EIE13 attracts biggest ever congregation of investors

17 May 2013

Over 130 investors gathered in Edinburgh last week for the biggest investor showcase event ever to be staged in Scotland.

Engage Invest Exploit, a concept created by Informatics Ventures, doubled in size this year with the input of partners Edinburgh Bioquarter and the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation.

The scrum of investors gathered to see live pitches and exhibitions from 60 high tech, bio-tech and cleantech/low carbon companies, all looking to catch the eye of the investment community.

ECCI supported 15 companies to showcase at the event, including 5 who pitched live to a panel of investors in front of the event audience. 

Celtic Renewables, a company that produces biofuel from whisky by-product (represented by CEO Mark Simmers), won the Pitch of the Day competition and the coveted trophy. See Mark mid-pitch on the right.

Our congratulations go to Celtic Renewables and all the other companies who pitched live:

Trident Energy: a low cost, high reliability linear generator that converts the power of the ocean directly into electricity.
Sunamp: a high performance heat storage & processing company for low to zero-carbon heating.
Global Surface Intelligence: provides intelligent environmental data services to help organisations reduce costs and monitor their environmental impacts.
iPower: addressing climate change/fuel-poverty by introducing the BlueGen fuel-cell to the UK.
Celtic Renewables: an innovative and award-winning start-up company formed to commercialise a process for producing a superior next generation biofuel (and other high value sustainable products) from the by-products of biological industries.

Look out for updates from them and the other exhibitors later in the year.

Stop moaning and innovate

Key note speaker Tom Hunter caught the imagination of the audience and assembled press with a rousing call to arms to Scottish innovators and entrepreneurs to be at the forefront of economic growth.

Sir Tom Hunter told Scotland’s biggest-ever gathering of start-ups and investors that collaboration among agencies was working and that they should celebrate the opportunities the country offered. The Scottish tycoon urged them to ignore those who claimed there was too little support or finance for young companies. “I just do not buy it,” he said.

“We have fantastic support networks. Four of our universities are in the top 200 globally and for a country of five million people we are punching above our weight. So don’t moan about it.”

Hunter said the small firms represented at the event were his “heroes”, providing the lifeblood of the economy, and he urged them not to fear failure but to embrace opportunity. “Perhaps one day we will have our own Facebook or Google. Why not?” he said. “I believe we are getting the climate right for start up businesses. This event today is an example: bringing together three organisations. We also have the government listening to business. There is public and private collaboration.”