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Student story

Logan Williams

26 December 2023

Studying towards a Master of Business Administration


"I love that—as an entrepreneur—you find solutions to problems. You innovate, you trial, and you discover new ways of doing things. You go beyond the norm and final alternative, more efficient and effective ways that things can be done."

UCE Involvement:

Summer Startup Programme (2016/17)

MYOB IT Challenge (2017)
NZTA Kaikōura Challenge (2017)
Kathmandu NZ Student Social Enterprise Challenge (2017)
Entré $85K Challenge Top 11 (2017)


Founder and CEO, Biome
Bachelor of Science (Psychology) 
Master of Science (Applied Psychology)

What is Biome and where did the inspiration come from?

I was out tramping one day and was walking along an infected river. I came across a dried piece of didymo and was astounded by its resemblance to raw paper pulp. It was something of a Eureka moment for me and the concept for Biome came from there.

I presented the scientific concept behind Biome at the Canterbury Regional Eureka Science and Innovation competition. Eureka is a competition promoting the development and contextualisation of STEM concept which can improve the world, and where you present in front of leading academic, business, and political leaders. I won the Regional competition and later travelled to compete at the National competition where I received a national award of merit. This gave me the platform to develop the scientific basis (processes) of my company before entering the Summer Startup Programme.

Where is Biome now and how has it progressed over the summer?

It was cool being immersed in the startup environment and being surrounded by leading business people in the Canterbury region. I used my time in the programme to develop the infrastructure behind the company. This involved contacting the Ministry of Primary Industries to gain authorisation to remove didymo from the waterways and what is involved in that process. I also reached out to three leading PhD students at UC who have studied didymo to gain a better understanding of the characteristics of didymo and also so that I can then look into growing it artificially for long term sustainability of the business.

Since the programme finished, I have gained entry into the CDC Mentorship Programme where I will get partnered with a CEO who has experience in my sector. I am applying for the Callaghan Innovation Grant and for the Social Infrastructure Fund grant to develop marketable prototypes. I would then look to use this funding to set up infrastructure to manufacture raw bulk paper, plastic and fabric.

How did you find being in the programme and what support did you get?

Michelle, the Incubator Manager, helped me with my Eureka application and it was from her that I heard about the Summer Startup Programme. I did a bit of research into other students who had done the programme and how they had progressed from participating and decided to go for it myself.

Overall the Summer Startup Programme was an amazing experience. I thoroughly enjoyed being surrounded by a diverse range a like-minded people, who I look forward to working with in the future. It has helped me to develop skills that I had never attempted before coming from a non-business background, particularly those in presenting, networking and pitching.

What was your most memorable moment from the summer?

I would have to say the Final Presentation Evening, it was a great feeling that all of my hard work had finally paid off and to be recognised for it. I also really enjoyed meeting UCE Alumnus, Jorgen Ellis. I found him to be a really inspiring speaker and his talk resonated with me and made me realise that it is possible to make your dreams a reality and be successful at a young age. He broke down those stereotypes that you face as a young person in entrepreneurship.

What advice would you give to a student considering starting up their own venture or getting involved with UCE?

Starting up your own venture is a lot of hard work, you will probably have more than one sleepless night. It’s hard being a student too and having a limited budget, your only option initially is to bootstrap because the only resource you really have is your time. That is where UCE come in, they can provide support and resources that you otherwise wouldn’t have. I would recommend getting involved with UCE and doing the Summer Startup Programme to anyone interested in the startup space.

What do you find interesting or cool about being an entrepreneur?

I love that—as an entrepreneur—you find solutions to problems. You innovate, you trial, and you discover new ways of doing things. You go beyond the norm and final alternative, more efficient and effective ways that things can be done. I like that you are contributing to society not only through your innovations, but also by providing new jobs. As an entrepreneur you put work in and you get a results out of it.

What are you aspirations for the future, both personally and for the business?

In the short term I am working towards finishing my Masters of Science while continuing to work on Biome. I would like to be able to get the company to the point where I will be able to work on it full-time when I finish my studies. I want to be able to apply what I learn through my master’s to the company and let it build from there.

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