To mark International Women’s Month this March, South Bank Innovation (SBI), within LSBU, has chosen 11 women across its programmes to promote their entrepreneurship and start-up businesses.
Shiti Rastogi Maghani, Karolina Löfqvist, Livia Ng and Tatjana Golubovic have been chosen by the SBI team for their fantastic ideas, their drive, as well as the potential impact of their respective businesses. Each are working in a different aspect of the healthtech industry, highlighting how growing the ranks of women in this field will revolutionise the sector, through the successful commercialisation of treatments, technologies, innovations and services, some of which will have been inspired by women from the very outset.
Being paid less for the same job as a man is one of the of the biggest equality hurdles women face. The gender pay gap, unfortunately, is reflected in the tech sectors and in the related medtech field, where men are more likely to be recipients of venture capital funding.
By providing free business and innovation support, SBI removes one of the biggest barriers to success – funding, benefiting women with ideas today that can change lives of many people tomorrow. Through SBI, entrepreneurs behind healthtech and medtech innovations also gain access to Simulation for Digital Health (SimDH), a programme supporting healthtech start-ups and SMEs to innovate, develop and deliver new products and services.
As a global executive high-flyer for over a decade, Rastogi Maghani found home/hotel-workouts helped keep her grounded while frequently travelling across the US, UK, Europe and India. In her quest to achieve remote workouts that match the experience of in-person ones, the idea of Breathe Happy was born.
The emerging at-home fitness brand is now focused on personalising the experience and has also won an Innovate UK grant to develop an AI-capable personalised and remote wellbeing programme for older adults affected by Covid-19.
Through SBI/LSBU Breathe Happy is exploring the possibility of working with data science students who will potentially be seconded to the company as it launches and begins building proprietary datasets.
Find out more about Breathe Happy and about Shiti Rastogi Maghani’s work through her International Women's Month interview.
Löfqvist developed the Hormona app to enable women to track signs and symptoms of hormone imbalances and manage their health. The app, she says, was born out of her own frustration at the time it took (five years) for a thyroid disorder diagnosis. “It was such a long, lonely and depressing journey and I just knew that there had to be a better way for women to get help with hormonal issues,” she says.
Löfqvist has brought her experience as a management consultant focused on digitalisation of large corporations to bear on Hormona’s development at rapid pace, with a commercial offering planned for launch in April, having executed its first funding round in late 2020.
Through SBI/LSBU Löfqvist has tapped into a network of professionals with expertise in specialist areas related to Hormona’s business, to access key information in rapid time.
Read more about Karolina Löfqvist and Hormona here.
Ng, a neuroscientist, founded Neucruit as a “match-making” platform for patients and researchers to deliver more successful outcomes in patient recruitment for clinical research. Past studies show that 19% of clinical trials were terminated early because they could not accrue enough participants.
Ng has first-hand experience in grasping issues with recruiting patients for research projects during time she spent in various research roles. Neucruit, which aims to achieve “research for all patients, patients for all research”, secured funding from Innovate UK in 2020 to accelerate development and is about to begin running recruitment for three Covid-19 trials as part of the UKRI-Innovate UK Covid-19 grant.
She believes femtech is a critically important field, where it could revolutionise women’s contraception options as well as fertility testing.
Livia spoke to SBI about her journey as a healthtech entrepreneur here.
The concept of MyWorkMode came to Golubovic in her role of devising qualifications and training programmes in the nursing and care fields, which provided her with the opportunity to hear the needs of overworked, undervalued care workers.
MyWorkMode brings carers and clients together via a platform, matching carers’ availability with clients’ need for their services in real-time. Carers using MyWorkMode are paid 100% of their earnings, because there is no agency commission, and also charges lower booking fees. Care organisations benefit through lower procurement costs, helping tight budgets go further.
Since joining SBI/LSBU’s SimDH accelerator Golubovic has met experts in technology and is now formulating a fundraising pitch to be able to expand the platform to add nurses and other allied health professionals and also enhance functionality to increase the client base.
Read more about MyWorkMode and Tatjana Golubovic here.