Razorbill Instruments placed third in Scotland's foremost business competition beating off competition from 111 other candidates and securing themselves cash and in-kind support to contribute towards their seed funding.
The technology behind the company, and for which they won the award, is a nanopositioner – a device which can move with minute detail, especially useful in the manufacturing of microchips, and in physics and biomedical research.
Alex Ward explained:
“We were up against some really strong opposition so were absolutely thrilled to place third. The prize money will offer us a chance to develop our prototype into a product that will be a useful tool to wide range of nanotechnologies.
“It will be a nano-'tractor', a robust and versatile tool used in a wide range of nano-technologies, and can move a sample with precision smaller than a thousandth of the width of a human hair.
“On top of the cash prize, the lawyer and accountancy services will be hugely useful as we get the company on its feet.”
Professor Malcolm MacLeod, Vice Principal Enterprise and Engagement at the University of St Andrews said:
"This is a fantastic achievement and we wish Alex and his colleagues well in developing Razorbill. We hope that this will be the first of many such success stories in engaging Enterprise at St Andrews."
The award was presented at a gala dinner at Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University last week, which included an address from the Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission, Professor Anne Glover CBE.
Professor Glover said:
“Yet again, the spirit of academic innovation and enterprise emanating from the university campuses in Scotland reinforces how students and academic staff are engaged with Converge Challenge.
“For five years now, Converge has been a shining beacon of academic flair and entrepreneurship, giving participants an opportunity to crystallise their research and inventions.”
Razorbill Instruments was one of 111 entrants from across Scotland to apply for the competition, undergoing a rigorous selection process including business plans, a number of pitches, and a Dragon’s Den style Q&A with a panel of judges.