How to win investment in just a minute? Our CyberASAP teams are put to the test
Posted on 29/11/2019
Now in its third year the Cyber Security Academic Startup Accelerator Programme (CyberASAP) exists to help commercialise academic ideas in the cyber security space. That commercialisation process is not just about the quality of the idea. One of the most critical factors in the journey from academia to the market is the ability to communicate the unique benefits – both in terms of marketability and potential profitability – of that idea. First and foremost, that communication needs to find traction amongst a key group of individuals: investors.
CyberASAP has already provided this year’s cohort – now whittled down to the final 13 teams – with a range of workshops, bootcamps and one-to-one training sessions to help them hone the varied skills necessary to develop their ideas and take them to market. This week sees the cohort meet investors and commercial insight experts as the CyberASAP programme team draws on its network of business mentors and investors (VCs and Angels) to provide further expert input.
In a day of one-minute pitches and commercial insights, the cohort will benefit from one-to-one coaching and have a chance to test how compelling their propositions are. One of the challenges they have faced is distilling those propositions into just one-sentence, as follows:
- TAPCHA: Online fraud prevention, CAPTCHA reinvented for everyone & every device. (University of Bournemouth)
- Draconia / CTLR: A cost-effective, dedicated bolt-on service for advanced threat detection. (University of Bournemouth)
- The Privacy Tool: privacy risk assessment made simple (University of Bournemouth)
- GuardKeeper: advanced authentication and secure connections in hostile environments (Coventry University)
- PriSAT: Software engineering compliance tools for privacy-by-design (University of Glasgow)
- INSURE: A portable wireless intrusion prevention systems for smartphones and tablets. (De Montfort University)
- BLEMAP: Bluetooth security and vulnerability insight [in a blink]. (Royal Holloway University of London)
- Prinesec: Creating causality chains to empower predictive threat detection. (Royal Holloway University of London)
- BioGenerate: Harnessing the body’s biological signals to efficiently generate unique cryptographic keys. (University of Gloucestershire)
- Verifiable Credentials: Replacing all credentials with W3C standardised, cryptographically-secured, electronic credentials. (University of Kent)
- PhishAR: Phish-proofing user authentication by harnessing the power of AI and AR. University of Oxford
- SPYDERISK: Automated risk assessment for ISO 27001 certification. (University of Southampton)
- VACCYNE: Automated safeguarding software shielding children and vulnerable adults from harmful internet content and communications. (University of Wolverhampton)
One of the invited attendees at the Meet the Investors day was Chris Kilroy, Investment Manager, Mercia Asset Management PLC who commented: “The CyberASAP “Meet The Investor Day” is a great opportunity for investors to provide advice and support to researchers from a broad range of universities as they start to commercialise their cyber security research.
Mercia has invested in a significant number of university spin-outs due to the partnerships that we have established with 19 universities across the United Kingdom. We’re looking forward to using our experience in funding and supporting university spin-outs to help advise the researchers and their teams on their next steps after the CyberASAP programme.”
Robin Kennedy from the Knowledge Transfer Network which delivers the programme, added “As CyberASAP builds towards its crescendo with our Demo Day in February, it is exciting to see how the projects, and the teams, have developed over the course of the programme. Meet the Investors day is another significant stepping stone on the path towards commercialisation success”.
*CyberASAP is funded by the UK Government Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in partnership with the Knowledge Transfer Network and Innovate UK.