Twenty-three of Scotland’s most promising entrepreneurs are gearing up to pitch to a panel of judges including Scots tycoon Lord Willie Haughey and Wood Group’s Bob Keiller in a bid to win up to £100k in funding.
They are the finalists in this year’s Scottish EDGE Awards, which will see all 23 go head to head in Round 7 of the competition, which will simulate BBC TV’s Dragon’s Den, on December 7 in Edinburgh.
Three start-ups have already been crowned Higgs EDGE winners in a category which rewards Scotland’s most innovative high-growth businesses in science, technology and engineering.
They are Edinburgh-based Krotos, which has developed a ‘dehumaniser’ – a vocal processor producing monster sounds; Rosyth-based Epipole, which has produced ‘epiCam’ – a hand-held retinal camera to check for retinal vasculature disease, and Glasgow-based Soluis Labs, which has created ‘Soluis Dome’ – a new and unique walk-in 3D experience.
Scottish EDGE Round 7 will take centre stage at the RBS Conference Centre, where the Young EDGE and Wild Card EDGE winners, which include those under the age of 30 and in the very early stages of business respectively, will also be crowned.
The £100,000 prize fund will be allocated as a 50% grant and 50% loan in separate awards of £10,000.
Scottish EDGE Chairman David Shearer said: “Thank you to everyone who entered Scottish EDGE Round 7 in what’s proven to be a very strong group of candidates. Our 23 finalists will now pitch their businesses for the chance of winning funding to boost their businesses – we can’t wait to hear about the exciting innovative Scottish businesses at the finals in Edinburgh.
“We’re also pleased to announce the winners of Higgs EDGE. Congratulations to Krotos, Epipole and Soluis Labs. Their products have the potential to be globally successful and we hope the funding and support they receive from Scottish EDGE will help accelerate this growth. “
About Scottish EDGE
Scottish EDGE is a funding competition aimed at identifying Scotland’s top, innovative, early stage and high growth potential entrepreneurs.
Historically, Scottish EDGE was run by Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise alongside various partners. However, in August 2014 serial entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter and RBS agreed to extend the success of the fund and lead in its delivery going forward creating a £5 million+ fund along with the Scottish Government. The majority of the funding is from the private sector.
As well as award funding, Scottish EDGE provides mentoring and support and signposting to alternative funding.
Winners of Scottish EDGE benefit from:
Funding of up to £100,000 with Scottish EDGE. 50% of this is a pure prize and 50% is a loan which will be used to support the next entrepreneur in line for support
Up to £10,000 grant with Young EDGE for 18-30 year olds
Up to £10,000 grant with Wild Card EDGE for pre-trading
Three prizes (£25,000, £50,000 and £75,000) for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics businesses (STEM)
Signposting to alternate funding and funders where appropriate.
Mentoring and support from a mature entrepreneur accessed through the new Entrepreneurial Scotland and GlobalScot mentoring programmes.
Access to support via our partners Business Gateway, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Social Investment Scotland and the Prince’s Trust
Pitch training delivered by ESpark, Business Gateway and Elevator in Dundee and Aberdeen.
Enrolment into the EDGE Alumni programme where you will get access to events, peer to peer learning and training to enhance your skills and give something back.
Packages of support from leading business support organisations such as Harper Macleod, Johnston Carmichael and James Hallam plus have the chance to learn from and connect with experts from world renowned organisations such as Microsoft at the Scottish EDGE Final.