Ellie Coyte is Founder and Head of Marketing at Haelu, a start-up which builds software to support health and social care. She joined the Alacrity Foundation after graduating in 2020 and that provided her with mentors and enabled her to develop the concept behind Haelu’s product. It also introduced her to the fellow students with whom she set up the business.
Haelu’s tool empowers social care workers without clinical training to record signs and symptoms, and alerts them when a health professional is needed. “The aim is to help meet people’s needs earlier so that they can live happier and healthier lives,” she says. ”Because while people are tending to live longer they are not necessarily healthier.” She also hopes it will help social care workers be more valued by giving them a means of sharing much of the knowledge they already have about people they work with.
It is early days and the tool is still under development. However, Ellie believes it has the potential to be adopted in health authorities across Wales and the rest of the UK and Haelu is going through an intensive growth period which she finds stimulating and rewarding. “The best thing about this situation is having room to grow,” she says. “It’s so exciting to be always learning something new that you didn’t know yesterday.
In the early 2000s, Angus Cheong saw the potential to use real-time structured and unstructured data analysis to improve the quality of insight from data mining. Angus was a lecturer focused on developing techniques to take public opinion research beyond conventional surveys and polling and after 13 years in academe, he left university life to set up a consultancy focused on data analysis for industry and government using advanced techniques such as AI and machine learning.
In 2017, this became uMax Data Technology. Angus is still the company’s chief executive, and the business now has offices in Hong Kong and Singapore and clients across Asia. He calls their approach “DiVo” (data in value out) in contrast to many previous “GiGo” systems (garbage in, garbage out).
Entrepreneurs want to change things all the time. So says Dr Rebecca Harding, economist and serial entrepreneur. Rebecca’s career has certainly involved breaking traditions and rattling cages. “I’ve always been a self starter who knows my own mind and has a clear sense of direction in my education and career,” she says.
When her comprehensive school did not offer A’ level German she joined lessons at the local boys’ grammar. Participating in drama clubs and student productions has also helped her throughout her professional life, she says. At Sussex University Rebecca gained a BA in Economics with German. The interdisciplinary nature of the course has proved very helpful in business life, she says. “It enabled me to study politics, philosophy, economics, sociology and international relations.”
After taking a doctorate in Technology and HR, she began working in academe, which she describes as “a brilliant training for entrepreneurship because academics spend their time generating ideas and thinking of ways to solve problems.” At London Business School, Rebecca ran the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor — a survey of entrepreneurship worldwide. It helped her understand the power of data in helping people and driving success.
In 2007, Rebecca founded her first company, Delta Economics, and began analysing why people start businesses and the challenges they face achieving growth. Her research showed that their motivation “is more about solving problems and innovating than making money.” It led to her second start-up, Coriolis Technologies, formed in 2017 to provide trade and trade finance data and analytics for the trade finance sector.
“Global trade is worth $21 trillion a year and the value of trade finance is between $15tn and $17tn: 90 per cent of it is still paper-based,” she says. “Digitising global trade is a huge opportunity.”