'Surf's up' SMS wins University's eChallenge 2009

eChallenge 2009 winners Saxony's SMS

eChallenge 2009 winners Saxony's SMS
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Friday, 20 November 2009

An innovative system for texting surf and weather conditions to those keen to hit the waves has won a team of young entrepreneurs this year's University of Adelaide's eChallenge competition.

Saxony's SMS, with members Simon Ratcliffe, Pretib Parthiban and Linda Palma, won the $10,000 first prize at last night's eChallenge dinner at the National Wine Centre as well as the People's Choice prize and The Advertiser prize.

Saxony's SMS sends text messages to surfers, windsurfers and kitesurfers when conditions are "on" at their favourite beach, removing the need for frequent checking of internet sites and listening into surf reports on the radio.

Saxony's SMS founder and chief executive officer is Simon Ratcliffe, a 1993 Computer System Engineering graduate with First-Class Honours from the University of Adelaide and a current History student. Simon says Saxony's SMS has a business plan and product prototype and will now be undergoing focus group trials, further technology development and market research with a view to a launch in summer 2010.

The eChallenge is run by the University of Adelaide's Entrepreneurship Commercialisation and Innovation Centre (ECIC) and each team must have at least one student member from any tertiary institution in South Australia.

Teams of up to six people develop a business plan for a new, previously unfunded business concept. Semi-finalists are paired with an experienced mentor from the business community.

"Each year the eChallenge captures the energy of young, bright entrepreneurs and channels it into investment-ready early stage companies," said ECIC Director Professor Noel Lindsay. "It offers competitors unprecedented access to top South Australian business acumen. Past finalists have gone on to develop successful and thriving businesses."

Second prize went to ArtNomad (Alex Ovchar, Sam Ellis and Mischa Saloukvadze) for a system for leasing artworks to businesses and other organisations.

Third prize went to Choice Touch Systems (Graeme Robertson and Christian Huber) for a computerised product comparison purchasing system that allows you to shop and compare products from different suppliers at the one site. Choice Touch also won the Vroom Prize and the Piper Alderman Prize.

 

Contact Details

Professor Noel Lindsay
Email: noel.lindsay@adelaide.edu.au
Website: https://www.adelaide.edu.au/directory/noel.lindsay
Pro Vice-Chancellor Entrepreneurship;
Dean of Business - Adelaide Business School
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 7422
Mobile: +61 (0)428 842 024


Ms Robyn Mills
Email: robyn.mills@adelaide.edu.au
Media and Communications Officer
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 6341
Mobile: +61 410 689 084