After decontamination, our plastic will be engineered into valuable high-grade recycled plastic pellets, ready for use in the recycled plastic and manufacturing industries. By turning these high-grade decontaminated plastics into pellets which can later be manufactured into lab consumables, we will create the first recycled plastic supply chain in the research sector. As such, we will be uniquely placed to manufacture recycled lab-grade consumables in a market set to reach £49.6 billion by 2027.
In the next 12-18 months, our ambition is to launch a commercial pilot. By working with early adopters, we will optimise the workflow and logistics of our waste management service, whilst partnering with manufacturers to trial making lab consumables with our recycled plastics.
Decision-making in sport management is currently heavily reliant on human intuition and experience. This is important for player recruitment, tactical analysis, fan engagement and in fantasy sports. Using AI and advanced data analytics, Sentient Sports seeks to improve decision-making for sports teams, organisations, governing bodies, and leagues.
At Sentient Sports we use our AI expertise to drive new insights in the sports industry. We aim to optimise the decision-making processes of sportspeople, utilising data-driven technologies to help our clients improve their performances both on and off the pitch. We allow decision-makers to simulate the effect of long-term decisions, initially focusing on player recruitment in football, where we predict how a player will perform once a transfer is made.
Over the Fellowship we aim to grow the business across multiple verticals and multiple sports, with the aim of breaking into the US market where there is a strong appetite for sports analytics. The US sports analytics market was valued at $1.05bn in 2020 and is expected to reach $5.11bn by 2026.
Live audio technology manufacturers have struggled to keep up with recent technological advances, being heavily restricted by their under-powered and expensive hardware foundations. Engineers currently have no choice but to use these under-powered tools that lack the creativity of their studio-grade counterparts. With the rapid trend towards hybrid events (involving productions with both live and remote components), there is still no elegant solution to process engaging and immersive audio for such events.
By taking a software-first approach to live sound processing and combining this technology with a ruggedised commercial-off-the-shelf platform, Fourier Audio are creating the next generation of audio tools for engineers working in live environments. Not only will the platform enable engineers to reliably use studio-grade tools, live, but it will also pave the way for the creation of a new breed of hybrid immersive live sound.
In the next 12–18 months, we plan to have our first hardware product processing audio on some of the largest productions and broadcasts in the world. With the global sound reinforcement market set to be worth £6.4 billion annually by 2024, including £750 million spent on audio mixing and processing consoles, the market is ready for Fourier Audio.
Prescription glasses, sports footwear, and respirator masks are among the widely worn accessories and wearable products that require a good fit to perform with their intended function. However, inherent demographic design biases cause these products to fit poorly to certain demographics, with women and ethnic minorities twice as likely to experience poor fit in some cases. During the COVID-19 pandemic, up to 97% of healthcare professionals from ethnic minority backgrounds suffered from some form of skin damage due to poor fit of respirator masks. As a result, the performance of such products is undermined, leading to discomfort, the spread of disease and potential for injury.
PolyMetrix has developed a digital platform to rapidly and autonomously capture and process biometric data. The output from this process is a 3D biometric model with the complex topologies of an individual robustly mapped out, enabling digital fitting and design of bespoke wearables. This is the first affordable, robust, and scalable solution for personalised wearable products and will be applicable to the e-commerce, healthcare, security, and industrial markets.
PolyMetrix will remove demographic bias from the wearable industry, enabling all to be equally served by devices designed to protect the wearer or enhance performance. To reach this goal, we will finish the development and stress testing of the web system and mobile data capture application. In 12 months, PolyMetrix will be applying the business teachings from the Fellowship programme and have a fully functioning and tested system licensed to first customers.
What makes us different is the Academy’s Fellows and our wider Mentor network – an unrivalled community of the UK’s most successful industry leaders, technology experts and entrepreneurs. Find out more about our Mentors and their areas of expertise.
Formerly the UK Innovation Director for Atkins, Elspeth is the CEO and Founder of IAND, a digital platform that helps major enterprises manage multiple suppliers.
Initially graduating as a chemist, Elspeth later turned her hand to transport and urban design, demonstrating business and technical leadership on over 100 transport planning projects both nationally and around the world.
Elspeth chairs the Enterprise Hub’s Innovators Network and is a judge for the Hub’s Launchpad Competition. She is also a member of the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
In 2017, Elspeth was awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to Engineering and Enterprise.
“I believe that collaboration within our industry is the key to driving innovation faster. I am so proud to be involved with the Enterprise Hub, as a Mentor, and as Chair of the Innovators Network and to support young entrepreneurs as a Judge on Launchpad competition.
It is rare to find a place which brings together startups and established companies to exchange ideas and learn from each other. We have a shared goal which is to fast track the growth of engineering enterprises in the UK. The Enterprise Hub has helped me grow my business and it is helping young engineers build the businesses of the future.”
Paul Excell is an award-winning entrepreneur, investor and global executive leader with an impressive track record of delivering growth and transformation in startups, scale-ups, global corporates and is passionate about social mobility. He is Chief Operating Officer and Non-Executive Director at ScaleUp Group™️, providing tech scaleups with unique insights from successful entrepreneurs with over $4 billion in exits plus patient equity/debt growth funding (£2 million to £20 million). He has six tech clients in the growth portfolio, and his clients have raised £30 million to date.
In addition to this, Paul is Co-Founder and Chair of Global iLabs, Founder and CEO of Excelerate™️ and Non-Executive Director with Knowledge Gateway (University of Essex). He acts as a judge and mentor for the UK Enterprise Awards and the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Launchpad Innovation Award and SME Leaders.
Paul was previously Chief Customer Innovation Officer, Chief Operating Officer/Group Technology Officer, SVP[PS1] Global at BT, Chair/member of several business Boards (UK and Spain, Nordics, AsiaPac) and sat on BT Group Board committees on Technology, Risk and Diversity. He was an Engineering Council Board member and acted as advisor to UN Secretary General on sustainability, technology and innovation.
He started his career as an apprentice and is now a chartered engineer (CEng), Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (FIET), the Chartered Institute for IT (FBCS) and Court Liveryman, Worshipful Company of Information Technologists.
Professor Mark Arthur Tooley FREng is the immediate Past President of the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine. He was the Head of the Department of Medical Physics and Bioengineering and Director of Research and Development at the Royal United Hospitals, Bath until 2017 when he retired from full-time NHS work. Since then, he has held several part-time roles. He is a specialist scientific advisor for NHS England, a digital clinical advisor for the West of England Academic Health Science network, and a healthcare technology consultant. He is a registered Consultant Clinical Scientist, an honorary professor at the University of Bath, and a visiting professor at the University of the West of England.
Mark completed his BSc in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Bath in 1979. He was sponsored by Westinghouse Brake and Signal company for the four years of the course. He then did an MSc and PhD in Medical Physics at the University of London. His MSc thesis was developing a EEG frequency analyser for anaesthesia. For his PhD research, Mark invented (with a cardiologist) an original method for rate-independent diagnosis of cardiac rhythm for implantable devices, which was patented. He spent the rest of his career in Medical Physics and Bioengineering departments, both in hospitals and academia, working along medical colleagues. He has worked at St Bartholomew’s hospital in London, Bristol University, United Bristol healthcare NHS Trust, and the Royal United Hospital, Bath. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal College of Physicians, the Institute of Engineering and Technology, the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine, and the Institute of Physics. He is a chartered engineer and chartered scientist. Mark is on the peer-review college of EPSRC, has recently been a member of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Healthcare Technologies Strategic Advisory Team and the Royal Society Fellowship panel.
Mark has been a long-standing member of the Panel for Biomedical Engineering at the Royal Academy of Engineering (now called the healthcare policy topic group). He was recently a member of the biomedical engineering membership panel, the Policy Committee, and the working group for Systems thinking in healthcare. He has mentored on the enterprise scheme.
Mark’s research interests include innovations in medicine, physics applications in anaesthesia, simulation in medicine, physiological measurement, biological signal processing, measuring the depth of anaesthesia, blood pressure measurement and novel patient monitoring solutions.
As an entrepreneur and communications professional, Helen's mission is to help businesses do more good in the world. After nearly 15 years working in government relations and leadership communications, Helen set up her own boutique communications agency, HN Communications. A smaller and more person-centred alternative to bigger agencies, HN Communications works with large and small clients to deliver complex communications projects. Clients include Bosch, Heineken, Nissan and The Climate Group.
Helen founded her latest venture, Leaders LIVE in 2020, just as COVID-19 hit. Leaders LIVE fills a much-needed gap in the market for an independent, online platform for thought leadership and debate. Leaders LIVE brings together leaders from business, government and NGOs to debate some of the biggest challenges facing our world today, from tackling climate change to addressing diversity. After only a year Leaders LIVE has built a dedicated community, with live events hosted on LinkedIn and YouTube. Events regularly have hundreds of live attendees, with thousands more catching up on the replay.
With a mechanical engineering degree from Imperial College London and an MBA from Erasmus, Mike is a chartered engineer, a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and a Sainsbury Management Fellow.
He has led turnarounds, helped establish new businesses and delivered complex projects; challenging and coaching teams to innovate and transcend existing performance. Mike’s experience includes senior operations, project and corporate roles with Royal Dutch Shell UK, and large-scale project development and delivery roles at Alstom in locations across Europe, Asia and North America. Most recently he has been a Director at Centrica Energy, where he is responsible for one of the company’s largest operated gas businesses. He is a Non-Executive Director of Acqualithium and Vice-Chair of the Board of Hymers College.
Naomi started her career at the National Criminal Intelligence Service (now the National Crime Agency), where she spent three years looking at fraud and financial crime intelligence. It included a stint working with the FBI in Quantico, Virginia. She then moved to RBS, where she spent 10 years working in various risk roles, across both the first and second line of defence.
Most recently, Naomi has been working at LBG as a Director in the Chief Resilience and Security Office, where she led on operational resilience and cyber and information security policy. She co-founded the Operational Resilience Collaboration Group, made up of more than 40 firms working together to build resilience in the industry, and co-authored the ORCG industry standard on operational resilience. Naomi also developed the ‘Mind the Gap’ initiative across various FTSE100 companies, with senior women giving inspirational talks and providing mentorships to help encourage more women into careers in security.
Dr John C Taylor OBE FREng was born in Buxton, Derbyshire in 1936. Having spent five years living in Canada
during his childhood, he returned home towards the end of the Second World War.
He attended King William’s College on
the Isle of Man before studying Natural Sciences at the University of Cambridge.
Dr John C Taylor is one of the UK’s most successful and prolific living inventors and, over a sixty-year career, has invented, produced and sold components for numerous electrical appliances around the world.
While at his company Strix Ltd, Dr Taylor established the business as the world-leading manufacturer of kettle controls. His research was instrumental in designing the ubiquitous safety switch that turns a kettle off when it boils and prevents it from overheating, and he also designed the 360˚ cordless connectors in modern kettles.
Dr Taylor’s innovations led to the production and sale of almost two billion kettle controls - 75% of the global market. His inventions in the development of bi-metallic safety critical cut-outs for electric motors are also used in domestic appliances such as hairdryers and fan heaters. His work has also seen over four hundred patents filed, including automatic windshield wipers, electric motor protectors and cordless kettle connectors and controls, and it is a testament to these components’ visionary design that they continue to be in prolific use today.
Dr Taylor has been the recipient of many honours including, but not limited to, the following:
He is also an elected Honorary Fellow of Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge, and has been conferred Honorary Doctorates from University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) and Durham University. When he’s not inventing and innovating, Dr Taylor is a keen aviator, mountaineer, yachtmaster and philanthropist.
Dr John C Taylor is a committed philanthropist and has made a number of donations in order to ensure that young engineers in the UK have the tools they need to be competitive in a global market. In 2017, he became the main sponsor of the new Dr John C Taylor Enterprise Hub, affectionately known as the Taylor Centre, in the Royal Academy of Engineering. He also established in perpetuity a Chair Professorship of Innovation in the Engineering Department of the University of Cambridge.
Following his career in creating electrical control switches, Dr Taylor became well-known for his interest in clocks and is one of the world’s leading experts in the work of John Harrison, an early pioneer of timekeeping and sea clocks. This led him to design and help build the Corpus Chronophage, a large, time-eating clock which that stands proud on the exterior of the Taylor Library, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. Dr Taylor donated the clock, alongside a bestowment to make the Taylor Library possible, to his alma mater in order to support bright students of future generations.
Richard has significant experience in managing early stage and high-growth investor-backed businesses. He has spent the last 20 years finding, building and exiting these, investing in many.
He has a strong focus on numbers, financial models, strategic and execution planning, and risk management. He has a toolkit of methodologies to call on to help businesses grow.
He is an experienced non-executive director of both SME and PLC (AIM) companies, has a good knowledge of the funding landscape and is well networked (UK and global) with connections to most Venture Capital, PE, lawyer, accountant and High Net Worth Investor communities. He has led and advised on many fundraises, including: grant; EIS and SEIS High Net Worth Investors; Venture Capital Trust; crowdfunding; ‘follow-ons’; Series A; ‘new’ such as, revenue-based funding; and all forms of debt.
Richard is a trained mentor and coach and able to challenge and win trust at the same time. He has designed and delivered incubator and accelerator structures and programmes.
He founded and runs Realise Capital, a strategic financial and growth practice, is a chartered accountant (FCA) and previously has had roles as co-founder, CEO and corporate finance director. He has seen and had to deal with most situations that arise on a growth journey and can be hands on if the need arises. He has supported more than 75 ambitious founders to achieve exits in excess of £150 million and raise investment in excess of £25 million.
Amelia is a Senior Growth Architect at BCG Digital Ventures. She has more than five years’ experience building and scaling numerous B2B and B2C tech startups in the UK, US, Dubai and France. She has also worked with some of the world’s largest corporates to accelerate their marketing, sales and e-commerce efforts.
Her capabilities include competitive market intelligence, data-driven marketing experiments, analytics, go-to-market strategies, proposition development, digital marketing, and creating martech stacks across traditional and digital channels. Prior to BCG Digital Ventures, Amelia was a Growth Strategy Consultant at Manifesto Growth and Head of Brand and Partnerships at TRIBE.