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Solveiga Pakštaitė (Mimica)

Solveiga Pakštaitė won March's Smarter Future Award, was shortlisted for the 2015 Shell LiveWIRE Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award and won the 2016 Shell Staff Inspiration Award.
Bump Mark, designed by Solveiga Pakštaitė, is an innovative design that can reduce food waste by more accurately tracking food decay.
 
Using a thin gelatine layer to monitor food decay, Bump Mark lets users know the condition of their food by simply running a finger over the label. If it’s smooth, then the food is safe to eat, but if you can feel bumps forming as the gelatine breaks down, the food has started to decay. The invention was originally intended for visually impaired people who struggle to read expiry dates, but it can also reduce food waste for fully-sighted consumers.

However, for Solveiga, becoming an entrepreneur was never her goal. As a student completing her final major project for an Industrial Design & Technology degree at Brunel University, the creation of Bump Mark was fuelled by a desire to create something useful as part of her coursework.

“Like many students with a final year project, once I’d created Bump Mark I never wanted to see it again,” says Solveiga. “A packaging designer who I incidentally met while I was halfway through developing it encouraged me to take the invention further, while a previous Shell LiveWIRE winner and classmate Sam Etherington suggested I apply for the Shell LiveWIRE Smarter Future Award – and I’m very glad he did.”

A week after starting an internship with a trends-forecasting company, Solveiga won a James Dyson Award. She was soon juggling her internship with her own business, and managing the interest from major supermarkets keen to take Bump Mark to market.

Having registered Design By Sol as a company in October 2014, Solveiga continued to receive leads from prospective buyers for her Bump Mark product. She used a one-day retail trial at a supermarket to secure data about customer responses to the product, but realised that bringing Bump Mark to market would be dependent upon further laboratory testing. That’s where Shell came in.

Solveiga won £5,000 in March 2015 from the Shell LiveWIRE Smarter Future Award, which allowed her to conduct the testing necessary to take Bump Mark from an idea to a regulated food item. She was also the winner of the 2016 Shell Staff Inspiration Award, in which hundreds of Shell staff voted her company as the year’s most inspirational participant of the Shell LiveWIRE and Shell Springboard Programmes.

Solveiga is currently focused on ramping up her R&D in preparation for a partnership with a major food retailer.
 
You can follow Solveiga Pakštaitė on Twitter.

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