Latest news from Loughborough University
30 Jul 2014
Help award-winning graduate Simon to launch Geco Hub, and stop losing – in style!
Weeks after scooping a national award, enterprising Loughborough graduate Simon Lyons is close to launching a unique storage system to end the frustration of losing things.
“When we get to work or home, we tend to drop things on the nearest surface, which then gets cluttered and valuable time is spent hunting for the things we need1,” said Simon, who developed the concept whilst studying Product Design Engineering. “I wanted a solution that kept important things secure, fitted busy lifestyles and was fun and intuitive to use.”
Geco Hub’s patented design features an array of discs that part to grab hold of things such as mobile phones, keys and paperwork, whilst small things like jewellery, make up or loose change sit securely in its modular cells. Geco Hub’s design has also been praised for ease of use for people with physical disability or visual impairment, and it is ideal for caravans, campers and boats, where space is limited and essential things roll about unless firmly secured.
Geco Hub’s modular and customisable nature means that you can build your installation to a size, shape and pattern that suits you, creating something entirely unique in the process. It is one of a number of award-winning product innovations Simon has been developing in the Studio, Loughborough’s graduate commercialisation hub, which has supported his new business since he graduated with first class honours in 2013.
Simon’s latest award – undergraduate first prize in the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship competition – has helped him prepare for the crucial final phase that he hopes will see Geco Hub become a must-have product for the home.
Simon has just launched a Kickstarter campaign where supporters can pledge as little as £1 to help source the funds needed to go into mass manufacture – and receive their own Geco Hub for as little as £20.
Megan Powell Vreeswijk, Loughborough University’s Studio Manager, said: “Simon is an excellent ambassador for graduate enterprise. So far he’s funded his entire business venture with prize money for his ingenious designs. Geco Hub is a truly innovative product and I urge as many people as possible to help Simon bring it to market.”
Notes for editors
Article reference number: PR 14/146
1. According to a national surveycommissioned by eSure, we spend ten minutes every day rummaging for up to nine lost things. A common source of household arguments, men are more likely than women to lose things, with mobile phones, car keys and important paperwork being the most often misplaced.
2. The Studio provides access to the resources, expertise and knowledge to help Loughborough graduates develop sustainable businesses. To date, the Studio has supported 27 businesses, 18 of which are now registered and 16 are trading, creating 5 permanent jobs. Studio companies have won 36 awards and will turnover an estimated £200K this year. A royalty agreement means its members pay a percentage of their sales turnover when they start trading, which long-term, means the Studio will become self-sufficient.
3. Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.
It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year title in 2008-09 and has been named Sports University of the Year 2013-14 by The Times and Sunday Times. Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and has been voted England's Best Student Experience for six years running in the Times Higher Education league. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.
In 2015 the University will open an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University in London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, will offer postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.
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