Finance Hunter Ruthven · 2 September 2015
Advice on getting a grant to fund technological innovation
Warren Fauvel founded Nudjed asa personalised online health and wellbeing platform aimed at busy professionals and organisations. The technologymeasures an organisation’s overall health and then tailors advice on an individual level to ensure the wellbeing of employees. Havingreceived early grant support from the Welsh government’s Digital Development Fund it then securedfurther rounds of investment totalling more than 275, 000. To find out more, Business Advice quizzed Fauvel on securing financial support in the form of grant finance and seed funding in order to accelerate the growth of a tech startup. (1) Please tell us a little about your business? Nudjed was founded just over two years ago to help organisations create better health and wellness programs. Our personalised online health and wellbeing platform is aimed at busy professionals and organisations, in which wemeasure an organisation’s overall health using our technology and then tailor advice on an individual level to ensure the wellbeing of employees. We currently employ eight people and sell to a host of well-known organisations from the NHS to GoCompare. (2) What led to you applying for grant funding? We applied for funding to help us develop our data analysis tools, which we call “The Algorithim of You”. This tool helps us to understand what people want to do about their health and is unique compared tothe rest of the market, who focus on an individual’s weight or how many steps theyve completed in a day. (3) Was it hard to find right grant funding to fit your business? Although it wasn’t necessarily hard to find, the criteria for applying for a grant often was not clear. This meant we had to invest the time into doing a little digging to see if we met the criteria and more importantly, if we even wanted the grant on offer. (4) What went into the process of applying for the grant was it a time-consuming process? This depends on how you term time-consuming. For “freemoney” the process was quite’simple, however, it wasn’t as easy as it could have been. As such we found that the administration burden was higher than we expected. We submitted a project proposal and cash flow projections, which were both almost obsolete before submission. Our fund managers understood this though and have been accommodating. (5) What will the finance allow you to do now? Most grants are matchfunded, in arrears. So the reality is, not a lot straight away. The grant we took helped us to invest infuture developments of the product. But it was important we had the working capital to cover that cash flow first.
ABOUT THE EXPERTHunter Ruthven
Hunter Ruthven was previously editor of Business Advice. He was also the editor of Real Business, the UK's most-read website for entrepreneurs and business leaders at the helm of growing SMEs.