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27 Oct 2016

Pitch@Palace On Tour Cornwall – Entrepreneur Profiles


Describe your roadmap to success

11 million people in the UK suffer from hearing loss, primarily caused by ageing or noise. EarTex builds smart ear-worn technology to protect and enhance hearing. Our consumer device will tackle the barriers to hearing aid adoption, while our industrial device will prevent noise induced hearing loss in loud workplaces.

What do you hope to get out of your involvement in Pitch@Palace?

Our social mission is to end the isolation and loneliness that results from hearing loss. We do this in 2 ways:

  1. Preventing hearing loss.
  2. Helping those with hearing loss.

While our products are designed and engineered for these 2 purposes, we also need to raise awareness on these issues to truly achieve this social mission. This is why Action on Hearing Loss are an important partner for us. People need to know how to protect their hearing and how to get help when they need it.

Pitch@Palace is a great platform to allow us to raise this awareness. We hope to connect with people who care for those with hearing loss, but also with employers who need to protect the hearing of their workers.

Give your top 3 tips for any startup that is considering applying or has applied to Pitch@Palace

  • Be clear about what you want to achieve through the program
  • Prepare well and practice your pitch to be within the time limit. Take advantage of the platform given to you.
  • Take advantage of the networking opportunities at the Pitch@Palace events.

Round Table

Describe your roadmap to success

We were advised by our business incubator SETsquared to apply for Pitch@Palace in which we were lucky enough to be selected as one of the companies representing the South West on Tour. We went on to be selected as one of the three prizewinning companies after a delivering our 3 minute elevator pitch to a room of highly connected industry experts. We are delighted to be attending the Pitch@Palace and can’t wait to get stuck in at the boot camp

What do you hope to get out of your involvement in Pitch@Palace?

We’ve recently struck up a partnership with Dorset Council who are keen to roll EasyVideo out across their Local Authority, to support this roll out we require investment and are SEIS approved. We are also looking to strengthen our networks and connect with anyone who has experience, is employed in and/or has a general interest in the health and social care sector – we believe there is nothing you can’t learn from meeting others. Furthermore, we are keen on opening up discussions to potential resellers.

Give your top 3 tips for any startup that is considering applying or has applied to Pitch@Palace

  • You must be passionate about what you do
  • Understand how Pitch@Palace can help your business
  • Enjoy the process; you get to meet some amazing people with incredible life experience and business acumen


Describe your roadmap to success

Previously I had been selling face recognition to government departments for national security (border & passport control) and saw the opportunity to develop applications using the same underlying technology and target commercial businesses. Mark Bailey (Technical Director) and I started working together in 2014 and since then we’ve scoped the market, developed a solutions portfolio, built a strong partner network and tested the application in a number of proof of concepts with some major named retailers.

We are receiving qualified substantial leads from our partners – Microsoft, Fujitsu, GE and Ricoh.

The company has been self-funded to date but due to the increasing market demand we feel the time is now right to obtain additional funds and bring on expertise to accelerate and maximise our growth potential both here in the UK and internationally.

What do you hope to get out of your involvement in Pitch@Palace?

  • We hope to gain visibility of the exciting opportunity that TouchByte presents to individuals with additional funds and expertise to help accelerate our growth plans.
  • To demonstrate the solutions and get useful feedback from interesting individuals with many and varied backgrounds.
  • To refine our pitch to grab attention and interest from potential investors.
  • To identify possible individuals that have experience, funds and who are personable to assist in the next exciting phase of our growth.

Give your top 3 tips for any startup that is considering applying or has applied to Pitch@Palace

  • Be clear why you’re doing it
  • Think BIG
  • Just do it…


Describe your roadmap to success

From a tragedy that I could do nothing to prevent while I was a military peacekeeper in the aftermath of the Former Yugoslavian civil war to today, almost 20 years later, the roadmap for Uzimatech has been beset with challenges and setbacks, requiring a peculiar degree of perseverance and dedication throughout the last two decades.

After resigning from my military career in 1998 I founded a digital agency and over the next 12 years I grew this to being one of the most well respected agencies in the South West, winning numerous major industry awards for the strength of our work. Throughout I was keen to develop my Uzimatech concept but for various reasons was unable to devote sufficient time or resource to the idea. Instead, I maintained a strong philanthropic outlook throughout my tenure, an outlook that is part of who I am, and my leadership led to international recognition when my agency won the United Nations Pioneer award for Strategic Corporate Philanthropy in 2012, one of only 35 companies in the world, and the only company in the UK to win this prestigious award.

After a difference of opinion, and in order to protect the existing workforce, I left my agency shortly afterwards to pursue my vision of developing products that would make a difference.  After a few false starts, and with diminishing resources, Uzimatech was formed in 2014 when David Taylor from the University of South Wales joined the team. His expertise in wearable technology enabled the company to complete a Proof of Concept study and a comprehensive technical and commercial feasibility study followed with the help of two small grants from the Smart Cymru programme.  We subsequently won the People’s Choice Award at VentureFest Wales, and registered our first patent in May 2015.

Over the last 18 months we have been seeking further investment to develop the Uzimatech product, and have been enhancing the product designs, developing our network of contacts and supporters, and undertaking further product and market research.  Cutting a promising military career short was a big decision, and one that I have had cause to reconsider on many occasions since, however the recent win at the Pitch@Palace On Tour Cornwall event is another positive step on our roadmap to success.  I do not forget the reason why I am attempting what at times seems to be the impossible, and that underlying reason gives me the motivation to succeed regardless of the challenges that need to be overcome.

What do you hope to get out of your involvement in Pitch@Palace?

If Pitch@Palace could achieve anything for me, it would be to introduce me to just one person who genuinely wants to make a difference with their lives, and who is willing to support me to deliver products of which we can all be proud.

Give your top 3 tips for any startup that is considering applying or has applied to Pitch@Palace

  • Talk about your idea with passion – if you don’t show that you believe in your own idea, then nobody else will. Every time you mention your idea, do so from the heart. Mean what you say, and say what you mean.
  • If you can’t describe your idea to your mother so that she understands what you’re up to, then your concept needs to be simplified.
  • In the words of the legendary Baz Luhrmann “You are not as fat as you think you are.” Regardless of how nervous you are, in every presentation to every audience talk about your idea as if your life depended on it. Remember that everyone wants to hear your idea, that you are special, and that countless others would pay good money to be in your shoes. Be the best that you can be.

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