We caught up with Duodrive ahead of them showcasing their innovation at Venturefest South to discuss how they've used developments from the world of aerospace and F1 motorsport for their propulsion system.
Describe your business in no more than 100 words
The Duodrive mission is to make its CRP Propulsion system far more accessible for installation on boats with inboard engines. In addition to substantial fuel reduction, Duodrive CRPs offer significant benefits including better thrust, lower noise & reduced vibration as well as minimum maintenance. In particular the company has looked to bring technological developments from aerospace and F1 motorsport to its research and development of the innovative Duodrivetrain™ for marine craft.
What prompted you to enter the Innovation Zone? Describe the innovation that you’ve entered with.
To help spread the message about the real potential for carbon reduction in marine and the rising level of pollution from boats. To raise the profile of the Duodrivetrain™ solution which demonstrates that Britain still can do “real engineering”... to see it one has to touch it! The elements which have come together during a hectic year of 2016 are nothing short of amazing. What was purely a dream in my head at the start of the year became a reality within 6 months – in fact the reality was even better than the dream as the possibilities kept on coming as we evolved the basic idea.
How would you describe that to a novice?
A novice to ‘innovation’? Try to find a supportive team, discuss your idea (not anyone else’s) and see that through as firmly as possible. All credit is due to the professionals who helped Duodrive.
What are the biggest challenges you face?
After the ‘highs’ of winning awards, the reality of bringing such an idea forwards to start to build a company and to find those first customers. Money – always money and keeping a handle on the expenditure so it always goes to the right place.
What are your biggest professional achievements to date?
Winning the two top awards at Seawork 2016 - the “Spirit of Innovation” Showcase Trophy and overall Show ‘Propulsion Category Winner’ with Duodrivetrain™
How do you feel about showcasing to potentially hundreds of people at Venturefest South?
Always nervous about judging how to get & keep the attention of the crowd but with a confidence in the innovation & novelty of the product plus the hope that some will ‘get-the-message’.
What are you hoping to get out of attending Venturefest South?
Nothing – that way anything we do achieve will be a ‘result’. It isn’t a good idea to go to any show or event or to apply for funding with any expectation.
Where do you see your company in five years time?
With a full product power range, working in hybrid & electric drives and having several new patents under our belts plus a 100% share of a market which frankly doesn’t currently exist - yet.
What advice would you give to aspiring innovators?
Have a clear idea of where you want your innovation to be and what it should do as no one else will see that destination – it is too easy to be deflected from where you want it to go. Once you are there then listen to those who can realise its application.
Duodrive will be part of the Innovation Zone at the inaugural Venturefest South event taking place at Winchester Guildhall on 9th March – for more information and to book your tickets, visit https://venturefestsouth.co.uk/