Venture Cup winner combines research and tech to tackle jet-lag

Tuesday 20 November 2018

Dreamers Startup Co-Founder James Esdaile with Professor Aleksandar Subic, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Development)

Dreamers startup co-founder James Esdaile with Professor Aleksandar Subic, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Development).

In summary

  • Startup company ‘Dreamers’ has won $20,000 in seed funding at Swinburne’s Venture Cup
  • The startup developed an app to minimise jet-lag and improve wellbeing
  • Venture Cup is a pitching competition hosted by the Swinburne Innovation Precinct

Startup company Dreamers, won this year’s Swinburne Innovation Precinct Venture Cup, securing $20,000 in seed funding to support the development of the app-based venture.

Combining research and technology, the winning startup has developed an app to minimise jet-lag and improve wellbeing.

With shift workers and travellers often struggling to get a good night’s sleep, Dreamers set out to tackle this issue by developing a self-improving algorithm that provides optimal sleep schedules personalised for the users’ needs.

The algorithm has been packaged into an app that addresses jet-lag, using a simple interface where the user logs flight numbers to obtain a personalised sleep schedule. Dreamers provides a sleep schedule and advice for before, during and after the flight.

Next for Dreamers

Startup co-founder and Swinburne PhD student, James Esdaile says the next step is to grow the team by adding specific skills, such as an app developer, to compliment the team’s existing skillset.

Dreamers will put the winning prize of $20,000 towards app development and marketing.

“The money has a huge impact for us. It opens up so many options to take the product from conception to a seriously high-quality product in a short time,” Mr Esdaile says.

“Venture Cup helped clarify our ideas, provided access to venture capitalists and was a great opportunity to focus on the startup while finessing our pitch,” he says.

People's Choice Award

The audience praised Andrew Dyall’s invention by awarding his startup Bowline Medical the People’s Choice Award.

Dr Dyall, the Founder of Bowline Medical and a Swinburne PhD student, secured one month of complimentary co-working space at the Innovation Precinct and tickets to Startup Grind.

Bowline Medical seeks to make catheters safer through the development of the Cathease Catheter Forceps, designed to reduce infection caused by inserting urinary catheters.

Participating in a clinical trial is an important next step for Bowline Medical.

Dr Dyall plans to prove the Cathease Catheter Forceps make urinary catheter insertion easier and more sterile, confirming reports from clinicians.

“Taking part in Venture Cup clarified the most compelling narrative for my business, and has provided me with contacts that will be of value as I continue to develop the business,” Dr Dyall says.

Venture Cup

Ten startups participated in this year’s Venture Cup, with each team receiving one-on-one coaching from venture capitalists and startup founders.

The competition showcased a variety of startups, from a social impact startup funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to reduce the spread of HIV in Africa, to a device that will help doctors predict the chance of heart disease.

Venture Cup, an annual pitching competition, was hosted by the Swinburne Innovation Precinct at One Roof on 14 November.