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3 November, 2021 - 11:47 By Tony Quested

DeepTech focus for Cambridge Impulse Programme

The University of Cambridge Impulse Programme, which was created to nurture the brightest minds from international academia, business and research, is inviting applications for 2022. 

The sixth iteration of the programme will focus on DeepTech. The objective is to empower entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs with the skills and resources to fast-track game-changing innovation to commercial success.

Global investment in DeepTech startups has quadrupled in recent years according to BCG data. Tech Nation recently reported that UK Deep Tech investment rose 17 per cent in 2020 – the highest rate of growth globally. Impulse alumni have already raised £101 million of funding and their ventures support 392 new jobs.

The programme prides itself on providing a supportive environment that facilitates collaboration with mentors, VCs and business angels, experts in IP and law, industry partners and other like-minded individuals. 

Among the Programme’s mentors and contributors is advisory board member Florin Udrea, a Professor of Semiconductor Engineering at the University of Cambridge and co-founder and CTO of multiple award-winning deep tech companies Cambridge GaN Devices and Flusso. 

Professor Udrea was recently named Cambridge Enterprise’s Academic Entrepreneur of the Year in the Business Weekly Awards.

He said: “I am delighted to once again be part of the Impulse Programme and work with inspiring people who have game-changing ideas. As an academic entrepreneur, I use my experience of turning an academic invention into commercial practice to help the next generations of inventors.”

The Impulse Programme claims high levels of successful outputs. Jean de La Verpilliere, co-founder and CEO of Echion Technologies, was a participant in the 2017 programme – the same year he co-founded Echion which develops superfast-charging lithium-ion batteries. 

In August this year, Echion raised £10 million in a Series A round to support growth plans that include a final push to commercial adoption and a recruitment drive.

Jenny Tillotson, founder of transformative technology company eScent, participated in the 2020 programme and was suitably impressed. She said: “Impulse has provided me access to the people and the framework to ensure that we are ‘investment ready’ for the next phase of development.  

“We now have an engaging and robust story to pitch to investors to help us secure the funds to miniaturise the scent delivery system and build partnerships in a variety of growing markets.”

Supporting postdoctoral researchers to achieve success with early-stage projects is an important role of the programme. In 2021, alumni and finalists in the Chris Abell Postdoc Business Plan competition included Cambridge Conduits (steered by Alex Justin), Cambridge Nucleomics – led by Kaikai Chen and Mohammed Alawami – and DeepForm, headed up by Christopher Cleaver. 

The 12-week hybrid Impulse Programme kicks off on April 26, 2022. Individual applications can be submitted by visiting the Impulse Programme website

If you are interested in your organisation partnering with the Impulse Programme email Yupar Myint at: impulse [at] The deadline for choosing the next cohort is March 20, 2022.

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