The Royal Society of Chemistry’s Emerging Technologies Competition 2019 is looking for this year’s most life-changing creations.
It has helped innovators raise more than £32m in funding since it was launched in 2013.
Backed by some of the world’s biggest companies, such as Unilever, Croda, Johnson Matthey, RSSL and Pfizer, entries are now open until 5 July for the next big success story whose mastery of the chemical sciences helped create a product that can deliver a real-world benefit for wider society.
As well as a £10,000 cash prize, winners will receive world-class mentorship and support from the competition’s high-profile backers, as well as business and pitch training from the Cambridge Judge Business School.
The competition is open to small companies or university spin outs based in the UK, EU, Norway or Iceland with fewer than 20 employees and a turnover of less than £2m.
Entries are invited in four categories:
- Energy and the environment
- Food and drink
- Enabling technologies.
Previous winners include Aqdot Ltd, who won the Emerging Technologies Competition in 2013 for its encapsulation technology, which can be used for improving air quality, advanced personal care and better medicines.
After winning, it received support from GSK, Croda and P&G, who provided advice and guidance on a range of topics, from lab techniques and chemical regulations to building a plan for commercialisation and identifying potential customers.
Since winning the competition, Aqdot has grown fast, raising more than £9m in equity investment and acquiring new lab space. Most recently, in April of this year, it completed a £6m Series B funding round to accelerate the commercialisation of its Aq™Bit technology, which captures, holds and releases materials as needed.
The company is now focusing on the high value sectors of air quality, personal care and life sciences, recently releasing the Acitote® agrochemical pod sealant product with its partner, Intracrop, as well as its first household item, Oderase, with online supermarket, Ocado.
Last year’s winners included Smartwound, a new dressing from the University of Bath that changes colour if a wound becomes infected, and HexagonFab, whose biomarker detection technology can be used to quickly test for allergens in food production.
Applicants are advised that the technology entered must have some form of IP protection.
For further information and details on how to apply for the Emerging Technologies Competition 2019, visit www.rsc.org/competitions/emerging-technologies/ Applicants are required to be available 28–29 October in London if shortlisted.