Prodrive’s RAPID Challenge launches for a second year

Photo shows the EAV which won the 2019 Prodrive's Rapid Challenge
EAV founder Adam Barmby in the EAV Cool e-cargo van

The Rapid Challenge, a competition aimed specifically at entrepreneurs and start-ups developing innovative physical products, is back for a second year.

Launched last year by Prodrive Ventures,  the investment-arm of the world-leading motorsport and advanced technology group based at Banbury, This year the lead partner is TBAT which will offer its expertise in funding innovation through UK & EU Grant Funding and R&D Tax Relief.

The RAPID Challenge is aimed at helping entrepreneurs and early stage businesses commercialise their hardware projects. RAPID stands for “Realising Advanced Products through Innovation and Design”.

The RAPID Challenge partners have collaborated to form a prize package aimed to help realise and accelerate your project. As well as receiving the workshop content, the best projects will share the £50,000 prize package made up of:

  • £5K cash prize
  • An engineering service package from Prodrive
  • An R&D and grant application service package from TBAT Innovation
  • Discounted listing fees on Crowdcube
  • Patent advice services from The IP Asset Partnership
  • An early business legal advice package from Clayden Law

Managing Director of TBAT Innovation Ltd, Matt Symonds, said: “Small businesses with big ideas are a key part of the UK economy and a driver of innovation. Our job to is help these businesses bring their ideas to fruition by accessing the funding they need to take the next steps.

“We’d like to encourage any business that fits the application criteria to apply. This is a great opportunity to receive support and advice from a huge range of industry professionals all in one place.”

Last year e-cargo van manufacturer EAV was named overall winner of The Rapid Challenge. The Bicester-based start-up set off at a blinding pace: teaming up with the UK’s number 1 domestic parcels carrier, DPD, to create an urban delivery vehicle, the P1 e-cargo bike.

The two runners up were

Prodrive challenge Dr Tom Llewellyn-Jones, Dr Michael Dicker and Dr Simon Bates of Actuation LabBristol-based Actuation Lab which wants to replace the piston – a mainstay of the manufacturing industry for hundreds of years.

The company was founded by engineers Dr Tom Llewellyn-Jones, Dr Michael Dicker and Dr Simon Bates who spent seven years working together at the University of Bristol developing high-performance composite structures.

Their invention, the Callimorph, is a single-part actuator which creates movement by morphing when fluid pressure is applied.

Prodrive Challenge Jack Raison and Nick Orme of NjoriNjori, based in London, is developing a piece of smart kitchen tech due to be launched with a crowdsourcing  campaign in May.

The company was founded by design engineers Jack Raison and Nick Orme. Their single-plate multifunctional cooker aims to reduce clutter in domestic kitchens, and help amateur chefs up their game.

Its magnetic dial allows the cook to set a temperature which is then measured with a probe – ensuring food is never under- or over-cooked, or energy wasted. The plate also measures weight, meaning ingredients can be added without the need for scales, and meals cooked by reduction can be measured more accurately.