Meet our previous VOOMers
VOOM is a competition - but also a platform for publicity
where anybody has the chance to raise awareness.
You don't have to win to end up being a winner.
Meet some victorious VOOMers
“eFOLDI began like
every good idea:
a solution to a problem”
Read eFOLDI's story
Engineer Sumi was a finalist in 2016 with her battery-operated scooter that turns into a suitcase and a chair. She’d hoped to raise £20,000 but within 99 days she’d attracted £104,654 from just 60 investors – a whopping 252% of her target. By 2018, that sum had soared to nearly £900,000.
eFOLDI, winner of British Invention of the Year 2016 at The Gadget Show Live, began like most good ideas: a solution to a problem.
When Sumi’s dad, also an engineer, broke his leg, he began sketching eFOLDI as he lay in hospital. Once out, he headed straight for the shed – and the prototype was born.
In late 2016 eFOLDI went into production, disrupting the mobility scooter industry and attracting attention from every corner of the media.
“VOOM is a fantastic ice-breaker.
New clients always mention VOOM when we first sit down them…”
Read MacRebur's story
Toby won the start-up category in VOOM 2016 with MacRebur, which turns waste plastic into roads.
One of Tech Week Europe’s Ten British Start-ups Pushing Boundaries in Green Technology, MacRebur laid its first road in September 2016. Local authorities are interested, because it solves two problems: waste plastic and potholes. Planes now land on MacRebur at Carlisle Airport, and it is showcased on the driveway of Andy Murray’s hotel in Dunblane.
Toby’s target was £590,000 but within 10 days he’d raised £1.3 million, and when MacRebur was valued at £7.7 million in October 2017, he caught the attention of two major players:
“I didn’t need to run any marketing campaigns; Tarmac and Cemex approached me because I was a VOOM winner.”
“VOOM played a key role
in getting the public to support
Vibe Tickets and help our
Crowdfund raise £612,000”
Read Vibe Tickets story
Luke made the finals in 2016 with Vibe Tickets, an ethical marketplace for buying and selling live entertainment tickets at face value using an app.
By January 2017 the Vibe Tickets app had been downloaded more than 33,000 times. Fast-forward to April 2017: more than £6 million’s worth of tickets had been sold and Luke had attracted more than 170,000 followers on Twitter.
Earlier this year Vibe Tickets bagged Disruptor of the Year at the Ticketing Technology Awards, and Luke was one of Forbes’ 30 Under 30. The company, which now employs 16 people, recently opened new offices in London and, last we heard, was looking to expand in eight countries outside the UK. By the way, Cornel Lazar, marketing director at Vibe Tickets, has offered advice on how to spot a ticket scam. Read it on VOOM Pioneers.
What a Melon
“Even though Food & Drink
is a very competitive environment,
we were able to say, ‘We’re a VOOM winner and we’ve got support from JCDecaux’. It opened doors.”
Read What a Melon's story
Olly won the Crowdfunder Award with his drink What a Melon, in 2016. The prize, £50,000 in funding, was added to £62,000 Olly’s ‘crowd’ had raised – a factor which assisted but wasn’t the sole reason for his win.
“You have to stand out. We told potential backers they’d get their faces on the back of the What a Melon double-decker bus if they pledged over £75 – and it worked.”
JCDecaux helped Olly get listed by retailers – in a fiercely competitive industry – by showcasing What a Melon on their big screens at Waterloo Station during Wimbledon. Olly’s team handed out 60,000 free drinks to passers-by – two of whom were from key retailers.
What a Melon is stocked in 800 Sainsbury’s stores. And when Olly said he could supply billboards outside 100 Waitrose stores, it sealed the deal.
“Food waste causes 8% of
greenhouse gas emissions”
Read Food Cloud's story
Iseult was a runner-up in VOOM 2016 with Food Cloud, a social enterprise connecting businesses that have surplus food to charities that need it, through an app.
Store staff upload a description of the product, and the charity gets a text saying the goods are ready for collection. According to The Guardian in February 2017, FoodCloud was the No.3 app for tackling food waste.
Aldi (Ireland) had saved charities around €700,000 by November 2016, only six months after signing up. Most recent figures show Food Cloud has distributed over 28 million meals via more than 4,000 businesses and 7,500 charities.
Iseult has scooped awards galore – Newstalk WMB Social Entrepreneur Award 2016; a Think Tech and a Digital Impact awards in 2016 and 2017; a UK Future Shapers award from Marie Claire, and a place on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list in January 2017.