Aylesbury based FUZE Technologies Ltd have applied for funding from Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson as part of a competition called Pitch to Rich that could see the business receive a funding boost. Having submitted the entry in the ‘Grow’ category earlier this week, the business is hoping to garner as many votes as possible to get through to the next stage with the aim of winning a £250,000 investment.
Launched in 2013, the FUZE is a computing platform built around the popular Raspberry Pi. Having been designed to make learning to program as accessible and easy as possible, the FUZE is in schools up and down the country providing an accessible introduction to real programming – taking a seemingly daunting task back to a simple, fun and easy to learn one. With a built in electronics workstation, it also provides an exciting and safe platform for students to learn simple electronics
Developed by Jon Silvera, the inspiration for the FUZE came from introducing family members as young as seven to BASIC programming on a BBC Micro from the 1980s; playing simple games and writing small programs. “I couldn’t get this out of my thoughts, what if we could make a modern day BASIC Computer in the mould of the BBC / Atari / CBM / Sinclair etc. computers of the 80’s. Would it appeal and could it help to get kids interested in programming again.”
With the addition of coding to the curriculum in 2014, it was clear that teachers needed a helping hand to teach a classroom full of children a subject which had been off the curriculum for decades and this is where the FUZE is so valuable to both schools and children alike. Alongside the physical workstation, FUZE Technologies are providing a modernised version of the language BASIC. From ages six and up, FUZE BASIC provides a more realistic introduction to real programming than visual drag and drop environments, and is far more accessible to beginners than other languages available like Python, Java and C.
With the FUZE now available to buy in Maplin, Toys R Us and Amazon, FUZE Technologies Ltd are now employing seven people, manufacturing the product locally in Buckinghamshire and exporting around the globe, the investment from Sir Richard Branson would help take the business to the next stage.
“In order to get to the next stage, FUZE Technologies Ltd need your support and votes.” Stated Jon Silvera, Managing Director. “New programmers are essential to create and innovate from within the UK, and with every vote we get closer to the opportunity to pitch to Richard Branson for investment. Cash flow and marketing resources are our biggest weakness, and with the investment we can inspire even more children to easily learn a new skill.”
For more information on the FUZE please see www.fuze.co.uk.
To vote for FUZE to Pitch to Rich please visit www.virginmediabusiness.co.uk/pitch-to-rich/grow/fuze-technologies-ltd/.