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The University of Southampton
Web Science Institute

Z21 Innovation Fund

Web-based startups are changing the world. Online innovations have revolutionised the way we all shop, travel and socialise, with tech savvy entrepreneurs ready to pounce on the ground-breaking opportunities of next generation wireless and Internet of Things advances to shape a near-limitless future.

The Z21 Innovation Fund was founded by the Web Science Institute (WSI) in 2017.  Working with the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), a funding programme was set up fund proof of concept projects which had the potential to be accelerated into new businesses and create new jobs in the Solent region. The initiative offered University entrepreneurs access to funding to develop their digital ideas and benefit from a package of support to accelerate the startups towards success.

Funded projects received acceleration support from Future Worlds and included entrepreneurial mentoring, startup video production and access to the Future Worlds Accelerator Space.

Following the five funding calls, 14 projects received funding.  Here are are some of the project successes:


Photo by Oleg Magni on Unsplash


BOON is an award-winning startup that creates personalised experiences for online users without the need for surreptitious tracking.

Image courtesy of Unsplash


TopoMD was created by a team of scientists and mathematicians at the University of Southampton to improve precision and accuracy of disease diagnosis.

Image courtesy of Unsplash


Intro is an app-based platform that uses ultrasonic wireless tech to radically improve the way companies engage with customers in a physical space.

Image courtesy of

Aura Vision

Aura Vision is a video platform that measures and improves shopping experiences producing valuable insights into customer behaviour to help boost sales and marketing performance.



Avian is a cooperative multiplayer game with conservation, collaboration, and altruism at its core.

Photo by Lauren Fleischmann on Unsplash


An app that enables users to quickly and easily swap clothes to get new looks whilst reducing the impact on their wallet and the planet.



Neighbr is a revolutionary borrowing platform for everything.

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From gaming to Covid-19 apps, find out the latest from our funded projects.

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