Applications are now open for the 2021 RAPID Challenge. The event organised by Prodrive Ventures, the investment arm of British motorsport and advanced engineering business Prodrive, seeks to identify, reward and help bring the best and most innovative British based hardware start-ups to market.
While each year there is a prize package for the winners, all projects that match the entry criteria benefit from a range of dedicated workshops from the Challenge’s partners – providing valuable advice and insight to help build a business plan for their projects.
Five successful submissions go forward to the interview stage, with three reaching the final at Prodrive’s headquarters in Banbury in November. Here they present their projects to an invited audience and the winner is announced.
For this year, there is a prize package worth £75,000, which includes cash and a range of services from The RAPID Challenge partners: RPD International, TBAT Innovation, HSBC, Crowdcube, Bridgehead International Agency, OnePLM, The IP Asset Partnership, EY and media partner DEVELOP3D.
Prodrive head of innovation David Cullimore, said: “We came up with the idea of The RAPID Challenge in 2018, as while there were lots of competitions and investment opportunities for technology start-ups, none were focussed on only those producing hardware, something physical and tangible, rather than web or tech based.
“Britain is a hub of engineering and design creativity and it struck a chord with many entrepreneurs out there struggling to get the support and recognition they needed and deserved.”
Previous winners of The RAPID Challenge are diverse and include EAV (Electric Assisted Vehicles), which has created novel pedal assisted last mile delivery vehicles; and last year’s winner, Cosi Care whose aim is to transform the lives ofchildren suffering from eczema.
The Rapid Challenge is about nurturing British-based talent and all entrants must meet the following criteria:
- Be a disruptive hardware project
- Have a sustainable business strategy
- Pre-revenue or up to £1M annual revenue
- No more than 10 employees
- Be based in the UK