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Want to get into space? It takes just two hours...
On 21st May, 2015, the UK space sector is coming to Glasgow to help entrepreneurs launch new business ideas that use satellite technology.
13th May, 2015: What do a farming, maritime mapping and travel technology business have in common? They all use 'space entrepreneurs' who have benefited from entering the leading space business competitions.
The European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC) and the Copernicus Masters are designed to transform brilliant ideas that use satellite technology into exciting start-up businesses and new products and services by offering financial investment and expert business support.
On 21st May, the UK competition team will be in Glasgow, at the University of Strathclyde's Technology and Innovation Centre and are inviting budding entrepreneurs and companies to attend an information session about the competitions and prizes, including guidance on how to submit an application along with insights from Steve Lee at Stevenson Astrosat based in Mussleburgh, near Edinburgh, who won a Copernicus Masters Challenge last year.
In 2015, the ESNC is looking for ideas using satellite positioning, navigation and training technology (think GPS) and the Copernicus Masters is looking for ideas in the application of satellite Earth observation imagery and data.
Prizes* include a combination of cash investment, comprehensive business support including Intellectual Property (IP) advice from leading patent and trade mark attorneys Marks & Clerk, technical support from across the European Space sector and access to space datasets.
Dr Malcolm Macdonald, Director of the Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications, which is hosting the event, said: "The competitions are a great opportunity for entrepreneurs to connect with the Space sector and get the support they need to transform an idea into a business. It takes about two hours to complete an application, you don't need a fully formed business plan and we're here to help guide you through the process.
The information session will also include an introduction to IP for business from Michael Street, Patent Attorney at Marks & Clerk and participants can sign up for 1-to-1 session on the day to discuss their idea in confidence with the competition team or receive business or IP advice.
Still need persuading? They take inspiration from previous winner Peter Lilley, Director of iGeolise who won the UK leg of the ESWC in 2012 for their innovative travel time platform (www.gettraveltime.com) that turns distance itno time. iGeolise won their first major corporate client, a larger estate agency and property services firm on the back of the competition publicity and two years later the business reach the £1million turnover mark.
"If someone's got two hours free, they should enter the competition...and frankly, if they haven't got two hours free, they should make two hours. It will transform their business" says Peter.