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March 2015

Humanities success in the ‘Venture Out’ Competition

(3 March 2015)

Faculty of Humanities students picked up four of the awards at the tenth Venture Out competition, which saw students from thirteen schools across the University pitching their best ideas in the hope of winning first prize in their category.

There were five categories in this year’s competition, as well as a new innovation challenge category, offered by the competition’s sponsor, PZ Cussons.

Dr Martin Henery, Venture Competition Director said, “Once again the standard has been incredibly high and we have had entries from students from right across the University; it’s good to see that we have some highly entrepreneurial students here at Manchester. The atmosphere on the day at the poster viewing was fantastic with visitors being able to discuss the finalists’ ideas with the students themselves.” 


The Faculty winners were:

  • Digital

Joshua Smith, School of Social Sciences, developed an app to enable consumers to replace existing plastic loyalty cards and sign up to new loyalty schemes at a touch of a button.

  • Social

Botakoz Kassenali and Abhishek R Patil, Manchester Business School developed a project to encourage old people to get involved in the modern digital world.

  • Business

Christos Kounnas, Manchester Business School, proposed ‘Toll Exchange’ to allow owners of DIY, cookery and other tool to rent them out for a short-time period.

  • PZ Cussons Innovation Challenge

Dannu Danil, Shaun Teo, and Prashant Chandrashekar – Manchester Business School

In the challenge set by competition sponsors to ‘help consumers in Africa stay safe and hygienic when they haven’t got easy access to clean water’, three MBA students scooped the winning prize of £1500 with their ‘Power Cycle’ project. The team came up with the life-supporting idea of the Power Cycle; a bicycle that produces energy from kinetic movement and stores it inside the attached power adaptor. Users can use this energy to supply them with their daily needs, such as boiling water in order to sterilise it.


The other winners were:

  • Graphene

Leonid Nichman, School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, investigated how to deal with impurities in graphene.

  •  Research

Eve Blumson, Uybach Vo, Matthew Rosser, and Osman Zarroug, Faculty of Life Sciences and Manchester Pharmacy School, identified endometriosis markers to develop a clinically useful non-invasive diagnostic test.