Commercialisation funding and support for academics in cyber

Posted on: 23/02/2022

About to enter its sixth year, the Cyber Security Academic Startup Accelerator Programme (CyberASAP) plays a unique role in supporting the commercialisation of academic cyber research.

Over 100 teams from more than 50 UK universities have successfully applied to participate in the programme and last year saw the introduction of a new funding stream for projects involved in the UKRI-funded Security of Digital Technology at the Periphery (SDTaP) initiative which includes the PETRAS IoT research hub. That stream is being repeated for the current CyberASAP funding competition, open now and closing on 2 March. More details are here.

Director of PETRAS and recent CyberASAP alumni is Jeremy Watson. He participated in CyberASAP via this new funding stream in 2021/22 to develop TAIMAS – a unique building Management System (BMS) cyber-attack and tamper detection ‘system as a service’ solution. He had this to say about his CyberASAP experience:

“Taking part in the CyberASAP process has been fantastically valuable. Despite many years of managing R&D in industry, I learned a huge amount about marketing, selling and presenting to investors and clients. The speakers lined up for the excellent Bootcamp days were of top quality, and advice from venture capitalists invaluable.

CyberASAP provides the essential tools to take academic ideas into potential marketplaces, helping participants gain the insights needed to understand their products from the clients’ point of view. In addition to directly supporting the development of spin-out product or service opportunities, the value of the CyberASAP learning experience is sufficient reason in itself to justify participation.”

Jeremy Watson CBE – TAIMAS, Professor of Engineering Systems UCL. Director & PI: PETRAS (SDTaP Research Centre)

Also participating via the SDTaP funding stream for 2021/22 was Uchenna Daniel Ani from UCL. He added:

“Participating in the CyberASAP year 5 programme has been invaluable…There’s a great line-up of speakers…Listening to, and interacting with those great minds have helped to improve my knowledge and skills in strategic thinking, problem-solving, leadership, partnership and collaborations”.

CyberASAP is led by Innovate UK KTN’s Dr Emma Fadlon and also draws on their network of highly experienced industry experts who provide expertise and insights across a variety of vital business disciplines.

Thinking of applying for 2022/23? More information is here. You can also hear directly from some previous Alumni about their motivations to commercialise their research and their experience of the programme here. And our Impact Report is here.

You’ll find a recording of the competition briefing here.

CyberASAP is funded by the UK Government Department of Digital, Culture, Media & Sport and delivered by Innovate UK, who manages the grant funding to universities, and Innovate UK KTN who deliver the programme. CyberASAP now also has an additional funding stream for PETRAS Projects in the Security of Digital Technology at the Periphery (SDTaP), funded by UKRI.

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