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Venture Further 2018: Meet the finalists

Venture Further is our annual business start-up competition for students and recent alumni from across the University. There are prizes of £10,000 and £2,500 in each category and winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday 3 May 2018.

Here are this year’s 16 finalists…

Business category


Hauss provides a fast, convenient and secure marketplace to connect the highest quality tradespeople with those in need of home improvement and repair.

  • James Tharian, MBA
  • Lewis Ryan, MBA
  • Lucas Alban, MBA


The Andean Baby Superfood: ‘Qali-Wawa’, is a Native Peruvian language that means ‘healthy child’. It is a mix of fruits, vegetables and the superfood Quinoa as a core ingredient, which provides a substantial nutritional value, such as high content of fibre, protein, vitamins, and minerals that babies need for healthy growth.

  • Erick Vera Bazan, MBA

Sense My Steps

Gait offers a unique human behavioural signature that can be used for a diverse set of applications. From improving performance in sports, to detecting human movement abnormalities for healthcare. Sense My Steps uses advanced machine learning techniques to detect fine-grained variabilities of gait patterns in humans. Our company offers a unique combination of sensor design and machine learning expertise to offer detection of meaningful patterns from gait data obtained from a unique floor sensor system.

  • Omar Costilla Reyes, PhD, School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering


A pair of great frames shouldn’t leave your wallet bare. Born in The University of Manchester, Specscart aims to show that glasses are not just sight correction instruments – but fashion accessories. From manufacturing their own glasses to a game changing website interface which allows users to choose and customise highest quality eyewear, this independent student start-up is changing the way glasses are sold and perceived. 

  • Siddharth Sethi, MSc International Business and Management

Digital category


Skyscape is unleashing the value of underutilised rooftops in cities through AI-powered analytics and marketplace platform. We improve property yields by maximising utilisation of rooftops, whilst opening up new opportunities in densely populated areas. Our vision is to use rooftops to build infrastructure for urban air mobility systems such as drones and air taxis.

  • Damian Kysely, BAEcon Economics
  • Brandon Bell (external)


Macawly’s vision is to help people find their calling at work. We help organisations to build a passionate workforce by matching businesses and individuals together based on their core values and motivation.  We use a research-based technology that captures the uniqueness of each separate business to help them find people who fit their specific cultures driving passion, commitment, and retention. 

  • Michal Wisniewski, MEnt Master of Enterprise
  • Danny Sodergren (external)


AiPatient revolutionises medical education by creating the first artificially intelligent patients. Healthcare students and professionals have been unable to access patients outside of a hospital... until now. By enabling the next generation of doctors to practice effectively and examine their own progress, AiPatient believe they can improve patient care.

  • Scott Martin, Management and Innovation in Healthcare
  • Maksim Belousov, PhD Natural Language Processing / Machine Learning (CDT)

English Planner

English Planner is a language learning platform for Chinese students. We promote engagement and progress by creating a personalised study plan with our users. We focus on our students' needs so they can communicate more effectively in their academic, professional and personal life. English Planner – Progress Every Day.

  • Siqi Chang, MSc Marketing
  • Sean Timon (external)

Research category

Beehive Drones

Beehive drones come with an innovation to solve agriculture problems by empowering farmers and government official with an easy way to maximize the farming area. We have specially designed our drones to help farmers to monitor their land and precisely do their task. With the IOT based swarm drone technology, our drones can scan every single crop in the farm and analyse the farm conditions. And therefore according to the analysis, our drone would customise each treatment according to the needs of each crop.

  • Muhamad Ritvaldi, MSc Communication Engineering
  • Ishak Hilton P T, MSc Communication Engineering
  • Anindita Pradana, MSc International Business and Management

The Pentone Family

Innovative Alcoholic Beverages. Lining up to give the UK's £47bn a year market a health kick.

  • Philip Robinson, MEnt Master of Enterprise


UrbanChain is a leading company in designing, developing and disseminating blockchain technology for utility services including energy, transportation and health. We use our innovative and ground breaking approach to re-design different markets, optimise their performance, democratise the market structure and minimise the cost of utility services for end users.

  • Dr Somayeh Taheri, PhD in Planning and Landscape
  • Dr Mohammad Hajhashem (external)


Simplicity, sophistication and savvy – three words behind the cutting edge of AIVector™ inventions. AIVector™ is applying artificial intelligence (AI) in the life sciences domain in order to automate the most basic and complicated task in molecular cloning - the plasmid vector construction. The application of AI in the plasmid vector construction will speed up the task from weeks to hours. 

  • Tengku Nurfarhana Tengku Aziz, PhD in Biotechnology and Enterprise

Social category

Helping Hand Community Lottery

In a time where local Councils are experiencing funding cuts and many Charities are seeing a decrease in donations, local communities all across the UK are in need of a Helping Hand. Through a social franchise business model, Helping Hand Community Lottery aims to empower local people to be the Helping Hand within their own local community.

  • Reece Drew, MEnt Master of Enterprise


Parents face a growing problem - babies are constantly outgrowing clothes! Bundlee is the UK's first baby clothing rental subscription, that lets parents rent clothes and return them once outgrown. Renting extends the lifespan of baby clothes, which alleviates the cost for parents whilst improving the environmental impact. 

  • Eve Kekeh, MEnt Master of Enterprise


There are over 2 billion small-scale farmers worldwide. Over a billion of them live in or near absolute poverty. FERMENTAS is a technology-based social enterprise that seeks to provide small-scale farmers with technology and tools that help them lift themselves out of poverty and grow to be commercially successful. By empowering small-scale farmers with technology and knowledge, we are democratising agri-innovation and making it available to everybody.

  • Leopoldo Herrera Rodriguez, PhD Chemical Engineering and Analytical Sciences
  • Mohammad El Hajj, PhD Biotechnology and Enterprise

Right to Hear

Considering that approximately 5.3% of the world population (360 million) is subject to hearing impairment, manufacturing hearing aids at a cheaper cost using analogue technology is most certainly pertinent. Initially we would establish our company in India which accounts for 63 million and then escalate to across the world. 

  • Mrudul Raut, MSc Audiology
  • Pushkar Deshpande (external)