£40m fund on offer for innovators and entrepreneurs at Hampshire business conference

INNOVATORS and entrepreneurs are being urged to put forward their ideas at an annual conference to bid for a share of £40m.

Tuesday, 5th March 2019, 8:42 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th March 2019, 9:45 am
Connell McLaughiln, CEO of Route Reports and Chris Allington, Chair of Venturefest South.

Venturefest South 2019 has announced an additional fund of £40m pledged by Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) for innovators attending its event, on March 29 at the Ageas Bowl. 

Venturefest South showcases latest technology at its interactive one-day event which features talks, seminars and workshops and investor pitching session. 

Gary Aitkenhead, Dstl chief executive said: ‘Venturefest South is a terrific opportunity to meet potential suppliers and explore ways we can work together.

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Venturefest South

‘We’re especially interested in companies which have not traditionally worked in defence but have specialist expertise and fresh ideas.’ 

Chris Allington, chair of Venturefest South said: ‘This £40m fund from Dstl represents a major addition to the already substantial range of existing opportunities available for innovators and investors at the event.’ 

Last year Connell McLaughlin, then a first-year Aeronautics and Astronautics student at the University of Southampton, pitched his new application, Route Reports, to several investors. Four investors each pledged £100,000 towards his business.

Connell said: ‘Venturefest South was great and since then Route Reports has gone from strength to strength - the company is now based in San Francisco with a valuation of $2 million.

Venturefest South

‘Venturefest South was a really useful event for both pitching and making contacts and I urge anyone with an innovative product, service or even an idea to attend the event, you can’t help but be inspired to do great things.’ 

For more go to venturefestsouth.co.uk.