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Ingenuity supports the creation of start-ups that find innovative and sustainable solutions to tackle the UK’s biggest challenges. Ingenuity works in partnership with industry, education, and communities with lived experience.

The Ingenuity Programme works with under-represented groups, as well as students, academics, and those interested in creating social and environmental impact. Ingenuity and its partners are committed to exploring the big issues society faces, focusing on creating prosperity, building community, improving health and tackling climate change, to help drive the recovery. The programme is delivered via annual Challenge Summits, an online insight and learning platform, a national business plan competition, and an investment readiness programme with significant support.

This year’s Ingenuity Programme was supported by a grant from Engineers in Business Fellowship (EIB). Six prizes were awarded to students from the University of Nottingham, University of Portsmouth, Nottingham Trent University and Loughborough University. The winner of the EIB prize from Loughborough University is featured here.

Winner: In-Veeta - Riccardo Barbieri, Mechanical Engineer; Amir Hessari, Product Design Engineer; and Omar Al Maaytah, Manufacturing Engineer - £1,000 Engineers in Business Prize

In-Veeta is looking to create a smart domestic garden to bring nature back into people’s homes, in order to provide good nutrition at a low cost and a low carbon cost. Innovator Riccardo Barbieri is keen to engage with networking opportunities available through the Engineers in Business Fellowship, and the funding will be crucial for covering some of the initial expenses of prototyping, online infrastructure, app design, and legal advice.

Riccardo said, "The support of Engineers in Business Fellowship will help us develop our idea and company but more importantly build the required infrastructure and important benchmarks for the expansion of the business and offer us the required capital to launch with success our first product. It will also offer our company more reliability and help our brand for future opportunities.”

Positive Feedback

The demand for engineering skills continues to rise, but the demand for engineers to demonstrate a broad range of skills is also growing. In particular, commercial awareness and enterprise skills are becoming more essential to perform well in a fast-changing, competitive market, whether a person is seeking to apply their technical skills through employment, or bringing a new product or service to market through a new business. For those starting in business, the training to methodically test and validate ideas can really give engineers the edge as an entrepreneur.

Pete Hitchings, Incubator Manager, Loughborough University