News - 12 September 2014

Grant Boost for Nottm IoT Company

Ciseco Limited is an ‘internet of things’ company combining the physical and virtual worlds. They are the latest business in Nottingham’s digital content sector to be given a boost thanks to the Nottingham Technology Grant Fund (N’Tech) of £63,000.  N’Tech grants are funded through the Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF). The funding provides grants of between £20,000 to £1 million to support growth and expansion.

Ciseco was founded in 2008 by Nottingham-born Miles Hodkinson and the company’s radio technology has been used in applications from NASA prototype robots to remote control bomb disposal tanks. Ciseco’s wireless inventor’s kit for the Raspberry Pi (credit card sized mini-computer) can be seen in Maplin stores across the UK. 

To develop their ‘internet of things’ strategy Ciseco is launching a wide range of low power wireless sensors, and they all communicate using Ciseco’s messaging standard LLAP+, or Lightweight Local Automation Protocol, which is an easy to use and free method of sending data between low power devices, through cable or wireless. LLAP+ is as simple as sending a text message, but can be sent to and received by over 43 million sensors per network.

These LLAP+ sensors make it simple to connect devices across your home or business, and will be remotely monitored by a USB antenna plugged into a laptop or other smart device. Wireless connectivity is becoming an increasingly large part of everyday life; the concept that our everyday electronic devices will be connected to our own network is swiftly becoming reality. LLAP+ is a vivid reminder of how close the internet of things actually is.

Nottingham’s thriving technology and digital content sector is one of the key areas of growth identified for the city. It is estimated that there are already more than 6,000 people employed in Nottingham’s digital content sector and Nottingham is becoming a centre for software development*.

Ciseco’s wired and wireless products can already be found in 18 countries, its technology is used in the home, laboratories, factories, offices, universities, orchards in Australia and even the heart of the Serengeti. The N’Tech grant will enable Ciseco to increase its market in the UK and across the globe by enabling them to produce their technology at the rate that end users and manufacturers are demanding.  

There are more than 10 billion wirelessly connected devices in the market today; with over 30 billion devices expected by 2020**. There is a growing market offering simple, energy efficient products for the household and consumers are accepting and embracing these continuing developments.

Based in the Nottingham Clean Tech Centre, the grant will enable Ciseco to create seven full-time equivalent jobs over the next two years and safeguard three other roles.

Will Stone, Head of Channel Strategy at Ciseco, said: “I’m delighted that our pioneering technology and business potential is being recognised. The grant is a massive boost to the firm and will help drive our quest to put Nottingham on the map, as our country’s ‘internet of things’ capital.”

N’Tech is a core element of Nottingham City Council’s Nottingham Growth Plan delivered through its “Growing Nottingham” campaign – a blueprint for the city’s future business growth and one of the most ambitious strategies of the UK’s Core Cities. Measures introduced as part of the plan have played a key role in encouraging new business formation through various finance and support packages.

N’Tech grants are geared towards the growing life sciences, digital content and clean technology sectors and the fund is delivered by Nottingham City Council. The programme, launched in April 2013 has offered 66 grants to businesses in the Greater Nottingham area worth £7.6 million.  So far 28 offers have been made to businesses in the digital content sector totalling £3.4 million. 

There are a further 25 applications in the pipeline requesting £1½ million, and N’Tech closes to applications on 30 September 2014. To date 335 jobs have been created and safeguarded as a result of projects supported by N’Tech.

Councillor Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs and Growth at the City Council, said: “We’re very pleased to support Ciseco’s growth. The market they’re operating in is very exciting and full of untapped potential that we’re eager for Nottingham to benefit from. The technology sector is a priority in Nottingham and will provide growth for the city in the future.”

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