Finalists Unveiled for Merseyside Innovation Awards 2014

A trio of companies have been named as the finalists for the 2014 Merseyside Innovation Awards. The three, who were selected by a cross-section of the business community, will now go head-to-head at a prestigious event next month to decide the overall winner.

A panel of judges drew up a shortlist of six from the entries with three businesses going through to the final.

MIA Logo 2014

The finalists are supercar developer Briggs Automotive Company (BAC); Pulmorphix, a Liverpool John Moores University-spin out which has developed a 'lung biosimulator' to move forward drug testing; and recycling business Ultromex.

BAC, which moved to Speke from Holmes Chapel last year, is the creator of road legal single-seat sports car the BAC Mono. The car, which has a £110,000 price tag, has a top speed of 170mph and can go from 0 to 60mph in 2.8 seconds.

Sixty jobs were created by the move and manufacturing capacity is set to be increased to 100 cars per year by 2015.

The second finalist is Pulmorphix, a spin-out which has developed a device that replicates the conditions deep in the human lung.

The company's invention will give drug developers a reliable way of understanding how drugs will behave when inhaled so that more medicines can be produced in powder form. This can benefit countries where refrigeration is an issue. It recently secured £125,000 on crowdfunding website Crowdcube.  Pulmorphix will also be showcased by Liverpool John Moores University at the forthcoming 'Innovators' Day: Innovate, Protect & Prosper" which takes place at Liverpool Central Library on 16 July 2014.

Ultromex, a Bromborough-based company has designed a chemical process to help with the recycling of cathode ray tubes from old televisions, is the third finalist. Its innovation removes the harmful byproducts traditional methods create and processes for the recycling of flatscreen TVs and computer motherboards are now in development.

The trio will now present to a judging panel which includes BBC Radio Merseyside presenter Linda McDermott; BBC North West Tonight anchorman Roger Johnson; Mike Houghton, divisional director of Siemens Industry; and Neville Freeman, creator of last year's winner Nanoflex.

The final will take place at the Crowne Place Hotel in Liverpool on 10 July.

MIA founder Brian McCann, partner and director of MC Vanguard Corporate Finance, hailed the standard of this year's entries. "We have had so many high quality entries across a wide range of commercial applications," he said.

"From medical research tools to websites which offer a new way to engage with music to industrial machines which could revolutionise their respective fields of work.

"Never have we had such a diversity and volume of good, commercially viable innovations to choose from and choosing between them has been difficult."

MC Vanguard is once again proud to support the ceremony together with BBC Radio Merseyside, Brabners, Insider Media, Kenyon Fraser, Unilever, Liverpool Chamber of Commerce, Liverpool LEP, NatWest, University of Liverpool Management School, Village Software, WP Thompson, C-Tech Innovation, Trustech Smart Healthcare Ventures and the North West Fund.

This story first appeared in Insider North West and can be read here.


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