Founded by Emily Brooke and Philip Ellis, Blaze is blazing the cycling industry with its innovative tech and design.
Blaze won the NACUE Varsity Pitch in 2013, and since then, there has been no looking for this groundbreaking startup. Phil Ellis, 29, said “The Varsity Pitch Competition seems like a long time ago”.
Blaze believes more people cycling improves the cities of the future, by making the roads safer, more efficient and our world healthier.
Blaze has grown and the idea has sustained against all odds. Recalling his time in the competition, “In those early days even getting experience of pitching was valuable, but of course the £10,000 was hugely welcome boost that we invested straight into studies to demonstrate the efficacy of our technology, helping to build our credibility.”
So what has happened since 2013? Phil said, “We continued to build up our retail sales, and direct to consumer sales learning a lot about how to market direct to customers.”
To support their consumer business they have developed 2 further traditional bike lights - front and rear burners-, giving them a bigger hold over the whole retail category.
They have also seen large growth from working with Bike Share schemes, launching variations of their laser projection technology in London and New York. Phil adds, “These contracts are large in value but also provide huge awareness for our innovation, and provide a platform for further innovation.”
So, what’s this successful business’ advice to Varsity Pitch aspirers? “There is always a huge variety of small businesses involved in the competition so whatever your company or vision is, if compelling enough you have every chance to win.” Phil also added, “Varsity Pitch is a great platform to see so many other students and graduates building new inspiring companies, that will give you a major boost!”
In a word, NACUE’s Varsity Pitch meant ‘Supportive’ to Blaze’s Phil Ellis.