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Indoor location finding firm wins SE funding
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Business & Economy

Indoor location finding firm wins SE funding 

Software tackles poor signal areas such as shopping centres and airports

Sensewhere, the indoor positioning company, has been awarded £1.4m by Scottish Enterprise to create jobs and develop its technology.

The firm is pioneering the use of location and navigation data in dense urban areas, including shopping centres and airports, where GPS and other systems are blocked. It uses a database of electromagnetic sources, such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth signals and other sen- sors to triangulate a user’s location. The grant will help create seven highly-skilled roles at the company’s headquarters in Edinburgh and secure existing jobs. The aim is to enhance the technology’s location accuracy performance indoors and outdoors, and across platforms.

Rob Palfreyman, co-founder and chief executive, said: “Our technology creates opportunities for people and brands to connect with others. Shopping centres, for example, often have little or no signal, but with our software retailers and brands can connect with customers through location-based advertising in a way that’s simple, fast and accurate.

“As well as creating a number of jobs and protecting existing posts, this grant will help us cement our commitment to Edinburgh as our centre of excellence for research.”

Jim Devine, chairman of Sensewhere, added: “We are delighted to have received support from Scottish Enterprise to develop our intellectual property. With this funding we can continue to make waves in the market.”

Jim Watson, director of innovation and enterprise services at Scottish Enterprise said: “Sensewhere is a great example of an ambitious Scottish company that’s developing innovative technology for global markets.”

SenSeWhere WaS one of two Edinburgh firms among UK technology companies raising investments totaling £294m in August. According to the Tech City News investment tracker, the number of rounds announced was 17, which is lower than the previous month but the total amount raised was higher.

This is largely due to Deliveroo closing its series E round at £210m. Notonthehighstreet.com also closed its series E funding round at £21m.

While the bulk of companies were London-based, two rounds were raised by firms based in Edinburgh. As well as Senswehere, TVSquared, a firm that provides performance insights into the efficiency of TV advertising, raised £2.3m.

Anna Boffetta, an investor with Balderton Capital, said that the impact of Brexit had not been as severe as many had feared: “The volume of companies raising investment for the first time is down compared with the same period in 2015, but this is not cause for panic. The response has been minor, measured and proportionate and the best companies will continue to raise money.”

Pyreos, the Edinburgh-based passive infra-red sensor developer, secured £1.8m of funding from new and existing shareholders in September as it continues to expand its business. The company, which was spun out from German industrial firm Siemens in 2007, will use the cash to accelerate development and marketing of its products and sensor components, including the ezPyro sensor, which it launched in May this year.

ezPyro, which has a built-in digital interface, has a broad range of applications, including the detection of flames in the oil and gas and petrochemical industries, the analysis of gases by
industrial laboratories or universities, and in smart watches, fitness trackers and other wearable technology.

Elevator, the Aberdeen-based social enterprise dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and businesses, has signed with two new partners for its accelerator programme. Commercial law firm Burness Paull and Pinnacle – an Aberdeen-based software developer – will provide financial support for the programme and advice and support to company founders.

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