Cambridge startup Neurmind receives second tranche of Innovate UK funding
Cambridge startup Neumind has received a second tranche of funding from Innovate UK, in an initiative promoting the UK’s most promising startups.
The Neumind team is creating a platform to empower individuals with head injuries and neurological conditions to live a more functional and independent life. Founder Ellis Parry developed Neumind after his identical twin brother suffered a brain injury in 2012.
Innovate UK’s Young Innovators Next Steps Awards recognises trailblazing young entrepreneurs, accelerating their business growth to deliver big impact; these entrepreneurs were previous recipients of the Young Innovators Awards and have now been awarded a second time, based on their progress and their future growth plans.
Since winning his first award, Ellis has raised £250,000 of investment, released a prototype, gone from one user (his brother) to over 350, and developed an ambitious strategy to deliver cost-effective, long-term support in the neuro sector.
Neumind is building Alfred – an app that puts life-changing therapies in the hands of its users. Alfred uses ‘smart prompts’ - personalised multimedia messages delivered at a particular time or place. A smart prompt can be practical or therapeutic, such as a prompt that stimulates neural pathways associated with memory, a shopping list delivered when you enter your local shop, or a simple note to take the bins out.
Users can browse through a library of verified exercises and strategies in the form of templated smart prompts. Alfred’s exercises closely resemble real-life activities designed to take your independence to the next level.
The app uses advanced analytics and machine learning to determine what works and what doesn’t. The company says that for some people a simple message from a loved-one would be effective, but for others, an image may be worth a thousand words.
CEO Ellis Parry’s identical twin brother Luke suffered a serious traumatic brain injury in 2012, was told he would never be able to walk and talk again, and embarked on his life-long journey of recovery and healing.
Witnessing the huge problems faced by survivors, inaccessibility of therapy and the lack of technological aids became the motivation behind the founding of Neumind. Luke is now a member of the GB paralympic development squad and helps develop Alfred with Neumind. He suffered his serious traumatic brain injury whilst studying engineering at Oxford.