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Engineering Students Who Participated in the University of the Highlands & Islands Business Ideas Competition Make it to the Final of the Engineers in Business Innovation Competition

Thirty-year-old Matej Papp and twenty-five-year-old Ahmed Nassar, engineering graduates from the University of Aberdeen entered the Business Competition run by the University of the Highlands and the Islands and won the Engineers in Business (EIB) innovation award, qualifying for the EIB Champion of Champions Final. The Final will be hosted by TV presenter Rob Bell at the Royal Academy of Engineering on 22 October 2021.

Matej and Ahmed invented GoSparTM, a portable training solution set to transform the boxing world and will be pitching their innovation against nine other teams of student and graduate innovators in the national final. A total prize pot of £15,000 is up for grabs, providing vital seed money to help the winners develop their innovation. The winners will also receive mentoring from business leaders who are members of the Sainsbury Management Fellows network, plus CV packages from Purple CV and entrepreneurial books from Cambridge University Press.

The competition is sponsored by the registered charity, Engineers in Business Fellowship which champions business education for engineers and supports universities by giving them grants to award prizes to students who develop ground-breaking ideas. The grants enable universities to inspire more engineering and technology students and post-graduates to participate in innovation and entrepreneurship, skills that they take into their careers.  

GoSparTM – A Game-Changing Portable Boxing Ring Set to Change the Way You Train!

GoSpar is a portable boxing ring developed from first-hand experience of a market gap. Matej and Ahmed’s product is easily transportable and lightweight to make training anywhere at any time as simple as it should be. In its packed-away form, it is compact and can fit into the average UK car. As such, boxing personal trainers can now do their sessions outdoors with clients and are not limited to a single location. Boxing gyms with limited space also have the capability to set up GoSpar when needed and pack it away with ease, without giving up premium space.

With a setup time of less than 10 minutes – a vast improvement on the two-person, 25-minute setup of alternatives currently on the market - GoSpar makes things extremely efficient for personal trainers and boxing gyms alike. Market research conducted by Matej’s and Ahmed’s business BoxFluence shows that 82% of gyms and personal trainers believe GoSpar will increase their client bases and enhance their training sessions. 

The Engineers in Business competition is designed to inspire engineers to study business and innovation. Matej said, “Business innovation skills are an extremely valuable asset to have as a student or graduate engineer. Bridging the gap between theory and the real world is where the true rewards are reaped. Business skills allow engineering ideas to be brought to market and fine-tuned in a manner that is forcibly cost-effective. If an engineer practices and hones such a skill, they are capable of turning ideas into reality, which in our view, is the essence of engineering.”

The Awards Presentation Ceremony – 22 October 2021

The live online dragons’ den style competition will be compered by TV presenter, Rob Bell. Competing against nine other teams, Matej Papp and Ahmed Nassar will have six minutes to convince the judges, through their presentation and Q&A session, that they should be crowned a Champion of Champions and take home a cash prize of between £1,500 and £8,500 depending on the award or awards received! Amongst other criteria, the judges will be assessing the positive impact of GoSpar within leisure settings.

The members of the judging panel are:

  • Dr Andy Phillipps, Entrepreneur and early-stage tech investor and venture capitalist
  • Ana Avaliani, Director of Enterprise and Sustainable Development, Royal Academy of Engineering
  • Dr Jeroen Bergmann, Associate Professor of Engineering Science, University of Oxford
  • Serge Taborin, Government Digital Transformation, Amazon Web Services

Matej and Ahmed will be competing for an Engineers in Business Champion of Champions title against nine other teams from Aberystwyth University, University of Nottingham, University of Exeter, Imperial College London, Nottingham Trent University, University of Portsmouth, University of Birmingham, University of Sheffield and the University of York.

Commenting on their progress within the competition Matej said, “Being one of the finalists is a huge achievement for us. It inspires us to continue our journey towards taking our product to market and provides us with a sense of recognition which is invaluable to us at this stage.”

Important Links

Watch BoxFluence’s pitch video