24th November 2017

CUE £100 for 100 Words: Winners Announced


THE SCORES FOR THE 100 WORDS COMPETITION ARE IN! In alphabetical order, the winners are:

Phillipp Braeuninger-Weimer, with a nanomaterial sensor that measures carryover contamination in batch processes in the food industry.

Michael Coto, with a low-cost water-purifying photocatalyst for rural communities.

Christian Hoecker, with a CUED-developed patent-pending Li-Ion battery technology.

Tom Hudson, with an application of radar technology for remotely monitoring groundwater depth.

Jez Lim Marson with ‘RenoSure’ - a sensor which fits into a patient’s vein and measures kidney function wirelessly.

Patrik Milohanic with ‘Streetcast’ - an app for street performers to interact with audiences worldwide over the internet.

Katarzyna Sokol with inorganic, reversible thermochromic pigments for home appliances and industrial machinery.

L Wallace, with biotattoos for identifying livestock requiring antibiotics.

Maria Teresa Perez Zaballos with an accelerometer-enhanced vestibular implant to treat vertigo.

Maria Teresa Perez Zaballos et al with ‘MyCornea’ - a biofabricated corneal transplant.

Thanks to everyone who entered! Competition was fierce this year with 271 entries.

We’re looking forward to seeing many of the winners and runner-ups fleshed out in our £2000 competition, where you’ll have the chance to really show what you can do.

(If you've won a prize, we'll contact you via the email you used in your submission to confirm.)

10th October 2017

Cambridge University Entrepreneurs Grand Launch 2017

6pm 16th October 2017

Department of Engineering


With over £50,000 to award to the university's best young entrepreneurs this year, CUE is back and truly better than EVER before! Join us for Grand Launch 2017. After a quick run down of we’ve got planned, we'll hand over to talks from two of the Cambridge cluster’s most successful entrepreneurs:

Dr Darrin Disley: a relentless advocate of entrepreneurship, angel investor and CEO of Horizon Discovery: a life-sciences company whose valuation at IPO was £120M in 2014 and is now over £375M.

Dr Steve Marsh: CUE competition alumnus who finished his PhD only 3 years ago and CEO of GeoSpock, which has raised over £10M to produce the next generation of petabyte-scale databases. 

Following the talks will be a team-forming and networking session with food and drinks where you will talk to the speakers and meet potential teammates for this year’s competitions!


16th May 2017

CUE Grand Finale £5k Competition Finalists

Discover our CUE 2017 £5K Competition Finalists



Open Diagnostics

Open Diagnostics is a Cambridge-based social enterprise, developing a low-cost ‘programmable’ paper-based diagnostic platform technology, for the detection of crop and livestock viral infections across low income countries. The technology uses ‘cell-free’ synthetic biology, and has already been validated for detection of Zika and Ebola viruses. Our first diagnostic will be for surveillance of Foot and Mouth Disease (Aphthae epizooticae), a globally-distributed livestock virus which can be devastating for rural farmers in endemic regions. The test will simultaneously improve farmers' incomes, by certifying meat as safe for export; and improve the efficacy of national disease surveillance & control programs, which are critical to the management of disease outbreaks. We are supported by the Centre for Global Equality and Synthetic Biology Strategic Research Initiative.

Website: www.open-diagnostics.org.

Open Diagnostics.png

Cambridge Cancer Genomics

Cambridge Cancer Genomics is transforming the way cancer patients are treated through an integrated pipeline to track disease relapse and response to therapy.

Website:  http://www.cancergenomics

Twitter: @CCGenomics



Researchers want dynamic medical and genetic data and people want to own their data and learn more about their genome. We have built the heterogeneous platform to allow individuals with genetic data (e.g. from 23andMe) to create a profile and participate directly in ongoing research projects, controlling when and how their data is shared and used. At the same time, we are working directly with rare disease patient groups and researchers to generate, store, analyze, and share dynamic medical and genetic data used in research and healthcare. We believe that creating a secure, patient-centric marketplace for genetic data will make it easier to conduct genetics research and follow-up studies not only in healthcare, but for a wide variety of organisations.



Halo provides wearable pico-solar lighting to ensure every person has access to safe, healthy and affordable lighting. Our approach offers a source of light to the three billion people that don’t have reliable access to electricity and are forced to use dangerous and toxic kerosene lamps and candles.

Our unique technology has led to a substantially smaller device whilst continuing to offer up to five hours of bright light each night. The device can now fit comfortably on the wrist offering portable and wearable lighting. Our devices can allow people to continue to work, study, and socialise at night. The unique portable nature also provides a source of light for people displaced from their homes by natural disasters and civil wars as well as those travelling alone at night. Our devices can provide light to every person at night and offer them the freedom to pursue their aspirations.



Sirona’s goal is to fight gynaecological cancers and STIs through early detection.  Sirona is a low cost, non-invasive, at home, rapid diagnostic test that has a unique value proposition. It strives to drive regular reproductive health screening and empower women across generations.

Website: www.sironawomen.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sirona-Women

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SironaWomen



Adjumas is a synthetic biology platform, harnessing an immunogenic protein from a mollusc. Adjumas will develop a new class of adjuvants, molecules that enhance the immune response, to improve cancer vaccines.

We will implement a sustainable and large scale manufacturing process, that will allow us to enhance and tailor the immune response, depending on the selected antigen.

Twitter: @adjumas

Facebook: Adjuma



The digitalised world hosts increasingly complex systems, such as production plants, data centres or trading engines. These systems are controlled by several hundreds or thousands of parameters influencing metrics like energy consumption, reliability, and performance. Designing analytical control models for all important parameters is difficult, even if the relevant signals can easily be identified.

Deep reinforcement learning provides an end-to-end framework for learning to control complex systems without requiring to provide a model of how the system works. Yet, as an emerging technology, it is difficult to use in practice. reinforce.io builds open source components to help build practical deep reinforcement learning solutions. On top of our open source framework, we will offer custom integrations, deployments and support.

Website: www.reinforce.io
Email: contact@reinforce.io



Millions of Indian children fail to acquire the skills they need to fulfil their potential because they don’t have access to qualified educators. Slate2Learn’s goal is to leverage market forces and data analytics in order to deploy high quality digital tutors at scale at the bottom of the pyramid in India. We offer existing/aspiring tutors the opportunity to start a tech-enabled micro-business in their home, to cater to up to 100 children in their community. For less than $4 a month, children can learn on Slate2Learn’s “digital tutor” daily.  Slate2Learn’s proprietary digital tutoring technology combines deep pedagogical expertise with data-driven learning algorithms so as to offer each child a customised learning experience. We opened our first 3 commercial tuition centres in Delhi in January 2017 and we plan to reach 50,000 children by 2019, via a network of 500 digital tuition centres.

Website: www.slate2learn.com




logolab.ai is a Software-as-a-Service online logo generator that leverages Artificial Intelligence to instantaneously create original, semantically rich and unique artwork. logolab addresses both the end-users of a logo as well as creative professionals. In the simplest use case, a customer enters a brand name and optional keywords and logolab will automatically and instantaneously generate logos that match the request. As opposed to with human designers, with logolab customers do not have to pay for logo drafts or time spent on generating ideas – they only have to pay if they find a logo they like and want to use.  

Contact: cue@logobot.ai


Icona Diagnostic Systems

Icona Diagnostic Systems develops artificial intelligence algorithms to improve breast cancer diagnosis. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women, motivating countries around to the world to implement large scale screening programmes aimed at identifying cancers at early stages in development. But despite the success of these programmes, for every life saved, three women receive false positive results, which can sometimes lead to unnecessary biopsy and treatment.

To solve this problem, we have developed a deep learning algorithm that analyzes and classifies mammograms in order to provide actionable information to radiologists, including lesion location and biological features crucial for making a diagnosis. The predictions produced by our model have great potential to assist radiologists in making better diagnoses, reduce the harms of unnecessary invasive procedures, and reduce the cost of healthcare services

15th May 2017

CUE Grand Finale Networking Session Slides

CUE Grand Finale Networking Session Slides

Find the presentation slides for:

25th April 2017


7PM, 10th May

Department of Engineering

Lecture Theatre 0


Come join us on May 10 as our Ideas Take Flight competition finalists in the Social Enterprise, Science & Technology, and the GeoSpock Software streams pitch live on stage for the £5K prize. 

Don’t miss your opportunity to meet our keynote speaker Jacyn Heavens, founder and CEO of Epos Now. Jacyn build his electronic point of sale company without the help of external investment and was able to grow it to a valuation of over $90 million in 2016 – a true self-made entrepreneur who will be sharing his story with us. 

Moreover, we will be announcing the winners of the Young Entrepreneur of the Year competition, who will each receive a £2.5K cash prize along with a 12-month corporate development apprenticeship. 

Watch out for more information over the next few weeks as we are getting ready to leave for the summer with a bang! 

When: 10th May 2017 at 7pm
Where: Engineering department lecture theatre 0

As always, our event is free and open to all Cambridge students, staff and alumni.

28th March 2017

CUE Success - Where are they now?

Converge Software Winner 2015

aving completed their respective master’s degrees in Theoretical Physics and Natural Sciences at Cambridge, Raphael and Gideon joined Entrepreneur First, Europe's leading pre-seed investment programme for technical founders. There they further developed Converge. Converge builds the next generation of wireless and cloud-based technologies to monitor sensors in real-time. The team are on a mission to make wireless sensor networks ubiquitous in the world's most important industries.






Amberbox Technology Winner 2015 (formerly Sinclair Fire)

Having won the Technology Prize at CUE, Sinclair Fire went to go join the YCombinator over the other side of the pond. At YCombinator, Sinclair Fire pivoted from producing detectors which use patented algorithms to monitor infrared levels in your home, to detectors which utilise a patented gunshot detection algorithms to respond immediately following a firearm discharge. The newly named AmberBox team aims to save lives and reduce the number of people needlessly killed by gun violence in America. Amberbox raised $120,000 in a seed round in 2016 and have offices in San Francisco and London.






Waterscope Social Enterprise Winner 2015


Alexander, Nalin, Richard and Tianheng are a unique team of biologists, physicists and material scientists, who were brought together at Cambridge by a passion to empower the bottom billion to secure clean water. Leveraging off their success at CUE they went on to found Waterscope. Waterscope have developed a fast and inexpensive water testing kit that quantifies bacterial contamination within 1-2 hours – ten times quicker than current technology. Consequently, empowering communities to combat water inequality with a fast, inexpensive and simple water testing kit. Waterscope have built up an impressive list of partners including Oxfam and the Centre for Global Equality. Richard was been selected for the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe Science and Healthcare list.




by Julia Robertson

CUE Committee 2016-2017

5th February 2017

CUE's new sponsor and alumni company Healx secures £1.5 million to increase rare disease research

Our newest sponsor - Healx - is a Cambridge-based start up passionate about finding new therapeutic solutions for rare diseases. They use advanced data analytics, including machine learning and modern computational biology techniques to identify novel drug applications in the area of rare diseases. You can read about they recent success here: 


3rd February 2017

CUE's alumni company - Owlstone Medical - raises £9.3 million financing

CUE's alumni company -  Owlstone Medical - is a diagnostics company developing a breathalyzer for disease. The investment round was led by existing investors and will be used to commercially launch the company’s breath biomarker R&D services, including the opening of a new high volume clinical facility, and to fund ongoing clinical trials in lung and colon cancer screening. The funding follows the original investment of $7 million (£4.9 million) that spun Owlstone Medical out in June 2016.

19th October 2016

CUE takes the 2015/16 5k Competition winners to Silicon Valley!

The CUE Silicon Valley initiative was started in 2014, with the idea to enrich the experience of the CUE £5K competition winners. In addition to the £5K prize, the winning teams participate in an (all­ expenses ­paid) intensive one­week tour of the Bay Area, where they get to meet Silicon Valley­-based start­ups, multinational corporations, as well as incubators and investment funds.

This summer, for the third time in a row, CUE brought the winners of the £5K business plan competition to Silicon Valley. This exciting trip provided valuable opportunities for our startups to explore the fascinating entrepreneurial ecosystem around the Bay Area. What follows are testimonials written by the 2016 CUE £5K winners, describing their first-hand experience during the CUE Silicon Valley trip.






At a glance: CUE Silicon Valley trip schedule

Day 1: Google and Google X
Experience by Chitinator (Rachel Blackwell and Kristyna Schinnenburgova)


Our first day in Silicon Valley began with a visit to the world­-renowned tech giant, Google. In the mist of San Francisco’s heat wave, several meetings were planned at Google X for us, but beforehand we took a tour around the famous Googleplex. With over 20.000 employees in their Mountain View site alone, unsurprisingly Google has designed their own bikes that support their bright green, red and yellow theme colours to help their employees manoeuvre their way around the colossal campus. But this is just one of the many ‘colourful’ and symbolic things we passed during our Mountain View tour, including a playground of large android lawn statues, computer history museum, and a Google Maps street view designed car.



The CUE team @ Google Android Sculpture Garden

After eating a complimentary lunch (where we were spoiled for choice) in one of Google’s many eateries, we drove to the Google X site and met with Philip Nelson, Director of Engineering at Google Accelerated Sciences (one of the many teams within Google X). After briefly pitching our ideas to Philip, he in turn explained some of the many projects his team are currently working on and opens our minds to the endless applications of computer science or “deep-­learning” within the healthcare industry. Philip kindly shared with us his team’s progress on a number of projects that utilize cell imaging and deep-­learning to predict the onset of diseases such as diabetic retinopathy and sporadic ALS. Definitely watching this space!


Afterwards, Obi (Wan Kenobi) Felten, Director of Consumer Marketing at Google X’s Moonshot Factory, joined us. Obi gave us a top-­level overview of some of the projects that stem from her team, such as Project Lune­providing internet access through balloons that are flown over regions with no Wifi, Project Wing­fast food (burritos being the test dummy food choice) drone delivery, self­-driving cars, and glucose­-detecting contact lenses for diabetes patients. Obi put a lot of emphasis on how Google X differs from other Alphabet companies: tackling BIG problems that have the potential to make the world a RADICALLY better place! And what if the solution seems impossible to implement? Well, nothing is impossible, unless it defies the laws of physics (the reason why the space elevator project was not taken forward).


Obi’s key take home messages for us were as follows:

  1. Fall in love with problems, not technology

  2. Partner with experts that want to solve the same problem as you

  3. Focus on the user and make sure that you are solving their problem


Google X, with one of the new self driving cars


Embarrassingly enough, before this trip our group knew very little about this hidden gem subsidiary of Alphabet’s. However, I think it is safe to say that this visit has left a lasting impression for all of us who attended. We do have one departing question for you Google X…..Are you hiring?


Day 2: YCombinator and Facebook


Experience by NG:Safe (Laura Mitchell and John Cassidy)


On the second sweltering Californian day we set out to the YCombinator offices in Mountain View. We were met by Jon Levy, one of the partners at this world famous start­up accelerator that has launched the likes of Dropbox, PayPal and AirBnb. Behind its church­-like following, YCombinator has incredibly modest offices and a simple approach to selecting applicants who demonstrate passion and perseverance for their ideas. The accelerator runs twice a year, where early stage companies are given 12 weeks to race from idea to prototype, before pitching to investors on demo day. Although famous for launching tech companies, it now accepts start­ups of all kinds including biotech and social enterprises. The four teams were lucky enough to have helpful one-­on­-one meetings with Jon, who seemed impressed by all our ventures and encouraged us to apply to YC. His advice to new companies was to:


  1. Code

  2. Meet the end user

  3. Exercise (The vast lunch portions at a nearby fast food outlet demonstrated why point three is so relevant in the valley…)


In the afternoon we were given a tour of the Facebook campus, a bizarre place where beyond the security barriers employees exist in a mini Palo Alto parallel universe. Restaurants, healthcare, dentists, mechanics and launderettes take care of the essentials; while bars, salons, sweet shops, art­ studios, games arcades and wood work workshops are available to disrupt thinking and keep the culture creative. This may have been working too well however, as we counted four people at their desks… and we can only assume the rest were sitting on Facebook. After Facebook there was time to relax at the poolside (the Waterscope guys assured us it was OK to swim) before dinner in Palo Alto.


Visiting Facebook’s headquarters


Day 3: Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) Experience by Tenoke (Elyn Shen and Zhongzhao Teng)


This is day 3, another sunny and smiley day. We set off around 9:30 from Sunnyvale to visit KPCB, one of the largest and most established venture capital firm in Silicon Valley due in large to their past success. They were early investors in Amazon, Google and Netscape etc.


A senior partner (Randy Komisar) sat for one and a half hours with us. He briefly introduced himself and the company followed by an engaging and lively Q&A session. We had many questions and he was very open and shared his passion and insights about start­ups and how to be part of the future.


We summarized his key points as below:


  1. Start with a business with a good plan, however you need to discover business and chase the trend over time that will increase the chance of success from cycle to cycle.

  2. For investors, fight for talent is difficult; for start up, it is important to bring partners and investors with new network and prospective.

  3. Investors are mainly interested in investing persons rather than a business and they want to be part of the future.

  4. The top three qualities of a person attracting investment are vision, commitment and reliability.

  5. For a start up, you need to move fast and cheaply so that you can test your assumptions quickly. After success, you need to invest others to share your social responsibility.


We had enjoyable a few hours free time in the afternoon. Some went shopping and some went to explore areas nearby. Dinner was at Stanford University with BASES (The Business Association of Stanford Entrepreneurial Students).


Day 4: Proteus Digital Health
Experience by Waterscope (Tianheng Zhao and Alex Patto)


On the final day of SV trip, we visited Proteus Digital Health, Inc. The company provides the world’s first digital medicine solution. The tiny ingestible sensors embedded in pills can track patients’ medicine taking status and provide physicians with information that cannot be measured before for making better healthcare decisions.



Proteus Digital Health’s tiny sensor: revolutionising the healthcare industry


We first stopped at the manufacturing facilities of the company, where the ingestible sensors are produced and tested. The managers in charge explained the mechanism of digital pills and workflow of chip manufacturing. I was surprised to see that most of jobs were done by high­-precision robots and only limited number of workers were there to assist the machines. In the meantime, “NG:Safe” had few ideas of how to use Proteus’ chips in their application.


After the visit, we headed towards the headquarters of Proteus in Redwood city. George Savage, Co­Founder and Chief Medical Officer gave us a presentation about the clinical results and market feedback of their products, showing digital medicine solutions have positive effects for patients. All four startup companies from Cambridge also presented briefly for ideas and suggestions from Proteus. In the office area, we saw the major leaps between several early stage prototypes and final product, reminding us a company needs to constantly evolve to stay competitive.


We have officially finished our business trip at noon and the whole CUE team travelled to San Francisco together. We could finally relax and enjoy the view of Golden Gate Bridge. Needless to say, everyone has taken satisfying amount of pictures, selfies and group photos. The weather has gone much colder comparing to the first few days in Silicon Valley, but I believe everyone was filled with passion, since we all have found more than what we were looking for.



Golden Gate Bridge: Time to Relax