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Duke of York programme winners

Pitch perfect for three Scottish companies

Dr Blaise Potard, Co-Founder and CTO of Dialexy, Mónica Camino, CEO of Dialexy, Michael Harkins, Founder & CEO of Turtle Pack, Alison Wood, Director and Founder of Lilypads

Winners (l-r): Dr Blaise Potard, co-founder and CTO of Dialexy, Mónica Camino, CEO of Dialexy, Michael Harkins, founder & CEO of Turtle Pack, Alison Wood, director and founder of Lilypads 


A fun swimming aid for children, a translation technologies company and a student-led social enterprise providing affordable reusable sanitary pads in rural Kenya were named the winners of Pitch@Palace on Tour in Edinburgh.

The event, hosted by Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University, saw 17 budding entrepreneurs pitch their businesses to an audience of 200 CEOs, influencers, mentors and investors.

The three Scottish companies selected to be fast-tracked to Boot Camp at Cambridge Judge Business School in October were Turtle Pack, Dialexy and Lilypads.

The competition, founded by The Duke of York in 2014, supports entrepreneurs with the amplification and acceleration of their business ideas. It serves as a platform to connect entrepreneurs and early-stage businesses with potential supporters and offers ongoing support for the growing alumni network of entrepreneurs.

Livingston-based Michael Harkins, founder & chief executive officer of Turtle Pack, a swimming aid designed for children aged 3-6, said: “It was a huge honour to pitch in front of His Royal Highness. We are super excited to be launching Turtle Pack very soon.”

Mónica Camino, ceo of Dialexy, a web app that uses AI to process and translate official documents in every language, said: “Our first goal for the next year is to complete the development of the product, so that we can involve certified translators working remotely as well as in house and to pilot our technology with the organisations requiring certified translation.”

The host throughout the day and a person responsible for bringing Pitch@Palace 10.0 on Tour to Edinburgh Business School and Heriot-Watt University was the executive dean of the school, professor Heather McGregor.

She said: “We are extremely grateful to The Duke of York and his team for bringing this inspiring programme to Scotland’s capital city and to our university.

“Events like this are incredibly important in today’s interconnected world. Even if the person you want to speak to is not in the room, you can be sure someone here can introduce you and point you in the right direction to help you grow.

“At Edinburgh Business School we teach our students about the power and possibilities networking offers and Pitch@Palace is a perfect example of that.”

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