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Cybernetics professor speaks to businesses going for gold – University of Reading

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Cybernetics professor speaks to businesses going for gold

Release Date 29 July 2005

Professor Warwick and Lisa Cowey with a DalekYoung entrepreneurs and small start-up companies showcased their ideas this week at a meeting of the Alchemists network, hosted by the ISMA Centre at the University of Reading. The Alchemists, an exclusive investment network managed by Finance South East (FSE), helps to provide access to early stage funding and high quality mentoring to turn these innovative ideas into the creative engines of the future. Attendees were greeted by a remote controlled Dalek, the creation of Kevin Warwick, Professor of Cybernetics at the University. Professor Warwick's pioneering research into artificial intelligence, control, robotics and cyborgs has involved the neuro-surgical implantation of a device into the nerves of his left arm. Speaking at the event, Dr Sue O'Hare, Technology Transfer Manager at the University, highlighted the fact that innovative businesses need financial and mentoring support if they are to succeed in pushing the boundaries of commerce. "Commercialising new ventures is crucial to the future success of innovative British businesses," she said. "At the University of Reading, we have benefited enormously by working with the private sector, both with spinout and spin-in." The event, which took place on Tuesday 26 July, featured six young enterprises that are currently seeking funding, and business support. These innovative, high-growth ventures were selected from the eight university partners and their associated Enterprise Hubs. Ideas ranged from risk reducing health care devices, reward-based congestion reduction and control of atmospheric carbon emissions. Also speaking at the event, Paul Coleman of Finance South East introduced the ready2invest South East programme (r2ise), aimed at potential angel investors. Mr Coleman said: "r2ise has been designed specifically for new or would-be investors in unquoted companies or for those simply looking to refresh their knowledge. Through a workshop-based approach, incorporating direct experience from practised investors, r2ise provides individuals with the necessary skills and information to make an investment with confidence." End Notes for editors About The Alchemists The Alchemists, managed by Finance South East (FSE), is a community of business mentors, investors and industry representatives who offer resources, including knowledge, people and finance. The network supports the development of technology and knowledge-based businesses emerging from eight partner universities and the SEEDA Enterprise Hubs. About Professor Kevin Warwick Professor Warwick's research involves robotics and he is responsible (with Jim Wyatt) for Cybot, a robot exported around the world as part of a magazine, 'Real Robots'. This has resulted in royalties totalling over £1 million for the University of Reading. His research has been discussed by the US White House Presidential Council on BioEthics, The European Commission FTP and has led to him being widely referenced and featured in academic circles. About Finance South East Finance South East, a not for profit organisation, was established in 2002 by South East of England Development Agency (SEEDA) and the Business Links. FSE exists to provide access to finance and improve the coordination and provision of pre- and post-investment support for ambitious growth companies and entrepreneurs in the South East. Further information about FSE, please contact Zoë Cottrell on 01344 758 543 or For press information, please contact: Glen Goldsmith 2thefore Tel: 01483 811234 Mob: 07812 766 338 Email: Katie King 2thefore Tel: 0208 360 2442 Mob: 07974 161 179 Email:

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