Unprecedented win for fourth-year Innovation students in start-up competition
13 May 2020
Computer Science with Innovation students, Konstantina Psoma and Roman Bromidge have won the highest University of Bristol accolade for their start-up developed as part of their final-year Innovation project.
After competing against University staff, postgraduate researchers, and alumni, Konstantina and Roman were overcome with emotion as their business name ‘Kaedim’ was revealed as the overall winner of the New Enterprise Competition. The pair is one of only five undergraduate teams to ever win the 19-year old Competition.
Konstantina and Roman will be part of the first graduating cohort at the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (the Centre) which was founded less than four years ago. Created as a curriculum based project as part of their studies, Kaedim uses artificial intelligence to create 3D digital assets in a fraction of the time and now has a top seed grant of £10,000 and 12-month membership of city-based incubator SETsquared Bristol to help them propel their business. Andy Littledale, a lecturer at the Centre who has been supporting them through a fourth-year unit called ‘Building a Demonstrator’, highlights the emphasis the curriculum places on testing the market; “Konstantina and Roman came up with a great idea and worked with Aardman [makers of Wallace and Gromit] to gather real world requirements and to build and test a working prototype. They've worked really hard and it's a credit to them that they managed to demonstrate a clear product-market fit in the middle of a pandemic!”
Demonstrating entrepreneurship is a gender diverse game, Katie Martin Student Enterprise and SME Manager highlighted “We have seen the greatest ever gender diversity in the Competition’s 19-year history with 7 out of 10 finalists’ businesses being led by a woman founder or co-founder and Kadeim is part of this brilliant statistic; it’s a huge achievement and something we are all very proud of”.
This is only the beginning for Kaedim as they have been selected to represent the University of Bristol at the next big SETsquared financial investment event, Grad Invest 2020. They will be joined at the event by fellow innovation students Amber Probyn (Anthropology with Innovation) and Hazel McShane (Physics with Innovation) who will be presenting a femtech product aimed at disrupting the female urinal market. Incoming Undergraduate Director, Ann Padley said, ‘the curriculum is designed to encourage students to pursue their subject specialism in a way that empowers them to become innovators and entrepreneurs who bring positive change to the world. These examples from the Centre’s first graduating class is proof we are doing it right.”
Paddy Ireland, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise said: “The New Enterprise Competition is a great platform to showcase the innovations coming out of the University. Its long history has provided some of the best and brightest from the University with the strong platform they need to launch their businesses.”
Read more about the winners and award in the University of Bristol Press Release dated 7 May 2020.