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October 2018 Shell LiveWIRE Smarter Future Programme Shortlist Announced!

Wed, 07 November 2018

These five young entrepreneurs have been shortlisted for the Shell LiveWIRE Smarter Future Programme for the month of October!
The Smarter Future Programme provides £5,000 in start-up funding to one winner per month to help young entrepreneurs with the most innovative business ideas to tackle the biggest energy and resource challenges we face.
 
The five shortlisted businesses for the month of October are:
 
Lorenzo Conti (Crover) 
Crover is tackling the world’s future food challenges with its ground-breaking remote probing device, designed to move easily through cereal grains stored in silos. Mass and quality loss in cereal grains caused by pests, grain moisture and changeable temperatures currently goes largely undetected in cereal stores and these issues can result in a 20-30% product loss in long-term storage silos. Crover is the first product able to monitor grain condition across multiple variables throughout the whole silo, offering real-time data, proactive management benefits and hugely reducing potential product loss, which can contribute up to 215 million tonnes of CO2 per year.  
  
Thomas Farrugia (Beta Bugs) 
Beta Bugs is an insect breeding company that creates high performance breeds for the rapidly-growing ‘insects-as-protein’ sector. The protein-dense insects are used in livestock and aquaculture feed, reducing the need for environmentally damaging soymeal and fishmeal. Compared to these traditional protein resources, insects grow quickly and require minimal land and water. Beta Bugs is utilising the short lifespan and increased generational turnover of insects to test new breeding biotechniques to accelerate desired characteristics. Beta Bugs’ first product is a faster growing strain of insect which they can sell on to commercial insect farms.  
  
Johnson Fernandes (Equiwatt) 
Equiwatt is a cleantech start-up whose vision is to innovate the residential energy markets. Their interactive digital platform helps energy consumers save money on their energy bills by managing energy usage for them. Equiwatt’s smart hub uses AI to remotely monitor and manage appliance usage using existing smart technology such as smart meters and smart appliances. The whole process is automated, and customers can go about their everyday lives with no inconvenience.    
Equiwatt’s platform enables households to be rewarded for using less energy when the grid is under stress.   
  
Harrison McDonough (Agrihance)
Agrihance is a university start-up business which is creating the world’s first automated system for aeroponic vertical farming. With plans to fully automate seeding and picking processes, the end goal of Agrihance is to create a human-free grow room which will reduce plant infection, bugs, and allow for a slightly higher concentration of CO2, producing greater plant yields. Agrihance’s soil-less growing system reduces water and electricity consumption compared to other agriculture methods, and by building up rather than out, brownfield town spaces and otherwise unusable land plots can be repurposed as sustainable growing spaces and maintained remotely.  
 
Isabella West (Hirestreet) 
Hirestreet is the UK's first high street focused fashion rental platform. The rise of social media and the associated reluctance to wear clothing multiple times has led to an increase in financially and environmentally unsustainable fashion consumption. Hirestreet customers rent outfits for around 15% of the retail price, saving money, wardrobe space and the environment. The business is based on extending the lifetime of an outfit; every time a dress is re-worn, its environmental impact is reduced by 44%. By changing a nation’s attitude towards consumption, Hirestreet is aiming to reduce our use of natural resources and greenhouse gas emissions and lessen the fashion industry’s impact on the planet.  

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