When resources are tight, early stage businesses often have to juggle funds, funding applications, product development and market development all at the same time.
Here, Fearsome describe how they can help bridge the gap between having a cutting edge piece of technology and creating the greatest chance of commercial success. It’s been a busy last couple of weeks at Fearsome meeting with some very exciting early stage businesses.
Firstly there was the very early morning alarm to get to The Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC) in Aberdeen to meet and spend the day with their 2019 Pioneers on the excellent TechX programme.
Then just yesterday, we held a great session at Fearsome Towers with some of the potential spin out companies coming through the ranks at the University of Strathclyde.
This mix of oil and gas, ATEX and medical device/ life sciences companies all shared a couple of common themes that were picked up by Mark Hegarty, CEO of ClinSpec Dx, the most recent Strathclyde spin out. Mark shared his story of the last 18-24 months, which has been spent juggling funding, product development, market development and verification and doing enough to keep moving things forward, often without the ability to “complete” any single aspect of the development.
Firstly, he described Fearsome’s flexibility of approach that has allowed ClinSpec to work within our Product Development Roadmap in a modular way that suited their timings, funds, funding bids and market requirements, which has ultimately helped them move towards their £1.6m+ spin out announced at the end of April.
Secondly, he picked up on the importance of what Alan Suttie described as “Bridging the Gap” for early stage businesses.
Often these early stage businesses have a strong core technical capability, but what’s often neglected is a strong market focus - not just with the end users of the product, but with all of the key actors (retailers, distributors, agents, buyers) involved within the market.
Very often with early stage technologies they will have identified numerous potential markets or applications for their technology, which is great in theory, but unless there is some degree of focus, funding can often be difficult to secure. Evaluating, sequencing and aligning yourself with the right market opportunities is therefore a critical aspect of this early stage development.
We understand this early stage development process, which is why we have a team that spans not just product design engineering, electrical and electronic engineering, software and firmware design, human factors design, but also brand and marketing planning and commercial strategy development.
Where proposition development is as important as and often fuels the product development. Where product and brand visualisation and testing is as important as the testing of human factors. Where the commercial strategy is as important as the product strategy.
Only by delivering these in tandem, providing strong and irrefutable evidence of market desirability as well as ensuring that the product development process is robust, creative, protected and compliant with the identified regulations, we know that funding becomes significantly easier to secure and the chances of a successful market launch becomes infinitely more achievable.
If you’ve got an early stage business that requires some support to get to market, we’d love to hear from you.