LONDON – Jamie Bankhead of Konglomerate Games has been crowned the winner of the 2019 Verizon/Unloc Enterprise Challenge. His company, which specializes in gamified experiences to improve the health and wellbeing of children with long term illnesses, beat off strong competition to win £10,000 of funding plus a mentorship and technology package.
The Verizon/Unloc Enterprise Challenge invited budding European entrepreneurs aged 16-25 to submit their technology-led start-up business concept online. A shortlist of five finalists was selected from an incredibly competitive field of entries, representing 18 European countries. A panel of judges then assessed their ideas based on their viability, sustainability and technological innovation to choose Jamie as the winning entrepreneur.
Jamie and Konglomerate Games will use the grant to further develop its video game, Archipelayo, which is designed to help with physiotherapy for children with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) - a life-limiting genetic disease. Jamie commented on his win: “The Challenge has been a great initiative to be a part of, and I am thrilled to have been awarded the winning grant. Gameplay can make physiotherapy fun, enhancing breathing and movement techniques, and making a real difference to children’s lives. We will use this grant to fund the vital analysis of the data we are currently obtaining from our trials to help us further develop our offer.”
A £1,000 grant was awarded to the four other finalists:
- Nicolas Carmont, 21: Nicolas is the founder of NetZero, a fintech app that lets you track your carbon footprint.
- Josh Clarke, 23: Josh is founder of Occumi, a platform that helps students to identify, understand, and better articulate the transferable skills that they have developed from their education and work experience.
- Myles Jardine, 23: Myles is the founder of UK UnifyEd, a one-stop student recruitment, application & scholarship system which helps UK universities attract international students and improve conversion rates, and which helps students find the necessary funding to further their studies.
- Yanik Nyberg, 24: Yanik is the founder of Seawater Solutions, an agri-tech company that develops approaches which allow degraded farmland to be turned into healthy wetland ecosystems where food is grown using seawater for climate resilience.
“Verizon strongly believes that by promoting entrepreneurship we can promote independence, innovation and success”, said Dyanne Ierardo, Verizon’s Head of International Human Resources. “The Verizon team has really enjoyed working on this competition – we were particularly impressed with the quality of ideas that were submitted! We’re looking forward to seeing what Konglomerate Games does next – and indeed, how all the finalists move their ideas forwards. We’d like to thank all the entrants for their passion and commitment to their cause.”
The panel of judges which selected the overall winner comprised: Nicola Brentnall (Chief Executive of The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust), Detlef Eppig (Executive Director, Global Network Operations, Verizon Business Group), Dyanne Ierardo (Head of International Human Resources, Verizon), Tony Judd (Managing Director, UK&I, Verizon Business Group) and Kate Robertson (Founder of One Young World).
“Gameplay can make physiotherapy fun, enhancing breathing and movement techniques, and making a real difference to children’s lives.” – Jamie Bankhead, Konglomerate Games