10 successful applicants announced for Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre health tech accelerator

Sheffield Hallam University’s Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) has announced the successful applicants for its 2024 Advanced Wellbeing Accelerator programme, with a total of 10 start-ups and SMEs from across the UK selected to benefit from specialist funding and support, including companies using AI, wearables and algorithms to improve health and wellness.

After seeing a 30 percent increase in applications, which AWRC put down to “the strength of demand for early-stage support amongst healthtech companies across the UK”, the six-month accelerator programme will be providing matched funding from both the University and Barclays Eagle Labs Ecosystem Partnership Programme, as well as guidance from “expert mentors”, R&D support, and “access to world leading facilities and equipment” at the Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park.

Successful applicants include Aspedan, developers of a Bioanalytics Engine “capable of monitoring 165+ biomarkers to provide incentivised, personalised and medically validated health plans through a smartphone app and clinician portal”; BERRI, creators of clinical evaluation tools that identify, support and track children’s psychological needs; FLX Health, using proprietary Intrinsic Biomechanics Model algorithms to improve the way people move in order to manage pain and prevent musculoskeletal disease and injury; and Hero of Health, a company providing Digital Lifestyle Hubs with the aim of increasing GP profitability by building clinically proven activated neighbourhoods to prevent and reverse chronic illness.

There is also Hytro, which “seeks to advance human health and performance through patented blood flow restriction wearables”; Ideabatic, developers of a cooling system designed to enable vaccines to be transported and administered efficiently; Live More Offline, a consultancy using a Digital Culture Diagnostic “to help organisations seeking to improve productivity and retain talent through healthier working cultures” through data-driven insights; Prorizon, a start-up using “bio-psycho-social data to build science-first, AI-enabled, personalised solutions for optimal mental and physical health and performance”; Select Research, who have developed the Body Volume Index (BVI), a digital measurement system and obesity solution that analyses digital images and demographic data; and Simply Connect Solutions, aiming to put social prescribing into the hands of the user via easy access to mental health and wellbeing support services.

Jason Brannan, deputy director of the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre, said: “If we are to truly address the widening gap in health inequalities and productivity across the UK, evidenced clearly in post-industrial Northern economies, we must focus on the prevention of disease and the resilience of people. Advanced wellbeing and physical activity have an important role to play in this, something that became apparent throughout the Covid pandemic and beyond. These companies have an important role to play here and the AWRC Accelerator will support them in bringing their products to market.”

In related news, Innovate UK has opened a FemTech accelerator programme, part of its Global Business Innovation Programme (GBIP), to help UK SMEs to scale globally. The GBIP gives small businesses access to market knowledge, insight, and connections, aiming to ‘open doors’ for SMEs, with each business assigned an innovation and growth specialist to help them get the most out of the programme.