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6 August, 2015 - 11:30 By Tony Quested

Guitar man praises Cambridge entrepreneur programme

John Crawford of Ingenious Audio with Jack

A Scottish audio technology startup that has just secured funding has paid tribute to the Ignite programme run at the Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning in Cambridge this summer.

Ingeneous Audio CEO, John Crawford (pictured), said Ignite provided a superb benchmarking opportunity for the business and that mixing with entrepreneurs on the programme was inspirational.

After a highly successful crowdfunding launch, Ingenious Audio has just secured a significant VC investment to support product rollout and wider introduction to the market. The Edinburgh-based company has gained an investment of £310,000 through Kelvin Capital and the Scottish Co-investment Fund from the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, for Fi-Live and Jack.

Its Fi-Live technology is the first real time audio streaming system over WiFi, offering better than Bluetooth audio and enabling products like ‘Jack the WiFi Guitar Cable.’ This means home and stage musicians can connect wirelessly to amplifiers and pedals and unmodified PCs, tablets and smartphones to edit, record and share.

Beyond Jack, the company sees this technology as a higher quality successor to Bluetooth in a massive range of products and is already getting significant market interest for a range of applications.

Crawford told Business Weekly: “Since announcing Jack we've received massive interest from customers around the world and commercial inquiries for both the product and the underlying technology Fi-Live. We are hugely indebted to our early backers and the online community that has supported us. This funding allows us to widen our reach to both ramp up production and explore the range of other applications and customers for this technology.

“Comparing Fi-Live and Bluetooth is a bit like difference between DVD and Blu-Ray, and in live applications like the guitar there's no comparison.”

CfEL at Cambridge Judge Business School enjoyed massive global support for this year’s Ignite programme and Crawford was among the devotees. He said: “The Ignite program was a really useful opportunity to review the whole business plan and messaging and the slide deck we refined in the process went on to be the foundation of our investor pitch.

“But perhaps the most useful process is being immersed with a range of other entrepreneurs all going through similar challenges and sharing ideas. It's easy to get isolated in startup so it's really helpful to get an insight into what other tech companies are going through.

“Likewise having the opportunity to speak to industry veterans who have built tech companies themselves is much more real-world learning experience, not just textbook quotes but a view into what was actually done in real case histories.”

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