Accessibility statement

Computer Science Dragons' Den 2020

Posted on 18 March 2020

Undergraduates go head-to-head in Dragons’ Den style competition.

A cash prize for the most compelling proposal has been awarded to YourSpot by the course’s sponsors Netsells, Piksel and Engineers in Business Fellowship.

Undergraduates from all year groups in the Department of Computer Science have been teaming up to develop tech-related business ideas for the Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship module. The course opened with lectures and practicals covering a range of topics related to tech entrepreneurship and progressed into a project phase where students formed business plans in small groups. On Wednesday 11 March initial ideas were pitched competitively to a team of Dragons comprising leaders of local tech businesses and senior University Enterprise staff. 

The winning pitch was from two first years, George Burke and Douglas Sword, who devised a venture called YourSpot that accurately monitors service utilisation in real-time to help people to make best use of available facilities. 

Dougie and George commented on their experience of the competition so far: "We're both passionate about business, and so we really enjoyed the chance to present our ideas in front of industry experts. There was a lot of hard work involved - we must have run through our pitch about 15 times in the three hours leading up to the presentation - but the experience and feedback we received was invaluable. After a quick break to celebrate, we hope to use the Dragons' suggestions to improve our business plan and pitch ready for the next round!"

As departmental winners, YourSpot automatically qualifies to progress to the University-wide Engineers in Business Competition. 

Also qualifying for the next phase of competition are:

  • Superscription: A service to keep track and manage subscriptions
  • EmployPoint: Streamlining the recruitment process for both applicants and employees

All of the successful teams will now strengthen their concepts before meeting again to pitch at the Engineers in Business Fellowship cross-departmental competition at date to be determined (likely to be held at the beginning of Autumn term). This event will involve significant prize money and an impressive array of Dragons who determine which York Champions progress to the national Champion of Champions event held in London later in the year. Spectators will be welcomed to check out the entrepreneurial talent that’s developing within the Department.