Apr 2013 13

As the deadline for the CUE 5K Challenge draws closer, here are some helpful documents to guide you along with your business plan writing. Remember to submit a softcopy of your business plans to 5ksubmission@cue.org.uk by 2359 on the 28th of April! Good luck!

What judges look for - Bradley Hardiman

General legal issues - Mills and Reeve, Legal issues Starter Pack. For participants that have any legal queries, feel free to direct them to cue@mills-reeve.com.

Funding and finance - Ensors Accounting

Mar 2013 14

We have now reached the final stage of the 2012-2013 CUE Business Creation Competition!

This is the one and only opportunity you will get in the University to develop a full business plan, have it judged by experienced entrepreneurs and investors, and have the chance of winning over £5,000 in cash! Regardless of your level of entrepreneurial experience, this is the best opportunity in Cambridge to turn your business ideas into reality.

Reminder: You do NOT need to have participated in previous stages of the competition to enter the 5K Challenge. As long as one member of your team is a current member of the University or an alumnus graduated not more than 18 months ago, you are eligible to participate.

Here are some simple steps to help make the submission and judging process clearer:


1. Read the Competition Handbook. This was updated in March 2013, so do read it again even if you participated in the earlier stages of the competition.

2. For those who wish to request for a mentor, send your request and a 100 word summary of your business idea to Pavel, our VP (Competition), at pavel.abdulkin (at) cue (dot) org (dot) uk. Mentors will be able to provide their thoughts on your plans and give some suggestions for improvement. They will not help you write your plans.

3. Write a great business plan. Include short bios for each team member (will not count to the word limit) to facilitate the judging.

4. Fill out the 5K Competition Entry Form and attach it to your business plan. Send a soft copy to 5ksubmission@cue.org.uk by 28th April 2013.

5. Mail a hard copy of your the Entry Form, your business plan, the Competition Disclaimer and NDA (found on Page 18-20 of Competition Handbook) to us. Use UMS if you are in Cambridge to send it for free. Entry fee should be sent as a cheque if possible. These must be sent by 29th April 2013.


1. Judges will read all plans and score them based on the judging criteria laid out in the Competition Handbook.

2. Top teams from each of the 3 streams will be selected as Finalists. Finalists will be notified by 22nd May 2013.

3. Finalists will have to attend the judging meeting for their respective streams, where they will pitch their ideas to the judging panel and get the opportunity to clarify any questions the judges may have.

The Technology stream meeting will be held on the 28th of May, Social Enterprise on the 29th of May and Software on the 30th of May. These meetings will take place from 9 to 11am.

4. Judges will deliberate and decide on the winning teams.

5. Winners will be announced at the Grand Finale on 14th June 2013. Prizes include £5K prizes for the best Technology, Software and Social Enterprise start-ups, £7.5K for the best Life Science start-up and £2.5K for the Entrepreneur of the Year. Teams will also get the chance to pitch to a panel of Angel Investors for a chance at winning a Special Angel Prize!

Good Luck! We look forward to receiving your entries!

Feb 2013 04

Here are the judges who will be evaluating the entries in the CUE 1K Challenge 2013:

Technology Stream

Peter Dummett - Founder, IPCAM

Bob Pettigrew - Co-founder, Generics (Now Sagentia); Cambridge Angel

Peter Morgan - Managing Consultant, PA Consulting Group

Darrin Disley - CEO, Horizon Discovery

Mike Arnott - Investment Manager (Physical Sciences), Cambridge Enterprise

Bradley Hardiman - Investment Manager (Life Sciences), Cambridge Enterprise

Software/IT Stream

Marine Barbaroux - Joint Head, Fledgling Market Division, Red Gate Software

Pieter Knook - RAEng Visiting Professor of Innovation, University of Cambridge

Jack Lang - Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Judge Business School; Co-founder, Artimi; Cambridge Angel

Anne Dobree - Head of Seed Funds, Cambridge Enterprise

Adam Twiss - Founder and CTO, SwiftServe

Social Enterprise Stream

David Gill - Managing Director, St John’s Innovation Centre

Peter Morgan - Managing Consultant, PA Consulting Group

Anne Radl - Projects Manager, The Humanitarian Centre

Charles Lang - Serial Entrepreneur

Peter Harris - Co-founder, Hotel Chocolat

Martin Clark - Deputy CEO, Allia and Future Business

Jan 2013 13

With the submission deadline for the CUE 1K Challenge drawing closer, we would like to highlight some resources that may be useful to participants when writing their executive summaries.

Videos and slides for previous 1K training events can be found here and here.

A sample executive summary can be found here.


Additionally, we have received several emails about the issues below, so please note:

  • Posters will only be required at the 1K awards ceremony on the 20th of February
  • Registration fees can be sent via cheques addressed to ‘Cambridge University Entrepreneurs’. If payment by cheque is not possible, please contact zachary.chen@cue.org.uk to make alternative arrangements.


Thank you!

Dec 2012 04

CUE will be awarding up to 10 £1000 prizes as part of our 1K Challenge, where a 1,500 word executive summary could win you £1000! Apart from the attractive prizes, enter to benefit from our mentoring scheme and to receive feedback about your business ideas from our judging panel, made up of experienced entrepreneurs and investors.

*The 1K Challenge is open to everyone. You do not need to have participated in or won the 100 word Challenge to participate.*

Follow these 5 simple steps to enter the competition:

1) Download and read the Competition Handbook

2) Fill out the mentor application form as soon as possible for us to match you up with an appropriate mentor

3) Draft your executive summary

4) Email the final copy of the executive summary (including profiles of team members) to 1ksubmission@cue.org.uk by 20th January 2013

5) Fill out the cover page and the NDA (found in the Competition Handbook), post them, a hard copy of the executive summary and the £10 registration fee to us before the 20th of January.

(Registration fees are waived for all 100 Word winners and i-Team participants)



  • Hard copies, NDAs and registration fee will be accepted as long as they are posted by 20 Jan. They do not have to be received by 20 Jan as stated in the Competition Handbook
  • Posters will only be required at the 1K awards ceremony on the 20th of Feb
  • Registration fees can be sent via cheques addressed to ‘Cambridge University Entrepreneurs’. If payment by cheque is not possible, please contact zachary.chen@cue.org.uk to make alternative arrangements


Thank you and best of luck!

Nov 2012 29

Mentor registration for the 1K Challenge is now CLOSED! Best of luck to all 1K participants!

Nov 2012 17

Congratulations to all the £100 pounds for 100 Words winners!

If you’re one of the winners, we should have already contacted you for your details so we can send you the prize. If you haven’t heard from us yet, please email info@cue.org.uk

If your idea wasn’t one of the winners, don’t worry: you can still participate in the £1K and £5K competitions. We look forward to receiving all your executive summaries and business plans throughout the rest of the competition and to seeing you at our upcoming events!


Here are the winners and their ideas:

1) Stephen Co, Darryl Gibbings-Isaac

The Phillipines is currently a net importer. Whilst coconut oil is a primary export, the Philippine mango industry is the 9th largest in the world and the country\’s mango processing plant throws away circa 150 tons of mango seed per year. We have developed a patent pending method of extracting mango oil from discarded and underutilized seed kernels using coconut oil as a base solvent; the result being a 100% natural mango-coconut oil hybrid.  Mango-coconut oil is a highly versatile commercial substance which can be used in various aromatherapy applications, and due to our method of extraction, has nutraceutical potential.


2) Bernd Kuhlenschmidt

MobileStudent – Students are under a lot of pressure and want to use their time efficiently. So, why not use waiting times, bus rides, etc. to revise some of the material for your courses. We develop an easy-to-use mobile app allowing students to study from anywhere. The software includes flashcards (for vocabulary and definition training), a document management system and more. Also, it will be easy to exchange learning material with friends.


3) Xin Yang

The fast-growing biopharmaceutical industry spends more than half of its total production cost on downstream purification processes. Current technologies are disappointing due to their low resolution, long processing time and very high cost. A new patented technology, porous micro-capillary film (MCF), provides 10,000 times higher capacity than non-porous matrices, better mechanical strength, very high flow velocity and extremely low cost than existing technologies such as beads and membrane. Moreover, MCF is biodegradable and easy to handle without packing requirement. We propose to explore the markets for this exciting technology (e.g. purification in biopharmacy or non-biopharmacy, dialysis and water/air filtration).


4) Michele Mattioni

Choosing food is usually constrained by time, availability, money and quality. Supermarkets have the upper hand on time, availability and money. However, local producers food is better quality and this is attracting more and more customers, with the market (QFM) estimated at 5B£ and increasing. The SustainableSouk aims to map all the local producers, to create a virtual market based on locations with real-time products availability, where customers can shop online from any close local producers, and collect the products either from a micro-hub, or get them delivered at home.


5) Christopher Warick

Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) have been described as a disruptive technology changing dramatically the form of established technological solutions, such as variable-antennae and accelerometers. The worldwide market for MEMS currently stands at 15bn and is increasing at CAGR of 16%. Micro-machined silicon surfaces can easily stick together through capillary forces, chemical bonding and other interactions and poses a significant limit to component size, production cost and lifetime. We have developed a novel hydrodynamic lubricant that makes MEMS machines run 100,000 longer. We aim to sell/licence our application know-how to the leading MEMS manufacturers creating value through longer component lifetimes.


6) Alap Chavda

Global sales in hair-loss prevention products rose by 40% in last 4 years to £0.5 billion in 2011. Our patentable SME has (a) specific mode of action, (b) less side effects, and (d) cheaper than current drugs. The SME will be patented in Japan (55%, market share), US (15%) and UK (1%). Our core-expertise will be in the SME production at the Babraham incubator. Marketing & selling will be licensed to Unilever, allowing the latter to expand into pharmaceutical market. Profit forecast in first 4 years is £24m and our exit will be via acquisition.


7) Sam Massey

Motorsport is dangerous, none more so than motorcycle racing. In car racing, safety has greatly increased, deaths and serious injury are now thankfully rare. However, riders are still very much at risk. I have developed a device which restrains head movement and therefore injury during a crash effectively, repeatably and safely. The production of a prototype demonstrated feasibility, and I have now secured a meeting with the largest motorcycle clothing manufacturer in the UK. Research shows a huge potential userbase, with the additional benefit of a road market not present with car-based products, plus alternative markets such as snowsports.


8 ) Boaz Sobrado and Daniel Forde

A popular type of holiday for the 3.29m UK students is the European music festival, yet festivals still rely on word-of-mouth advertising in the UK because of high marketing costs. In other countries local companies (e.g. MEXX and Ostfest) offer student-tailored packages (travel, festival tickets, collective camping and exclusive extra events) and run the festival\’s national marketing and sales. This reduces the cost for the students, increases attendance for festivals abroad and could potentially transform the UK festival market. Being students ourselves our advantages are: understanding our clients, offering better prices and, primarily, marketing and selling more effectively.


9) Sarah Bennett, Julia Frede, Francisco Hernandez Heras, Martin McBrien, Igor Romanov, Hannah Williams, Bella (Yuting) Wu

FlexiLens is a novel low cost polymer-liquid lens that will revolutionise optical systems by delivering zoom and focusing power within a single lens.  It is perfectly suited to drive the miniaturisation of optical systems with the potential to transform the consumer electronics market.  The lens is chemically and biologically inert and mechanically robust therefore it can lead markets for lens products in demanding environments, accessing a wide range of applications from battlefield optics to medical endoscopes.  FlexiLens is an exciting business opportunity as its high quality technological and physical capabilities are delivered by an inexpensive and adaptable patented manufacturing process.


10) Roger Coulston

Microencapsulation is currently a multi-billion ($USD) a year industry with established applications in food, cosmetics, drug delivery, diagnostics, and electronic displays. The current unmet consumer demand is to produce inexpensive capsules that allow for the triggered release of a cargo. This is a critical industry challenge over the next decades. AQDOT has developed an economically viable method to produce capsules with the unprecedented ability to actively and passively release fragrances, enzymes, cells, and other high value materials. We are currently building a prototype for the consumer products industry that will act as a demonstrator for the many other possible applications.


11) Timothy Lindsay, Alexander Fleming

From 1994 to 2010, British hospitals witnessed a 700% rise in children admitted for anaphylaxis. In 2011, 20% of Brits reported some kind of food allergy. Our product empowers these patients through a personalised, rapid detection mobile device enabling avoidance of allergens. Whether allergy is a matter of life and death or daily inconvenience, this product improves quality of life for allergy sufferers and safeguards the service industry.  Gone is the ambiguity of a label or the guesswork of a waiter.  In its place: a simple swipe and scan system that is as liberating as it is easy to use.


12) Ashknaz Oraee

Reduction of capital cost is vital in the growth of the wind industry, especially offshore, and to realise EU’s targets for 2020. Windrive has developed a patented lightweight drivetrain for wind turbines, comprising an integrated medium-speed permanent-magnet generator and a 2-stage gearbox, which enables 20% reduced capital cost for offshore installations. A 50kW prototype has been successfully tested and a 2.5MW machine is being developed. The offshore wind market will grow rapidly in the next 10 years, reaching 80,000MW in 2020. We expect to take a 10% market share by 2020 and generate revenues of £18M, assuming 2.5% licensing income.


13) Maria Maldonado

Identifying the best-quality oocyte is crucial for successful human and veterinary fertilisation procedures, yet robust techniques to achieve this are lacking. Our researchers have patented a comprehensive panel of molecular markers that non-invasively monitor oocyte maturation at different developmental stages, allowing for selection and confirmation of the most viable oocyte and thus dramatically increasing fertility. Our diagnostic can be marketed both for clinical and research settings, and we are expanding from equine molecular markers to homologues in other important livestock, and humans. Our diagnostic promises big economic and societal impact in a world with ageing population and decreasing animal fertility.


14) Peter Fisher and Michal Cabadaj

“Enterprice” is a specialised Internet platform connecting promising early-stage start-ups to VCs worldwide. Start-ups seeking venture capital create free customisable profiles and VCs pay a subscription fee for access to the resulting network, which they can browse through various filters including ‘funds seeking’, ‘business sector’, ‘country’ and ‘development stage’. Initial invitees to join the network will be early stage spin-outs from prestigious universities. This platform will help raise the visibility of start-ups whilst allowing VCs access to a broad network of investment opportunities they can filter and pursue at will, rather than leafing through thousands of unsolicited business plans.


15) Smita Kumar

The inaccessibility of regular health checks for the general population is a major cause of downstream healthcare issues and associated re-imbursement costs by insurers and taxpayers. MedBooth is a self-contained unit that allows individuals to independently evaluate their health at their own convenience. MedBooth users can assess current health and future health risks by inputting key health indicators and taking blood pressure, body mass index, cholesterol, diabetes, lung capacity and other measurements. Easy to understand reports (at a cost 1/20th of that of the annual health check-up) advise individuals of their current risks and recommend them to a GP accordingly.


16) Bethan Evans

Bio-barcode makes personalised medicine a reality and increases time-to-market of New Biological Compounds (NBC). Bio-barcode is a high-volume analytical platform technology for sequencing DNA/proteins/antibodies in commercial laboratories. Patented microparticle emit a magnetically sequenced barcode-like field unique to the protein to which it is bound. The codes are read by microfluidic high-speed scanning heads much like an old VCR. Bio-barcode microparticles have unlimited specificity to any analyte allowing million-plexing, accelerating new-drug development. Bio-barcode will position itself in the $600billion pharmaceutical R&D tools market, seeking partnerships and investment from the top 10 novel drug manufacturers.


17) Marius Somveille

Population growth and increasing demand for clean water result in higher price and stronger pressure on ecosystems. Indeed, cleaning water is a major ecosystem service but ecosystems cannot match our consumption rate anymore. Inspired by green walls art, I propose to commercialise ‘vertical gardens’ (fixed on buildings) capable of collecting rainwater and cleaning it with filtering plants. Clean water can then be used for domestic tasks (showers, dishwashing, laundry, toilets, and potentially for drinking). This is an aesthetic and sustainable solution, which is also advantageous in terms of economy (reduce water bill and heating bill – great insulator) and image.


18) Allen Lin

Like waiting at the doctor’s office? No one does. IntelliScheduler for Doctors is a smart, cloud-based scheduler that reduces patients’ wait-times and dynamically updates appointments in real-time. Using proprietary machine learning algorithms, IntelliScheduler statistically learns doctors’ behaviors and patients’ arrival habits to predict when patients will actually be seen. It gracefully handles service-time variations, delays, and emergencies to minimize patients’ frustration and doctors’ unbilled time. It also allows patients to leave waiting rooms by text-messaging estimated wait-times. By increasing customer satisfaction and likelihood-of-return, IntelliScheduler raises doctors’ revenues. IntelliScheduler can provide customizable, easy-to-setup, privacy-compliant software for over 250,000 US/UK physician offices.


19) Nadia M Jesus

To overcome poor healthcare infrastructure in low-income countries, UMAN Diagnostics will launch HemoTest, a cheap and disposable immunoassay test strip for rapid SCD diagnosis. SCD affects millions of people worldwide and it’s the most common genetic disorder in Africa, where up to 80% of the 400 000 children born with the disease per year die before 5. However, if cases are diagnosed and treated, then survival rates improve significantly. This new frugal technology will enable point-of-care testing of patients in limited access settings to allow best treatment decisions. The model envisioned to develop HemoTest is an industrial partnership.


20) Antoine Amann

Echobox lets bloggers publish and monetize their blogposts on smartphones. More and more people are using smartphones to read their news and blogs. To counter this trend, news outlets have created beautiful mobile apps. Bloggers, on the other hand, do not have the financial means to create great mobile experiences for their readers. Echobox solves this problem. We publish a blogger’s blogposts on our mobile app and forward our ad revenues back to the blogger (after taking a cut). Echobox will only take two minutes for bloggers to set up and will be free for their readers to download.



Nov 2012 09

Have a great idea but lack a complete team? Have entrepreneurial aspirations but no ideas? CUE’s Co-founder Speed Dating on November 14th is the solution for you!

With an exciting and fast paced format, participants will get 2 minutes each to share their ideas and expertise with one another before rotating to form new pairs.

Opportunities are also available for participants to share an elevator pitch of their ideas to the entire crowd! Please email info@cue.org.uk if you are interested!

The most promising business ideas coming out of Cambridge this year will also be revealed during the announcement of the winners of the £100 for 100 Words competition! So come on down to share ideas and meet like-minded people over pizza and drinks.

Register at cuespeeddating2012.eventbrite.com

Oct 2012 09

The submission period for the 100 word competition has now closed!

Winners will be announced at the Co-founder speed dating event on 14 November, watch this space for more details!

Best of luck to all the entrants!

Mar 2012 12

Thank you to all those who took part in CUE’s £5K training! We hope that the session gave you a better understanding of the different aspects of a business plan and we wish that you can translate this knowledge into winning entries in our 5K Challenge.

If you would like to refresh yourself on the various talks, you can download the audio recordings and slides from the links below.


Talk 1: What a judge expects to see in the £5K competition.

Talk 2: Conducting effective market research.

Talk 3: Dealing with general legal issues.


Talk 1: What a judge expects to see in the £5K competition

Talk 2: Conducting effective market research

Talk 3: Financing your business

Talk 4: Dealing with general legal issues

Talk 5: Intellectual property

Mar 2012 08

You can now register to enter the CUE £5k Competition by following in the steps in the registration form:

CUE £5k Competition Registration Form

Please make sure you complete all tasks outlined in the form above to ensure a valid entry!

The deadline is 5pm, Friday, 27th April 2012. All forms (electronic and hard-copy) must be RECEIVED by the deadline.


Mar 2012 08

Follow the easy steps below to find a mentor for your team.
Step 1: Decide that you will enter the CUE £5K competition.
Step 2: Write a short summary of your business idea (around 100 words)
Step 3: Decide what kind of expertise in a mentor that you are looking for (Market research, Finance, Legal Issues, IP or others)
Step 4: Send your short summary with the requested mentor specialty to competitiondirectors@cue.org.uk
Step 5: CUE will pair you up with a mentor whose specialty matches your requests.
Step 6: Write to the mentor and arrange a convenient time and venue for your meeting.

Feb 2012 23










By Nicholas Tan

Over 150 people gathered at the Wolfson lecture theatre last night to listen to business ideas of some of the brightest young minds Cambridge has to offer at Cambridge University Entrepreneurs’ (CUE) £1k awards ceremony.

Last night’s event marked the close of CUE’s £1k business plan sub-competition, which required entrants to submit executive summaries of their business ideas in not more than 1500 words. This year’s competition received an unprecedented number of entries, which more than doubled the number from last year. Despite the large increase in quantity, David Gill, Managing Director of St John’s Innovation Centre and one of the competition judges, was quick to point out that the quality of the submissions remained impressive.

The event was kicked off with a keynote speech from Prof Ian White, master of Jesus College, who highlighted CUE’s business plan competition as a key part of the University’s efforts to support entrepreneurship at various levels, be it spin-outs, spawn-outs or snuck-outs.

Ready, get set, pitch! The exciting and fast-paced pitching segment allowed participants up to 75 seconds to share their business ideas, which ranged from designer genetic solutions to a device that allows for advertising on bicycle wheels. Participants used a variety of techniques to capture the attention of the audience during their 75 seconds of fame, including the use of videos, props and even a live demonstration of their technology.

As the pitching session drew to a close, we reached the climax of the night, where the £1k award winners were announced. This year saw an unprecedented number of prizes being handed out, with 7 winners, 8 runner-ups, as well as prizes for the best pitch and best poster. In total, over £7000 in cash and over £11000 worth of patent database subscriptions were handed out to our winners.

The award winners of this year’s £1k business plan competition are:

£1k prize winners: Cambridge Biocompatibility, CamPores, RealiaWind, Old Bond, Wedu, Green Tutor, Cambridge Interactive Video Solutions

£1k runner ups: Cambridge Stem cell Systems, Heliomobil, TPS Limited, Shuruat Mobility, Simple Tax Calculator, Collide, Hopskip, VocallQ

Best pitch: Cedric Deur representing StuStu

Best poster: Self-Cervix

As the participants look towards the upcoming £5k business plan competition and beyond, John Bird, founder of The Big Issue, encouraged them to pay greater attention to their presentation skills and to show greater enthusiasm and clarity when pitching their ideas, which will be important when seeking investor funding for their businesses.

Also, Dr Andy Richards, founding member of the Cambridge Angels and serial entrepreneur, urged participants to think about whether they just want to win the business plan competition or to actually start a business. If they seek the latter, he cautioned that a considerable amount of effort is required to implement a business plan and bring it to fruition.

We hope to see more brilliant and exciting entries in our £5k competition, which opens on the 7th of March.

CUE would like to thank our generous sponsors for their support, without which this event would have never been possible.

Gold sponsors: Horizon Discovery, EPSRC, Carpe Diem, ARM

Silver sponsor: Redgate

Bronze sponsors: Cambridge Science Park, Ensors

We would also like to thank CambridgeIP for sponsoring the patent database subscriptions.

Feb 2012 22

The winners of the Cambridge University Entrepreneur’s £1K challenge are (in no particular order):

Cambridge Biocompatibility

Cambridge Biocompatibility is developing new bio-compatible coatings for all forms of orthopedic and prosthetic surgery that will increase the lifetime by at least a factor of five and reduce recovery and aftercare costs by a factor of 10. Total product lifetime savings will be the major pricing driver for this new portfolio of biocompatible coatings. We are requesting £100,000 venture capital and expect a company valuation of £60million within 5 years.


Ultracapacitors and pharmaceutical filters underlie very different industries, but are the most promising applications of our technology – a method to produce a novel nanoporous material. The manufacturing process is cheap, quick and easily scalable and the pore size can be reliably tuned from 5-100nm with a high degree of uniformity across the substrate. In polymeric form, the substrate has already attracted interest from leading filtration companies. As a porous metal-oxide, it will be a key component of hybrid ultracapacitors, a fast growing industry with applications in grid management and hybrid cars.  Other applications include fuel cells and enhanced Lithium-ion batteries.


Reliability is vital in the growth of the wind industry, especially offshore, and to realise EU’s targets for 2020. ReliaWind has developed a novel and patent-pending condition-monitoring system for wind turbine drivetrains, enabling 40% reduced maintenance cost for offshore installations. The product, comprising a number of sensors and the analysis hardware/software, offers straightforward retrofit into new wind tur-bines as well as existing ones. This is a relatively new market and we expect to take a 5.5% market share by 2017, equivalent to installation onto 2500 turbines per year, generating revenues of £60 million.

Old Bond

We are a start-up offering the world’s first spinning animated ads on bicycle wheels; a real breakthrough in outdoor advertising. Being environmentally friendly, we will use an innovative system, Video Pro, to transfer video-clips, images and animated logos from a computer onto the bike wheels. With such new technology transforming a bike into a work of art, drivers can run an ad on any path or put it at some popular spot around the city. It would be hard to create better advertising for businesses, concerts, festivals or cultural events than eye-catching ads on running or stationary bikes.


Local leadership is critical for local development. Wedu provides education financing options and mentorship for underprivileged university students with high leadership potential in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), especially girls. We seek to initiate a positive cycle of building and developing local leadership talent by identifying students committed to working on local issues, helping them to complete university and giving them access to a global network of mentors. When students return to serve their communities, they become mentors to other future leaders while repaying the financing received into a revolving fund to serve more students.

Green Tutor

GreenTUTOR provides a platform for online training. We focus on the sustainable built environment. Market research indicates rapid growth of the £9bn global e-learning market of which our target segment –e-learning teaching– showed the highest growth. GreenTUTOR has access to over 350 researchers and professionals in the area of sustainable development through an established network (www.greenbridge.org.uk), which will be our starting point to enter this market. Thanks to easy access to Ivy League Tutors, we benefit from low barriers to entry. Our proposed tuition service, flexible, virtual, one-to-one and multilingual, enables global outreach and thus high-growth rates for this venture.

Cambridge Interactive Video Solutions

Video data is increasingly used for research, performance analysis and documenting personal events. More than 48 hours of video are uploaded on YouTube every minute. Cambridge Interactive Video Solutions uses interactive video segmentation technology developed at the CUED to provide tools for cutting out objects in videos with arbitrary backgrounds, and analysing their properties. Revolutionary machine learning algorithms progressively understand the need of the user from only a few mouse strokes. Cut-outs are used for scientic studies: animal behavioural studies, live cell image sequence analysis, performance analysis of sportsmen: pose, motion patterns, general public video editing applications: object removal, enhancement, annotation.

The runners-up of the Cambridge University Entrepreneur’s £1K challenge are (in no particular order):

Cambridge Stem cell Systems

Cambridge Stem Cell Systems will become the major supplier of custom-made human brain neural stem cells and functional neural tissues to academia, biotech and pharmaceutical industries. We will provide solutions to establish patient cell-based systems for brain disease modeling and drug screening by 1) generating a collection of patient-derived neural stem cell lines from common neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer and Parkinson’s diseases, and produce stem cell lines of rare diseases on demand; 2) producing optimized neural stem cell culture reagents and tools to suit the research; 3) providing consulting services to help design patient cell based drug discovery platforms.


Heliomobil makes affordable solar-tracking heliostats that are designed with the goal of increasing the yield of residential and small-scale commercial solar energy collection systems. Heliomobil’s core product supplements marketed solar collection technologies, enabling them to significantly accelerate return-on-investment through increased sunlight availability.

TPS Limited

With the development of more advance tablet coatings, there is an urgent need for stricter control over tablet coating thickness and evenness which can only be achieved with better analytical equipment. Terahertz-based imaging devices have recently been developed for studying pharmaceutical tablet coatings. These devices enable continuous, on-line monitoring of tablet coating thickness during the coating process, and can be fitted to existing manufacturing equipment without modifications. These benefits make them superior to currently utilized methods. As such, these devices will be able to rapidly penetrate the US$2.2 billion pharmaceutical analytical equipment market.

Shuruat Mobility

Launched in 2011, Shuruat is working in the field of product, service and delivery model design and innovation to target large, under-served segments at the bottom of the pyramid. Our first initiative, Shuruat Mobility, is focused on the design, development and marketing of an ecosystem of innovative assistive mobility devices, specialised educational programmes and micro-financing services for the physically disabled across rural India, Africa and the Middle-East, with the objective of delivering income generation opportunities and financial independence to them in a sustainable and scalable manner.

Simple Tax Calculator

Running a small business is difficult, and keeping records of sales and expenses over multiple years is time consuming. Business owners want to spent as much time as possible on their business and as little as possible on record keeping.
The Simple Tax Calculator is a convenient, easy to use tax calculation system that allows sole traders to keep a running total of their tax liability throughout the year.
This solution will revolutionise the way small businesses manage their records, keeping all the required information in one place, and allowing you to plan your tax liability year round.


Winners of the Silicon Valley comes to the UK Cambridge Appathon, Collide creates new ways for friends to meet and interact by bringing Mobile, Local and Social together. Collide is a mobile application which tells you when your friends are close and suggests nearby places to hang out and grab a coffee, and as an added sweetener Collide also provides the user with money off vouchers for their favourite social spots.


HopSkip connects people when people want to be connected. HopSkip revolutionises how and when people are able to use their mobile phones. It does this by tunnelling connections through the latent mobile phone network on unused and available radio frequency bands. HopSkip utilises software embedded within the mobile phone to search, identify and connect to other roaming mobile phones until a connection with a network provider is achieved. As long as other mobile phones are in the vicinity and are HopSkip enabled, a connection through the latent mobile network to the real network will be established. This technology extends the coverage of existing networks substantially, allowing phone signals to be transmitted down into the London Underground, into concrete buildings and down alleyways. It also extends the boundaries of existing cell-sites considerably. Digital information literally hops and skips through other users mobile phones.

VocalIQ will become the leading provider of voice interfaces for computer systems. By using novel statistical models of dialogue, VocalIQ can dramatically improve the performance of voice-based systems. Possible applications include automated call centres, mobile applications and car-navigation systems.

Well done everybody! Look forward to receiving your entries in the £5K competition.

Jan 2012 20

Due to a large number of requests for more time to finish the executive summary, We are postponing the 1K competition deadline to 5pm, 23rd of January, 2012. If you have not yet submitted your entry, grab this chance to win £1000.

Follow the steps in the registration form: CUE £1k Competition Registration Form

Please make sure you complete all tasks outlined in the form above to ensure a valid entry!

All forms (electronic and hard-copy) must be RECEIVED by the deadline.

The winners will be announced in the CUE £1k Award Ceremony on Wednesday, 22nd February 2012. Teams will be presenting posters of their business proposals and it is also your opportunity to be matched with a CUE mentor! Sign up now!

Jan 2012 10

The wait is over!

You can now register to enter the CUE £1k Competition by following in the steps in the registration form:

CUE £1k Competition Registration Form

Please make sure you complete all tasks outlined in the form above to ensure a valid entry!

The deadline is 5pm, Friday, 20th January 2012. All forms (electronic and hard-copy) must be RECEIVED by the deadline.

The winners will be announced in the CUE £1k Award Ceremony on Wednesday, 22nd February 2012. Winning teams will be presenting posters of their business proposals and it is also your opportunity to be matched with a CUE mentor! Sign up now!

Dec 2011 08

What more can you do before submitting your executive summary?

Come join us for a free training!

Proudly presented by CUE:

The Entrepreneurs’ £1K Competition

Second Training Event

Date and Time: 14:00-17:00 Monday, 16 January, 2011

Location: Lecture Room 4 (LR4), Department of Engineering

Register at: http://cue1ktraining2011.eventbrite.com/

Dr. Darrin Disley, one of our competition judges is dedicating half a day to help you make your executive summary better before the competition closes on 20th January. Don’t miss your chance to increase your odds of winning the 1K competition!

Dr Darrin Disley is CEO of Horizon Discovery Ltd, the fast growing Cambridge-based company that provides research tools to support the development of personalized cancer medicines. A Cambridge alumni with a PhD in Biotechnology, Darrin is now an experienced and successful parallel entrepreneur who has been involved in the start-up and growth of ten high-tech business ventures.

The £1k Competition – What’s the market?

SubmissionDeadline: 20thJanuary, 2012 11:59pm

Winners Announced at the £1k Awards Ceremony:22February,2012

Our second competition is about you developing your business opportunity and writing an executive summary of no more than 1500 words. The £1k prizes are awarded to well‐presented propositions that show clear market potential and competitive advantages.You will need to clearly identify and quantify your market niche.Upto 10 cash prizes of £1k each will be awarded and winners and runners-up get free entry to £5k Competition.

Details of the submission can be found on https://www.cue.org.uk/2011/11/23/cue-1k-competition-registration/.

Nov 2011 24

Thanks for all who made the £1k Training Event last night!

The video of the judges’ talk is available for viewing now with the slides downloadable here.

Part I

Part II

Nov 2011 16

This year we are giving a way 5 additional prizes of £100!

Are you one of the lucky 25? If not, don’t fret. Join the £1k Competition opening on 23rd November 2011 to win £1000 prizes!

(Winners are in alphabetical order based on the idea name.)


Oct 2011 13

Submission deadline extended for 24 hours!

You have until 23:59 of 26th October 2011 to submit your entry here.

Submit multiple entries to increase your chance of winning!

Want some inspirations? Check out last year’s winning entries.

£5K Challenge Submission
Apr 2011 07

£5K Challenge Phase a (Business Plan Competition) Submission

Deadline Friday 25th February 13:00 pm

Finalist announcement: 23rd of March, 2011 [..]

£5K Challenge Submission
Feb 2011 07

2011 £5K Challenge Phase a (Business Plan) Submission

Deadline Friday 25th February 13:00 pm, 2011

Finalist annoucement: 23rd of March, 2011

Nov 2010 27

M Innovations Epidural Device by Jenny Dean

We have developed a functional prototype of a disposable medical device to reduce the risk of needle overshoot during epidural insertion in women in labour. Of the 355,000 obstetric epidurals performed in the UK each year, 1% result in overshoot, puncturing the membrane surrounding the spinal cord resulting in severe headaches in over 80%, which requires further hospital treatment in 70% of these. Our team, consisting of a mechanical design engineer, anaesthetists and an MBA graduate, has already received an EEDA grant and applied for patents in UK and US.

Cambridge Environmental Trading Group by Laurie Green-Eames

The Cambridge Environmental Trading Group would act as an exchange for a market-based cap and trade scheme to reduce the environmental impact of universities. Each year credits of energy usage would be auctioned off to each college/department by the exchange. Any college/department that exceeds its allowance would either have to trade credits or pay a fine to the exchange. Not only would this company help universities to reduce their environmental impact, but it would also prompt them to save money through energy and waste reduction – something that would be particularly useful in the current age of austerity.

Numerical Psychoeducation by Jan Zirk-Sadowski

This education project is going to provide people suffering from moderate mathematical difficulties, or even more severe cognitive disorders such as developmental dyscalculia with a valuable, scientifically documented training method which allows to regain self-confidence in mathematical domains and become a healthy functioning mastermind also in everyday logic. The training course is targeted to secondary and high school students and their parents who are keen on supporting their children in educational development, but it will be priceless also to adults who would like to switch their career paths from humanities to sciences, but who are afraid of quantitative tasks.

SkinCare by Lu Tan

A convenient “all-in-one” napkin set for skincare. A set contains 4 napkins (each for cleansing, refreshment, moisturing and powdering) to be applied one by one onto the face. The procedure takes about 3 minutes and does not require rinsing with water. Depending on customers’ needs, there can be different combinations of napkins (different types of set). With this innovative light-weight product, women no longer need to carry mini-bottles of gel, cream or powder in handbags and are able to freshen-up and powder-up anywhere anytime. With some modifications of the design, the product can also be marketed for men.

OneCard by Moses Hoyt

More and more people are using RFID. In credit cards, ID cards, meal cards, Oyster cards, you name it. Yet the more RFID cards that you have in your wallet, the less useful they become. Their benefits are lost. Interference gets in the way. OneCard is a service that integrates all your RFID cards, making one manageable, convenient and secure card. Built on a database linking the card providers with the customers. OneCard is used like any other RFID card. Usage and services available can be user managed and tracked. Revenue is generated from card providers and customers.

Novel Inertial Sensor by Eva Hradetzky, Vivian Mohr, Kevin Cheng, Noriko Kuya, Petros Farah, WKH and Vivek Thacker

What do areas as diverse as oil exploration, missile technology and next generation gaming have in common? They demand the ability to detect even the tiniest accelerations and vibrations. We’re marketing a next generation MEMS sensor developed at Cambridge with a sensitivity 1000x better than current MEMS devices. It’s robust and cheap, offers unmatched noise reduction and temperature stability and at 2.5 cm in size is an order of magnitude smaller than conventional devices of similar sensitivity. We are also interested in breakthrough applications like improved navigation of deep drills and large format interactive touch screens-all potentially huge markets.

HemaStor by Andrew Lynch, R. Chen and David McNally

Over 100,000 units of processed transfusion blood worth approximately £10M are discarded in the UK each year after they have exceeded their 35 day shelf life. While freezing blood extends this shelf life, it requires refrigerated storage and is prohibitively expensive. Using patent-pending technology my collaborators and I have developed a technique to safely store blood in dried (powder) form. This allows blood to be stored indefinitely and inexpensively at room temperature, eliminating waste and simplifying supply chain. After rehydration, standard transfusion techniques can be used. We plan to license this technology to public and private blood banks worldwide.

PCB-Integrated Optical Sensor by Tanya Hutter and N. Bamiedakis

There is a strong interest in the development of low-cost sensors for healthcare, environmental and homeland-security applications. Optical sensors offer high sensitivity, low power consumption and immunity to electromagnetic interference.We propose a low-cost sensor integrating a polymeric waveguide array on standard printed circuit board with the required electronic circuitry. This hand-held device can be fabricated with conventional methods and incorporates all electronic and photonic components on the same substrate. Chemical functionalization can be used to generate ‘fingerprints’ for specific analytes. The device can incorporate a transmitter for wireless sensing and also can be miniaturized to fit in mobile phones.

eComm by Tongyun Li

Due to severe signal penetration loss, large buildings blocks have increasing demand for in-building infrastructures to provide wireless services (3G, Wifi and etc). Most recent market research forecasts worldwide deployment revenues from in-building wireless systems to grow from $3.8 billion in 2007 to over $15 billion in 2013. Distributed antenna systems (DAS) is an attractive approach for improving radio coverage in buildings. However, traditional DAS suffers from a requirement for high linearity, dynamic range and energy consumption. Using digital signal processing techniques, we have demonstrated a high efficient digital DAS system with dynamic range over 60dB and reduced data rate of 208 times. Reconfigurable digital system and high energy efficiency lead to significant reduction in both construction and maintenance costs.

Kaleedo in Brief by Wenqi Chen

The smartphone apps market has been lead by Apple since its introduction of iPhone. Kaleedo has developed a proprietary software platform that allows other handset manufacturers (e.g. Nokia) to have access to over 250,000 apps and participate in apps revenue sharing for the first time. App developers for iPhone can also extend their reach to other smartphones (e.g. Android) and enlarge their revenue without modifying their source code. A roughly working prototype has been developed and patent filed for key components. We are seeking seed capital to produce the prototype demonstrable to handset manufacturers and thereafter route to market.

Programming is Power by Theodore Hong

Children are so immersed in technology that even two-year-olds know how to play songs on an iPhone. However, modern design makes it impossible for children to tinker and experiment with technology.  Where previous generations happily took apart transistor radios or programmed BBC Micros, today’s children get only impenetrable shiny boxes. We build software that opens up the boxes.  Our products teach children to write their own apps and take control of the smartphone or laptop.  Parents can give their children an advantage in tomorrow’s world by giving them the ability to create technology, not just passively consume it.

iClickMusic by Sharon Lee

Music is inherent in the very nature of humans. The tiny infant will often respond to a rhythmic sound, beginning to hum even before speaking. Unfortunately most people never know the joys of creating their own music. iClickMusic is a program to record your hum and make your own music. By analysing the frequency spectrum of hum, it can calculate and generate the corresponding harmonics and chords automatically. You are offered a drop-down box to choose from a standard list of musical genre and instruments options. Simple overdubbing in just 1 click and everyone can be a musician!

POCDATT- Point of Care Diagnosis and Treatment Toolbox by Muntaga Umar-sadig

As a result of inadequate transportation infrastructure, cost pressures, derelict locations, and laborious conventional methods for diagnosing, it isn’t efficient for doctors to follow up on initial “consultation” visits to patients in rural remote communities across Africa - with treatment plans. For example, in Nigeria, it takes on average, three community visits to prepare, test, confirm diagnosis and discuss treatment plans with patients. POCDATT will maximise each visit by equipping doctors with an innovative toolbox that combines “point of care diagnosis” tools with pictorial treatment plans expressed in local dialects that empower patients to take ownership of their management plans – initial focus will be on AIDS, malaria and TB.

Identity by Frederick Widl and Christian Gruber

Identity is a virtual ID, you log in any computer or OS-driven device (iPhone, iPad, etc.) and you will find the same settings the same software and licenses, the same files, mails, contacts, favourites, applications, music, photos and many more. Further all passwords requested by your computer/device or websites you are visiting, or mail account will be automatically applied by Identity without your notice. Your Identity with all your settings and data is securely stored on a server, to use and edit files, Identity downloads the needed data from your server account, software can be used if existing on the device or via cloud systems.

WorkingCycle by Sergio Koc-Menard

Over the next 5 years, 3.2 million people will retire in the UK alone. Two-thirds of them, however, will consider working in retirement. WorkingCycle is a social partnership for employers that value the talent of retirees. Using an online exchange, employers can build a shared pool of retirees, and help their retiring employees find flexible assignments. Companies profit because they can reduce recruitment costs, while branding themselves as age-friendly employers. Retirees gain because they can increase their savings, while keeping time for retirement activities. Society benefits because extending working lives is essential to sustain economic growth and finance public pensions.

Transdermal Micro-needle for convenient, noninvasive vitamin B12 dosing by Lindsay Kellar-Parsons

Elderly deficiency of vitamin B12 (10-15% of those over 60) can cause irreversible neurological damage, anemia, osteoporosis, and cerebrovascular and cardiovascular diseases. Establishing + maintaining healthy B12 levels require 6 initial injections + 1 injection every 3 months. This process is uncomfortable, invasive, & may require frequent doctor appointments. The proposed solution is a trans-dermal, micro-needle patch that would deliver B12 and replace injections as a comfortable, noninvasive, & convenient alternative. This patch would reduce doctor visits, alleviate patient discomfort, and increase convenience of B12 dosing. This would also target developing countries and vegetarians who suffer from this deficiency.

Appzyme by Ollie Wright

The 21st century has been declared the “biotech” century, but yet for DNA manipulation we are still reliant on restriction enzyme technology developed over 40 years ago. When these inflexible tools are not fit for purpose, synthetic biology projects are compromised. Rather than relying on a traditionally constrained protein-DNA interaction for target site recognition, Appzyme can be charged with any short piece of DNA that is complimentary to the desired target sequence – thus guiding the enzyme to cut exactly where the end user wants, no compromise required. Appzyme with user programmable control - a limitless number of DNA manipulation possibilities.

Tangam Energy by Roger Coulston

We wish to extract energy out of the environmental waste of cows using a novel technology. We can install low cost anaerobic digestors onto the 9000 Aus/Nz dairy/cattle farms with herd sizes of 100-500 cows. Our opportunity is to convert dairy waste to methane gas for electrical generation and using new technology convert biogas into methanol. We will lease the space for the digesters from the farmers and generate revenue from the sale of electricity to national power grid and the high quality methanol to chemical suppliers.

Solar-Powered Mosquito Device by Neesha Harnam

Mosquitoes bring great suffering through the transmission of tropical diseases such as malaria and dengue fever. The use of a solar-powered device to address this problem has minimal cost and no side effects. The device I am proposing will be powered using solar energy, attracting mosquitoes in the vicinity through the emission of carbon dioxide. Subsequently, it utilizes a suction mechanism coupled with electrified wires prior to dropping them into a mesh basket at the bottom. Similar devices are available at present, though the use of solar energy to power large-scale devices has yet to be seen.

A next generation low-cost passive RFID accurate real-time location sensing by Mr. Sithamparanathan Sabesan

In-building real time location/tracking systems (RTLS) are currently limited by costly active RFID tags. We have overcome this challenge by developing a low-cost passive RTLS and have shown that the coverage of $0.05 passive tags can greatly be enhanced while simultaneously achieving a 100% detection success rate and allowing location with sub-metre resolution. These breakthroughs will enable for the first time low cost identification and high precision location of items. This patented system will enable, a wide range of new applications, including automated checkout which will eliminate checkout queues, and passenger/luggage tracking which will reduce/eliminate aircraft turn-around delay and lost-luggage.

£100 for 100 Words
Sep 2010 21

It’s easy: just pitch your business idea to us in 100 words or fewer. The challenge here is to condense what you want to say and get all the major points across in just a paragraph. There is no need to give away any private information – a public summary is enough to win the competition. Then, submit your summary online at www.cue.org.uk.

Submission deadline: 29th of October, 2010.