04/06/2018

The Achievements of INDUSTRY4.UK

Following the news that Industry4 Ltd, trading as INDUSTRY4.UK, will be wound down on financial grounds, we can now look back and take note of what the Company achieved over the past 18 months.

The Company was catapulted thanks to being part of the First Bourne Accelerator in Bournemouth but it would be fair to say we were making it up as we went along as there were lots of presumptions and relationships with industry partners we had to confirm before we could be confident with our direction. The final pitch of the Accelerator, which was only two months in, can only be described as an car crash performance, however we knew we weren't ready and we weren't prepared to be distracted by playing the 'game' of pleasing others. Our focus was to set the foundations of the Company which we knew was a slow-grow task. Now looking back, over a short period of time, all our presumptions have been confirmed. 

Partner Relationships

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Market Discovery

  • MES: iTAC, Mentor Graphics, Aegis Software, Lighthouse Systems
  • Platforms: Line View Solutions, ThingTrax, Wonderware, Iconics, Senseye, Valuechain
  • Systems integrators: Solutions PT
  • Standards: OMLHermes, IPC CFX

Media Interviews

Events & Shows

  • Industry 4.0 Summit, Manchester
  • Smart Factory Expo, Liverpool
  • Smart IoT London, Excel
  • IoT Speed Networking, Manchester
  • Things Connected, Bournemouth
  • Blakell Europlacer Technology Open Day, Upton
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Software Development

  • MultiPlug Extension for Brainboxes I/O hardware
  • Website and Social Media

Key People

Confirmed Startup Presumptions

  • The industry would be welcoming to Startups
  • Use of .Net Framework - Partner developers are using C++/C#
  • A baseline product price would be around £500
  • The product could run on all platforms including the RasPi

Mentorship

  • Andrew Walker - "A software business won't make any revenue within 2 years" 
  • Lynn Coleman - "You are creating a traditional business"

Funding & Finance

  • Seed Investment
    = 6 months product development runway & 12 Months operational runway.
  • Bootstrapped thereon
  • Biggest cost being Product Development of a MVP
  • To date, a small team has been ideal, but now is the time to ramp up the team size to accelerate development.
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Funding Failure
  • Innovate UK - Needed us to collaborate with one other customer/partner to validate our product. We were advised by many that the administration would be too cumbersome for us at this time.
  • Dorset Growth Hub - Declined to issue a grant as no revenue was being generated and they had no history of supporting startup businesses. This was decided even though a partner was happy to match fund a project. It was clear that unfortunately they didn't understand our business domain.

    Fundraising is generally a frustrating activity due to the level of preparation that is needed, that ultimately may be wasted if unsuccessful. This task has to be seen as a full time job and therefore can be distracting for any business that has few resources or time. We therefore chose to bootstrap the business until we could reach a stage where we can validate our product.
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David Graham

David was a Software Architect at INDUSTRY4.UK