Research2Business Finalists 2016

University College Cork collaborating with Statistical Solutions - Dr Brian O'Flaherty

Cork-based SME Statistical Solutions has been working with Dr Brian O’Flaherty and his team at UCC since 2010.  The company specialises in statistical analysis software used primarily for statistical calculations in medical trials.  The original piece of work began with Dr O’Flaherty undertaking a detailed project to evaluate the company’s business model and suggest opportunities for growth. This resulted in a recommendation to diversify the company’s business and a full research collaboration followed that gave rise to an innovative new software analytics service platform product being developed, called PX.  This product helps subscription based retailers in the publishing industry predict churn and has positioned Statistical Solutions for future growth in this sector. The software was licensed to Statistical Solutions who created a new company called PX Analytics to commercialise the software and the first products have already been sold. Through this collaboration, Statistical Solutions is now looking to double their subscription business within 18 months. Dr O’Flaherty has gained valuable insight into the area of entrepreneurship, business transformation, service innovation and the issues faced by SMEs.  UCC has developed deep links with the company whose CEO, Mary Byrne now sits on the board of the IGNITE Graduate Business Innovation Programme and is involved in various aspects of the entrepreneurship space at UCC.

University of Limerick collaborating with Stryker Ireland - Dr Eamonn de Barra

This collaboration between Dr Eamonn de Barra at UL and Stryker Ireland, a leading medical technology firm, began in 2011.  Stryker had developed intellectual property for a novel dual paste hydroxyapatite bone cement concept but had encountered several technical challenges with product development.  Dr de Barra and his team worked with Stryker to propose and test hypotheses that ultimately resolved several formulation and manufacturing process issues.  This led to Stryker putting in place a team of 15-20 engineers, scientists, and technicians to transfer the knowledge and process derived from the work at UL into Stryker to commercialise the medical device DirectInject® - the world’s first syringe loaded injectable tetra-calcium phosphate based cement product. FDA cleared and CE marked for clinical use, the material is designed to be injected directly into a bone defect.  Upon injection it undergoes an in situ setting reaction, filling the defect and over time integrating with the native skeletal structure.  The DirectInject® device is now being manufactured at Stryker’s facility in Limerick and is expected to have a significant global business and clinical impact. The collaboration has benefited Dr Eamonn de Barra by increasing his understanding of the needs of industry in Ireland. The project enabled two-way transfer of knowledge between the research group and Stryker thereby growing the expertise of UL and Ireland’s researchers in this field. It has resulted in additional funding from Stryker into Dr de Barra’s group to support further training of researchers and industry leaders of the future.

Waterford Institute of Technology collaborating with Boston Scientific, Schivo and Lisnabrin - Dr Ramesh Raghavendra

This multi-party project leveraged the advanced 3D Metal Additive Manufacturing (AM) facility at the South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM) in Waterford Institute of Technology to build a collaboration with Boston Scientific (MNC), Schivo (Indigenous SME) and Lisnabrin (LEO client).  3D Metal Additive Manufacturing (AM) is an emerging technology that is widely forecast to revolutionise the factories of the future. The project, running successfully over 18 months, targeted the development of components whose geometry is sufficiently complex that they do not lend themselves to conventional machining techniques.  As a result of this project, the South East region has been established as a centre of knowledge in the field of Additive Manufacturing (AM) in Ireland; Boston Scientific Clonmel has established itself as the leading knowledge centre for additive manufacturing within their global network.  The formation of R&D capabilities at this facility has enabled advances in product fabrication and led to significant savings in development costs. Schivo has now formed Schivo 3D, a vertically integrated manufacturing and supply chain facility, providing 3D printing and manufacturing of components and assemblies to a variety of industries. Through its exposure to the technology and expertise in this project, Lisnabrin has laid the foundation for significant business growth through its ability to now offer customers solutions to problems through innovative designs or additive manufacturing post-processing services.

Find the complete list of finalists for 2016 here.