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Creativeworks London announce awardees of BOOST award
Three creative businesses each awarded £25,000 boost from new funding initiative which teams academics with SMEs.
An app that creates bespoke textiles from the audio patterns in music, an innovative digital platform for charity donations and a ‘connected’ wrist band to assess the economic impact of arts festivals on the local high street were the winners at last night’s Creativeworks London first BOOST Awards.
Three collaborative teams of SMEs and academics were awarded £25,000 each at last night’s BOOST Awards, a major new funding initiative from Creativeworks London, an extensive hub of London-based universities, colleges, museums, libraries and archives dedicated to bringing together the capital’s creative industries with its research community.
Ten collaborative teams took part in a competitive ‘Dragon’s Den’ style daylong pitch process yesterday, 3 March 2015. The creative businesses and academic researchers were invited to individually pitch their ideas to a judging panel of seven industry experts including Chris Moore, UKTI, Wendy Malem, London College of Fashion and Hiten Thakrar, School of Creative Start Ups.
The winners, who were announced last night at a special award ceremony in the City, are:
Fantasy High Street & Kings College London
Fantasy High Street is an arts organisation which creates imaginative interactive cultural events to engage local communities with their local high street. In collaboration with Dr Roberta Comunian, lecturer in cultural and creative industries, Kings College London, Fantasy High Street will assess the economic impact of arts and cultural activities on town centres by bringing arts festivals, businesses and communities together in innovative, magical and playful ways. Using RFID technology set into festival style wristbands, wearers will be able to interact directly with public art installations and activate special offers from local businesses with the aim of enhancing residents’ experience of arts festivals whilst attracting shoppers back to the high street.
Beatwoven and Queen Mary University of London
Multi-award winning and pioneering textiles label Beatwoven has already achieved extraordinary success using audio technology to reveal the hidden geometric patterns created by sound and music and fusing them with traditional weaving patterns to create luxurious woven fabrics. Working with design studio KickForward and Dr Noam Shemtov, senior lecturer in intellectual property and technology law at Queen Mary University of London, Beatwoven founder Nadia-Anne Ricketts will develop an app that allows customers to upload their own music choices and create bespoke patterns.
Heart n Soul and Goldsmiths, University of London
Heart n Soul is an award-winning creative arts charity, which provides creative spaces for disabled and non-disabled artists and participants to come together to develop and share talents and ideas. In collaboration with Steph Horak, new media artist and special project co-ordinator, Goldsmiths University, they will create an innovative platform for giving, a hybrid donation and media tool allowing individuals to donate directly to the charity and in return receive music, videos, comic books and art. In this way the new platform will both help uncover new audiences for their artists and at the same time create a compelling new revenue stream, which could be shared with other SMEs in the creative economy.
Suzie Leighton, Creativeworks London Head of Knowledge Exchange Programme said,
“The three projects awarded BOOST funding demonstrate the depth of talent, commitment and tenacity present within the creative industries, and the huge contribution they make to the cultural, social and economic life of the UK. Although we were able to make only three awards, it was both inspiring and humbling to see the talent, drive and creativity demonstrated by the participating projects, and exciting to see what can and has been achieved when this is partnered with the excellent research available within Creativeworks London.”
Chris Moore, UKTI, said, “I was very impressed by the quality of the pitches which were all of a high standard. We chose three projects that have high growth potential and build on the strengths of their existing Creativeworks London projects. It’s a shame we could only fund three projects as there were a number of strong contenders.”
Wendy Malem, London College of Fashion said, “The Creative BOOST event was a testament to what can be achieved when a University expert and a small business partner up and a joint plan emerges. The panel selected three projects last night who will receive further funding to enable them to take their concept to the next level, but to be honest, we could have selected nearly all of them as viable and developing SME entrepreneurs!”
Steve Legg, IBM said “I’d like to offer my congratulations to the winning applicants who demonstrated the originality and value of their proposals together with clear capability to deliver their vision. I look forward to seeing more news of their success…participating in the judging panel I was impressed by the quality of the applications and it was clear that the benefit of the competition was not limited to the winners as the application process had clearly helped all of the participants to focus their proposals.”
BOOST is a new follow on award available to SMEs and researchers who have previously benefited from Creativeworks London and London Creative and Digital Fusion funding, to provide crucial support in further developing and/or commercialising their ideas through an additional collaborative research project that will have a positive impact on London’s Creative Economy.
The next competitive round of Creativeworks London BOOST will take place in June, date to be announced shortly.
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