A home-use blood-test kit and an app to help new car owners were among business ideas produced by more than 50 students and recent graduates at 3 Day Startup Edinburgh.

The annual event brings together budding entrepreneurs to produce viable business proposals and develop students’ enterprising ambitions and skills.

Among the seven ideas produced by this year’s group – from a range of academic disciplines – were a home-use blood-test system to prevent regular patients travelling back and forth to the doctor’s surgery; a peer-based storage scheme for students; and several smartphone apps, including one to support new and uncertain car owners, and another to bring together teams to play sports.

Expert mentors

Over the three days, the students and graduates of the University of Edinburgh first agreed which ideas to pursue, then tested those ideas on potential customers across Edinburgh, and finally worked on pitching their businesses, supported throughout by feedback and advice from experts.

Mentors included Diana Easley, a consultant who has worked for Microsoft, Skype, eBay and Yahoo, and Philip Hannay, Managing Director of Cloch Solicitors, who specialises in entrepreneurialism.

The entrepreneurs were also advised by Cavid Nadirov, founder of GetGuided, a tourism startup that emerged from a previous 3DS event, and enterprise development experts from Edinburgh Innovations, whose LAUNCH.ed service for student entrepreneurs ran the event.

Dedicated and creative

“This was a great event, with so many dedicated and creative students who made great progress in just three days,” said Dora Handrea, Enterprise Executive at Edinburgh Innovations. “It was fantastic to engage with the local community for the mentoring sessions.”

Edinburgh’s 3DS event is part of a global programme that began at the University of Texas in 2008, with a mission to “activate entrepreneurial potential in students of all kinds through experiential education and a global entrepreneurship ecosystem”.

The programme is run across 30 countries, and 3DS alumni have launched 134 companies. Edinburgh’s was the first in the UK, and remains the only 3DS in Scotland.

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