Scottish EDGE awards more than £1m to most promising start-ups

Round 9 of the competition awards £1.3 million in grants and loans

Finalists in Round 9 of the Scottish EDGE awards have been awarded a total of £1.3 million in grants and loans.
Twenty-one of Scotland’s most promising entrepreneurs pitched their businesses to an expert panel of judges to win up to £100,000 each in grant funding and loans, with 14 crowned as the overall winners.
Also announced were winners of Higgs EDGE, which is designed to identify innovative scienceand technology businesses with global commercialisation potential; Young EDGE, for entrepreneurs under the age of 30, and Wild Card EDGE for businesses who have yet to start trading.
Scottish EDGE is awarded as a 50% grant and a 50% loan. The loan is paid back to help fellow entrepreneurs on their pathway to success. Both the Young EDGE and Wild Card EDGE awards are grants of up to £10,000. In addition, Scottish EDGE provides mentoring, training and access to professional support.
One of the biggest winners on the day was Edinburgh-based Kitsch Drinks Ltd, a previous Young EDGE winner which was awarded the Scottish EDGE maximum amount of £100,000.
Founded by Craig Johnston, Kitsch makes drinks which help consumers “live a life free from the bland, the boring and the artificial.”
Kitsch launched with its Rhubarb & Thai Basil and Cucumber & Fennel Seed sodas in summer 2015 and since then has produced and sold more than 30,000 bottles through a growing network of over 100 independent stockists, as well as directly to consumers at local farmers markets and events.
Scottish EDGE CEO Evelyn McDonald said: “Scottish EDGE’s bi-annual finals have become a highlight of Scotland’s entrepreneurial events calendar. Our recent, well publicised alumni successes are testament to the competition’s impact on the start-ups that we support and we are confident that today’s winners will achieve equally great and inspiring things.
“We received a total of 218 applications for Scottish EDGE round nine from around the country, representing businesses in every sector. The twenty-one businesses who pitched today represent the best of Scotland’s entrepreneurial talent.
“For those who didn’t win this time around, it’s not a closed door, over fifty percent of our winners to date were returning entrants, we encourage both previous and new applicants to apply for Scottish EDGE funding and support. After the New Year we’ll be jumping straight back in as we begin preparations for round ten, opening our application window in early 2017.”
Gordon Merrylees, Scottish EDGE board member and head of Entrepreneurship at Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest, said: “Scottish EDGE has had a significant impact on Scotland’s economy, with our alumni having generated an additional £45.06m in turnover, secured £44.12 million in additional investment and created 818 jobs. We’re looking forward to continued success as today’s winners join our group of high-achieving alumni.”
Renowned Scottish entrepreneur and philanthropist Sir Tom Hunter said: “It’s a cause that’s long been close to my heart – helping Scottish businesses to start and grow. Scotland’s entrepreneurial talent pool is globally recognised, we need to nurture it in any way that we can to build our economy and to provide the quality jobs that Scottish people deserve.
“Scottish EDGE enables us to identify the innovators of today and the job creators of tomorrow, it is a critical tool as we strive to build a far greater pipeline of high-growth businesses. I congratulate all winners and commend all the entrants for their commitment to building great entrepreneurial businesses.”
The panel of judges was chaired by Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne of Genius Gluten-Free.
Roll of honour
Amiqus Resolution: Handles compliance and onboarding of clients for legal and financial services firms. Amount Awarded: £75,000
Brewgooder Ltd: A social enterprise brewery which donates 100% of its profits to clean water projects around the world. Amount Awarded: £70,000
Care Sourcer Ltd: The first company in the UK to provide a care matching platform enabling people to source care that meets their needs. Amount Awarded: £50,000
Dear Green Ltd: First in Scotland to supply exclusively 100% Speciality Grade coffee. Amount Awarded: £25,000
GM Flow: Offers flow consultancy expertise in the field of test and production separator, gas lift, gas and water injection measurement.  Amount Awarded: £45,000
Kitsch Drinks Ltd: Produces refreshing sodas in innovative flavours like Rhubarb & Thai Basil.  Amount Awarded: £100,000
LMB Enterprise Ltd: Pads that address the global issue of loose fitting shoes. Amount Awarded: £40,000
Property Technology Ltd: Innovative technology which makes viewing and applying for a property easy. Amount Awarded: £50,000
Qpal Limited: A disruptive cashless payments solution for the live events industry. Amount Awarded: £40,000
SignLive Ltd: Software which facilitates communication between deaf and hearing people anywhere, anytime, via an app. Amount Awarded: £45,000
Slim Lizzie Ltd: Slissie – flavoursome electronic anti-snacking device, slimming aid and good eating habit trainer. Amount Awarded: £100,000
Spyglass Innovations Ltd: Looblade – a re-invention of the toilet brush which utilises SwipeClean technology. Amount Awarded: £75,000
SunTech UK Ltd ta eFOLDi:  An innovate concept of a personal vehicle, which can be easily folded to a trolley or suitcase. Amount Awarded: £90,000
Swimbeam Training Ltd: Swimbeam Air Trainer – Europe’s only dry-land swim training bench. Amount Awarded: £40,000
Higgs Edge winners were:
Exnics Ltd: A subsea technology company determined to solve big problems with simple new products with the potential for large scale global commercialisation. Amount Awarded: £150,000
RD Support: RD Support has invested in the development of a graphene layer manufacture process. Amount Awarded: £100,000
Young EDGE winners were:
Staels Design Ltd: WheelAir – the first temperature regulating wheelchair pad alleviating pain points faced by wheelchair users. Amount Awarded: £10,000
Dekko Comics Ltd: Create educational comics which are visually engaging while also being informative. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Pyramid WiFi Ltd: Tiny wifi box providing a simple, inexpensive and lawful way to unlock your internet. Amount Awarded: £10,000

MiAlgae: Utilising nutrient rich wastewater to produce microalgal products for the livestock feed industry. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Rory Hutton Ltd: Menswear accessories label specialising in hand-made ties, bow ties and pocket squares. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Lonely Mountain Skis Ltd: High performance and environmentally friendly skis to suit all aspects of the Alpine skiing market. Amount Awarded: £10,000

The Hebridean Food Company: Create luxury foods using only ingredients from the Hebrides. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Estendio: Present Pal – the first ever presentation support app specific to dyslexic users. Amount Awarded: £10,000

DirectDevitt Comedy Productions & Management CIC: ‘Comedy and confidence’ workshops, using comedy techniques and resources to support disengaged youths.
Amount Awarded: £7,500

Ramadan Legacy Ltd: A mobile app focusing on providing a new learning experience for the holy month of Ramadan. Amount Awarded: £5,000

LoCa Beverages Ltd: Minus 33 – a 33% juniper distilled spirit. A gin, in all but alcohol level. Amount Awarded: £5,000

Phone My Mum Ltd: Treasure – a pirate themed kids bead kit with a safety twist. Amount Awarded: £2,500

WildCard EDGE winners were:
MicroSpray Technologies: On a mission is to revolutionise particle manufacturing for pharmaceutical and research industries. Amount Awarded: £10,000
Airdecks Ltd: An innovative product for the construction industry that aims to eliminate issues associated with scaffolding obstruction. Amount Awarded: £10,000
BioTSptech: A new sensor, used broadly to monitor the health and general characteristics of cells grown ex vivo. Amount Awarded: £10,000
DAT Consulting Ltd: Have invented two systems for the hygiene sector – Sterl Blast (a room system) and Sterl Hand (a hand system used in intensive care settings). Amount Awarded: £10,000

Spark and Rocket Ltd: Aims to market and sell fun, accessible and creative products to enable children to play, create and learn music. Amount Awarded: £10,000

SpeyCardio Ltd: Creators of the Smart Wearable Defibrillator, now developing disposable defibrillator pads which are compatible with the device.
Amount Awarded: £10,000

Nu Blvck Ltd: A fashion accessories brand and e-commerce platform transforming the traditional supply chain. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Wallet.Services (Scotland) Ltd: Simplifies BlockChain in business using a software platform that enables innovation, accelerates projects, and manages risk in development and operations. Amount Awarded: £10,000

Peaches Wax Bar Ltd: Aiming to develop a UK based, quality wax brand. Amount Awarded: £5,000

HakySak Ltd: An online, peer-to-peer marketplace, that connects local people to other trusted members of their community. Amount Awarded: £5,000

Your Book List: A money saving app which directly connects students to the best deals on buying and selling their textbooks. Amount Awarded: £5,000

Sansible Wearables: Offers a combined hardware and software system to improve performance and help prevent injury. Amount Awarded: £5,000

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
  • Two prizes (£150,000 and £100,000) for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics businesses (STEM)
  • Signposting to alternate funding and funders where appropriate.
  • Business Training.
  • Mentoring and support from a mature entrepreneur accessed through the Entrepreneurial Scotland mentoring programme.
  • 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 they 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 the chance to learn from and connect with experts from world renowned organisations such as Microsoft at the Scottish EDGE Final.
To date, Scottish EDGE has made 280 awards totalling over £8 million. This has resulted in the creation of 818 jobs with the winners generating an additional £45.06 million in turnover and securing £44.12 million in additional investment.
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