London biotech companies wow the palace

London biotech companies wow the palace

Three London start-ups were among the winners at the Pitch@Palace event yesterday held at St James's Palace by the Duke of York.

Toothbrushes transformed into game controllers and a potential life-saver for babies through breastfeeding are just a few of the biotech businesses showcased at an event led by the Duke of York yesterday (7 March).

The winners included three start-ups from the capital, Doctify, an 'Uber for doctors', JustMilk, a potential life-saver for babies through breastfeeding and MediSieve, the developer of a groundbreaking drug-free malaria treatment.

Fourteen finalists stated their cases to an audience of potential investors and businesspeople at St James's Palace for Andrew's fifth instalment of the Pitch@Palace programme.

They were selected from 42  businesses, which had been whittled down from around 250 applicants from across the UK hoping to take part in the  event designed to connect start-up companies with potential investors and mentors.

Of the biotech theme, Andrew said: "It's a very exciting area of science and discovery that is going on in the United Kingdom, and I'm really pleased to be able to showcase it here at the palace this evening."

JustMilk  innovators Theresa Maier and Rebekah Scheuerle aim to prevent 4.5 million infant deaths around the world each year using a device worn by a mother during breastfeeding which can deliver much-needed drugs to babies.

Cambridge University PhD student Ms Scheuerle said: "We feel like this is a huge privilege to be able to provide a voice to these children who are in need of these medicines, and wouldn't otherwise be able to ask for this."

While JustMilk won on the night, Andrew said the programme is designed to support all 42 businesses which make it through to the bootcamp round.

He said: "They all stand out and it's really difficult. This is also not necessarily a Dragon's Den type approach where we're looking for a winner.

“We're looking to support all 42 to win, and to win big in business."

Are you based in Southern England? Sign up to receive your free BQ Breakfast South when it launches in May.