Innovative prosthetic technology company wins first Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Award

The University of Strathclyde has announced the first winner of an entrepreneurship award created with the largest donation in University history.

PCAD has been named the winner of the first Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Award, for its work on devices for lower limb prostheses.

The £10,000 prize was announced as the first in a series of awards designed to support emerging entrepreneurs in Strathclyde.

The Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Awards program was created as a significant part of a £50million donation to Strathclyde by the Charitable organisation of alumnus, entrepreneur and philanthropist Dr. Charles Huang PhD, who supports the university’s work to transform lives, support the economy and foster entrepreneurship.

The award is given in memory of the late Professor Stephen Young, former Head of Marketing at Strathclyde and supervisor and mentor to Dr Huang during his doctoral studies.

The award was announced at the biennial Inspire 100 ceremony hosted by Strathclyde Inspire, the University’s flagship entrepreneurship program which provides entrepreneurial training and opportunities for every student, staff member and alumnus.

The entrepreneurs presented at the online event to an audience of experienced entrepreneurs, supporters and investors, with the aim of obtaining cash prizes as well as advice and support.

Significant improvement

PCAD™ (Pressurized Computer Aided Design) technology was designed to bring a significant improvement to the way lower limb prostheses are fitted, by combining die-casting technology with the advanced digitization of computer-aided design. technology for the first time.

The company was set up by Dr Anthony McGarry, a senior researcher in Strathclyde’s Department of Biomedical Engineering.

Professor Sir Jim McDonald, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Strathclyde, said: “The gift from the Charles Huang Foundation is already having a profound impact on the already strong culture of entrepreneurship in Strathclyde. The support and guidance we provide to new and existing entrepreneurs has benefited immensely from this donation.

“One of the main objectives of the Charles Huang Foundation is to foster entrepreneurial skills and bold ideas with a global vision. PCAD produces technology capable of making a positive difference in the lives of many people and is an ideal example of this.

“PCAD is a worthy first recipient of the Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Award and we congratulate them on their success.”

Dr Huang said: “We are delighted that the first Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Award has been presented. This shows that this donation has a significant impact on Strathclyde, not only for the good of the University but for the global community.

“We also congratulate Dr. McGarry for receiving the award; his groundbreaking work will improve the use of prostheses and address an urgent need for people around the world. We look forward to many more winning the award for equally valuable entrepreneurial spirit. »

Dr McGarry said: “We are absolutely delighted to have received the Stephen Young Entrepreneurship Award for PCAD.

“There are a growing number of amputees, especially in low- and middle-income countries. The World Health Organization estimates that between 35 and 40 million people currently need prosthetics or orthotics services, with only one in 10 people accessing these services due to a shortage of clinicians and services, particularly in Asia and Africa.

“Current methods of prosthetic fitting are highly dependent on the skill of the clinician and can result in inconsistent socket fit, causing pain or skin damage. previously untapped markets, improving fit and quality of life for prosthetic users.

“Initially, the project will redesign a prototype suitable for testing in a clinical environment and the funding will be used to undertake an independent gap analysis prior to redesign.”

Gillian Fleming, co-founder and managing director of angel investment group Mint Ventures, and Scottish representative of venture capital firm Kero Developments, was on the judging panel. She said: “It was encouraging to see that all of the founders had thought about the impact their business would have on the potential to make the world a better place.

“PCAD really stood out for me as it was clear that global social impact was running through the veins of the company and they detailed how they intend to democratize prosthetic manufacturing to enable more facilities. small and affordable in the world’s poorest countries.”

PCAD was supported by business mentor David Bowie.

Four other Strathclyde start-ups are also set to receive funding under the new awards scheme:

  • &I Technologies, a digital health company with an AI-based app that understands and prioritizes an individual’s response to stress,
  • Metacarpal, a prosthetics company producing upper limb prostheses designed for better function, cost and aesthetics,
  • Querca, which provides a range of professional services, including business development, and is the leading online platform for quantum training and resourcing,
  • Paperflute, which produces recyclable paper children’s playhouses.

Each of the companies participates in the Strathclyde Inspire Investor Loan Accelerator, which helps accelerate opportunities through the provision of tailored advice, funding and training opportunities.

In addition to the Entrepreneurship Awards, Dr Huang’s donation will support the construction of a new building, which will bear his name, in the Strathclyde Technology and Innovation Zone with the Glasgow City Innovation District, and the establishment of the Stephen Young Institute for International Business and The Stephen Young Global Leaders Fellowship Program.

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