Innovative Hull business gets Powerhouse backing for Moodbeam device
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 20 Jun 2018
An innovative Hull start-up which has designed a wearable device that allows children to log their mood and enhance mental wellbeing has secured £200,000 of investment.
Moodbeam is the brain child of Red5 co-founder Jonathan Elvidge and former journalist Christina Colmer McHugh, who came up with the idea when her daughter became anxious at school.
The new high-tech device allows children to record how they are feeling, and their parents are then informed through a mobile or online app.
It is not exclusively aimed at young people though, as Moodbeam hopes to tackle the complex issue of mental health.
Ms McHugh said: "It’s been a two-year journey, but Moodbeam has been shown to provide valuable insights into wellbeing and mental health.
“We set out to create a device with the potential to change lives. This investment will help to make that possible.”
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The invention has received the backing of the Northern Powerhouse through a £200,000 investment.
Since being founded in 2016, Moodbeam has seen stellar success, winning the Best Emerging Technology Award at the 2017 Hull Digital Awards.
The backing from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund will now pave the way for Moodbeam to push forwards with its work.
The device, which links to an online and mobile platform, gives insights into how moods change over time, showing patterns and trends that can support positive change.
The funding will allow the business to put the device into production.
Simon Crabtree, investment manager with Mercia Fund Managers – who manage the Northern Powerhouse fund - said: “Moodbeam has proven to be a powerful offering, thanks to its ability to timestamp emotions and provide an ‘at a glance’ way to see how people feel.
“The technology could have a wide range of uses, from supporting children and young adults and the elderly in care, to enhancing wellbeing in the workplace and sports performance.
“The funding will allow the company to take the next step in bringing it to market.”
Over the past year, prototypes have been trialled in multiple settings and the company, which is based in Hull’s Centre for Digital Innovation (C4DI), has received interest from potential users including a university, the NHS, businesses, sports councils and health campaigners.
Mark Wilcockson, senior relationship manager at British Business Bank, said: “The Northern tech sector is giving rise to a number of exciting products, ideas, and innovations that are making a real impact on customers.
“Moodbeam is testament to that, and the company’s award-winning device has the potential to make positive differences to the wellbeing of customers.
“We are pleased to announce this latest round of funding from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, and are confident that the team at Moodbeam will continue to build on its momentum as a result.”