- Eight start-ups, focusing on smart transport solutions, have joined the new Intelligent Mobility (IM) Accelerator, based in Milton Keynes
- Companies selected include a start-up that uses AI and machine learning to revolutionise bus timetables, and another that predicts driver fatigue
- The start-ups will now benefit from expert mentoring and acceleration from founding partners Wayra UK and Transport Systems Catapult, as well as supporters Network Rail and Thoughtworks Ventures
Eight start-ups, focusing on smart transport solutions, make up the first cohort of companies joining the new Intelligent Mobility (IM) Accelerator programme, based in Milton Keynes.
The companies, who are all looking to solve problems within the transport sector, will now benefit from a unique six-month support programme that will help them accelerate their growth plans and provide the transport solutions of tomorrow.
From December, they will receive office space, coaching, mentoring, acceleration services, and access to the networks of the programme partners – Transport Systems Catapult (TSC), and Wayra UK, part of Telefónica Open Future_.
Those networks include investors, government agencies, customers, large corporates and universities, as well as opportunities to work with the TSC’s world-leading capability team, featuring specialists in Systems Engineering, Data Science, AI and Modelling and Visualisation, and Telefónica’s Smart Steps initiative.
The programme has also attracted the sponsorship of global technology consultancy ThoughtWorks and national railway infrastructure operator Network Rail, who will both provide support to start-ups at the Accelerator, including mentoring, coaching, and access to their high-level expertise and networks.
Gary Stewart, Director of Wayra UK and Telefónica Open Future_ (UK), said: “Transportation is the bane of many people’s daily lives, and it doesn’t have to be that way. We were blown away by the creativity and calibre of the applicants, and I have every confidence that the customer-focused, data-driven start-ups we have selected will make transport a little less painful for all of us.”
Alex Weedon, TSC Director of Commercial, said: “We are extremely excited to see the first cohort of start-ups arriving at our Innovation Centre to join the IM Accelerator. The UK has a long history of innovation and the quality of applicants we saw for the accelerator is proof positive that the spark is still alive and well today.
“Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, Big Data and automated technologies are opening up a whole world of new opportunities to make smarter, greener more sustainable transport which is better for everyone. We hope many of these start-ups will end up leading the way to this bright future.”
The companies selected to join the programme include:
- Cityswifter – provides big data and predictive analytics tools to transport companies, enabling the dynamic scheduling and optimisation of urban bus networks
- Conigital – transport infrastructure integrators developing full-stack driverless vehicle platforms and related intelligent mobility solutions for high traffic destinations
- Drivernet – a smart logistics network that connects any driver to any customer or site in swift, safe, sustainable ways
- GoMetro – a smart transport company that creates transport technology systems with a specific focus on delivering mobility as a flexible service
- Safr – predicts driver fatigue to prevent accidents, save lives, and save money
- Synaptiv – a platform that creates services able to be monetised from the data generated by sensors embedded on vehicles
- Valerann – An economic, plug-and-play, road management system that answers all the needs of roads operators today, while equipping roads to support and monitor autonomous vehicles
- Zeelo – is an on-demand coach service that allows users to travel direct, when they need to
The IM Accelerator programme focuses on Intelligent Mobility, including areas such as Connected and Autonomous Vehicles, Connected Infrastructure, Customer Experience and Transport Data and Analysis.
Its goal is to develop companies who will create solutions for the most pressing transport problems facing the world today, improving day-to-day life for millions of travellers while creating new UK-based industry leaders in a £900bn global transport systems market.
The new programme is a partnership between Transport Systems Catapult and Wayra UK, the world-leading start-up accelerator that is part of Telefónica Open Future_. Since 2012, Wayra UK has supported more than 160 British and Irish start-ups in other industries, helping them raise approximately $150m in third-party funding. Transport Systems Catapult is the UK’s innovation centre for ‘Intelligent Mobility’ and the organisation behind the UK’s first public trial of an autonomous vehicle.
Notes to editors
Intelligent Mobility uses new and emerging technologies to create a smarter, greener, safer and more efficient movement of people and goods around the world.
Intelligent Mobility will drive a radical overhaul of transport systems to redefine the future of transport. The UK is ideally positioned to take advantage and be at the forefront of a momentous new global market, which is conservatively forecast to treble in worth to £900 billion per annum by 2025.
About Transport Systems Catapult
The Transport Systems Catapult is the UK’s technology and innovation centre for Intelligent Mobility, harnessing emerging technologies to improve the movement of people and goods around the world. We are here to support business growth, increase the UK’s share of the global Intelligent Mobility market, and attract investment – creating jobs and generating long-term economic growth.
We will help sell UK capability on the global stage, while also promoting the UK as a superb test bed for the transportation industry. With a clear emphasis on collaboration, we are bringing together diverse organisations across different modes of transport, breaking down barriers and providing a unique platform for meeting the world’s most pressing transport challenges.
The Transport Systems Catapult is one of an elite network of not-for-profit technology and innovation centres established and overseen by the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK. For more information, please visit www.ts.catapult.org.uk
Wayra UK is part of Telefónica Open Future_, the open innovation programme that integrates the different initiatives of the whole Telefónica Group related to entrepreneurship and innovation.
Wayra UK gives direct funding, acceleration and pre-acceleration services (such as co-working space, connectivity services, mentoring, access to Wayra UK’s network and knowhow, training in entrepreneurship and business skills) to selected start-ups. Since its launch in 2012, Wayra UK start-ups have raised approximately $150m in third-party investment.
Wayra UK has partnered with some of the world’s leading organisations to invest in a number of verticals that help generate growth, create positive societal impact and fuel innovation across a number of industries.
These include Velocity Health with Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited (MSD), a global healthcare company transforming healthcare; Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), through the GCHQ Cyber Accelerator; our Wayra Fair By Design programme, which seeks to alleviate the poverty premium; and the Intelligent Mobility Accelerator, a partnership with the Transport Systems Catapult.
Wayra UK also works alongside local and regional partners to reinvigorate entrepreneurial ecosystems, energise local economies and democratise entrepreneurship.
Telefónica Open Future_
Telefónica Open Future_ is Telefónica´s global platform designed to connect the company to entrepreneurs, start-ups, investors and public and private partners around the world to capture innovation and business opportunities. Its goal is to support talent at all stages of growth through a comprehensive model for acceleration that is designed to connect talent with organisations, investors and companies.
The programme incorporates all of Telefónica Group’s open innovation, entrepreneurship and investment initiatives (Think Big, Talentum, Crowdworking, Wayra, Amérigo and Telefónica Ventures) through a global network that is open to participation by external partners that wish to develop their own entrepreneurial and investment strategies, and connect to large corporates.
To date, more than 51,000 proposals have been analysed, over 1,600 start-ups have been accelerated, and over 700 invested in. Telefónica Open Future_ is present in 17 countries and has committed to investment, with its partners, a total of 445 million euros.
More info: https://www.openfuture.org/en
As a global leader in Agile software delivery, ThoughtWorks has been helping organisations transform into digital businesses for over 25 years. To address the rise of digital ecosystems, we have created ThoughtWorks Ventures to help organisations take global megatrends from theory to strategic implementation, using technology.
Our goal is to advance social and economic growth on a global scale, by increasing cross-industry and country collaboration. As technology start-ups play a vital role in promoting large-scale positive change, we are on a mission to help inspirational tech start-ups increase their survival chances.
Thoughtworks contact: Katy Mendes, e: firstname.lastname@example.org, tel: +44 7503 544171
Transport Systems Catapult Media Contacts:
Simon White, e: email@example.com, tel: +44 7496 437944
Stephen Lynn, e: Stephen.firstname.lastname@example.org, tel: +44 7496 437907
Norval Scott, Head of PR and Communications, Wayra UK and Telefónica Open Future_ (UK): e: email@example.com m: +44 (0) 7860 760 841