Richard graduated in July 2013 with a First Class BSc (Hons.) Software Engineering degree and was also awarded the British Computer Society (Chartered Institute for IT) computing dissertation of the year and the Adapt IT award for best overall performance in Information Technology.
In June 2013, Richard attended ‘Countdown to Launch’, a business start-up week organised by the Centre for Entrepreneurship and funded by Santander. As part of this event, Richard was successful in pitching his new business idea and was awarded funding and on-going support and mentoring.
Richard’s business PrioSym offers various services in order to help start-ups and small businesses to develop their own ‘mobile presence’. This includes:
• Creating a mobile version of an existing website
• Developing smart phone applications for businesses
• Creating a website for businesses that can be easily viewed on any type of mobile device as well as on traditional desktop computers.
PrioSym was founded due to Richard’s personal experience of running a small business and finding how costly it can be to have any type of online presence developed. To help their customers keep costs down PrioSym has developed its own in-house software which helps to reduce development time and costs. PrioSym is also a member of the Microsoft BizSpark program which gives the company access to the latest development tools.
How did you first become involved with the Centre for Entrepreneurship?
Whilst writing my dissertation, my supervisor suggested that I had a product which could be taken further after graduating. He put me in touch with the Business Start-Up Manager at the Centre for Entrepreneurship to discuss the idea further and following on from that I attended the ‘Alumni Network Evening’, where I met graduates who had started their own business and then I went on to attend ‘Countdown to Launch’.
2. What was your motivation for getting involved and did the experience meet your expectations?
Before I began my studies at Cardiff Met my previous career was as a Landlord/Licensee but after being made redundant and due to difficulties in finding work within the same industry I decided to re-train. Even before graduating I knew that I didn’t really want to go back to trying to build a new career starting at the bottom of the ladder having already worked my way up to a position where I was, to all intents and purposes, my own boss.
I decided to get involved with the events run by the Centre for Entrepreneurship because although I had experience in the day-to-day running of a business that was already established, I didn’t really know anything in regards to starting a business from scratch.
The networking event was interesting as I got to hear about other people’s stories who had been in the same position as I was aspiring to be in and this was further motivation for me but it was ‘Countdown to Launch’ that gave me that final push.
After putting together a mini business plan and pitching at the end of the five day event I was at the point where I felt that this was definitely what I wanted to do especially when I won one of the awards and had such positive feedback on my idea.
3. Out of the events you have attended, which one has been your favourite and why?
‘Countdown to Launch’ was my favourite because as well as helping me with the skills that I felt I needed at the time it also gave me that final push. If it hadn’t been for that event – the pitch etc., and winning an award I wouldn’t be in a position to be able to start my own business.
4. Do you think the experience you have gained has benefitted you?
Definitely, I feel like I am ready to take on the challenge of starting my own business but it’s also nice knowing that you have that additional support and back up. It’s encouraging to know that even now if I have a problem there’s someone I can talk to, almost like a safety net if I ever need it.
5. What are your plans for the future?
At the moment everything is focused on getting the business off the ground, building a solid customer base whilst also developing the services and products we offer. In the future the objective is to expand the business further into larger application and software development projects.