SOUP event reveals high entrepreneurial activity in Somerset
Somerset entrepreneurs pitched their business ideas to a room of ‘Dragons’ in a bid to win the first Somerset SOUP event.
The powerful networking event was delivered by TDA and was sponsored by Somerset Chamber of Commerce and Albert Goodman to support entrepreneurial activity in Somerset.
Ges Green, Somerset Enterprise Centres Manager, said: “We are thrilled with the success of the event and the networking opportunities it provided for these start-up businesses. The feedback we had was really positive and the atmosphere generated at the venue was great. It is definitely an event that we will look to do again in the near future.
“All the business ideas were superbly delivered and we are looking forward to working with them all. Our congratulations go to Elaine Owen of Timepix Ltd, who was voted the winning business by the ‘Dragons’.”
TDA will help Elaine through the next steps of her business journey with support from TDA Business Advisors. As the winning pitcher, Elaine will also have free access to the Somerset Enterprises Centres, which she can work from, hold meetings and continue developing the business.
Timepix Ltd started life as the winning entry to a staff innovation challenge at Ordnance Survey (OS), Britain’s national mapping organisation and is now being developed as a stand-alone business with the help of the OS Geovation Hub in Shoreditch.
Using the Timepix platform people can explore old photos (over 50 years) geo-located to the position where they were actually taken. Images can be viewed on mobile or desktop and are optionally combined with historic street maps to allow the user to peel away modern development.
Elaine said: “I’m delighted to win Somerset SOUP and pleased that our story has won such support and that others are captivated by our ideas. Thanks to the event, Timepix Ltd has increased its connections, which will help achieve our objectives of growing into a national business from Somerset.
“The next few months will be dedicated to refining the site and adding thousands of previously unpublished images from the collections I have been working with. The site will then open for more collections to join in and interest is high.”
The runners up were Bubble-Hub and imagineAge, who will use the event as a platform to continue to build on their start up businesses. Bubble-Hub is a funky new Mobile Bubble Tea and refreshment outlet and imagineAge enhances the quality of life and welllbeing for older people.
Cllr Clare Aparicio Paul said: “It was great to see the entrepreneurial spirit in action and all three businesses spoke extremely well and with great passion about the opportunities and challenges they face.
“The innovation demonstrated by the businesses pitching at SOUP is a great reflection on many other entrepreneurs in the area. We work hard to make the county a place that means business and we are delighted to be involved”.
TDA is also a sponsor at the Somerset Business Awards, which recognises the innovative and progressive businesses in Somerset.
To find out more about business support in Somerset and the SOUP entrepreneurs, keeping up to date with how their businesses develop, visit www.somerset-enterprise-centres.co.uk