UCE EY Summer Startup Programme 2017/18
UC Motor Sport Team, Lead Design Engineer
Bachelor Mechanical Engineering with Honours
What project are you working on in UCE?
My twin brother and I are working on a software service called Catalinq. Catalinq helps small online retailers to drive high-quality traffic to their webstore at a low cost. We help bring website traffic to those who struggle with traditional online advertising because it is expensive to get results and hard to hit your target customers.
Where is Catalinq now and how have you progressed by being in the UCE EY Summer Startup Programme?
At the moment we are currently building our MVP. It is not complete but on its way. In the middle of March, we are aiming to have a soft launch to a small group of retailers who will trial our service for two months. After the trial, we will re-evaluate.
Before the Summer Startup Programme, I knew almost nothing about business apart from what I learnt from ‘The Lean Startup’, which should be mandatory reading for anyone starting a business. During high school, I made a tinder/ chat roulette style social messaging app ‘Appair’, and now after being through the Programme, I realised that I was focusing on all the wrong things. UCE has taught me how important it is to focus on your customer first and testing your product before worrying about small details and features because getting people to actually download your app is another whole story.
How did you find the Programme?
I have really enjoyed the Programme, especially the guest speaker, Peter Montgomery. I thought his business was so clever, to take something so simple and use tech to make it really profitable. I have also really enjoyed meeting new people and hanging out and socialising with people of different ages and backgrounds that I would not normally spend time with.
What is your most memorable moment this summer at UCE?
Pitching in front of the external judging panel was pretty memorable, a bit scary and a first time for me.
What advice would you give to a student considering starting up their own venture or considering applying for UCE?
First of all, to definitely do it, even if your venture doesn’t turn out successful, you can apply the skills you learn to other ventures and aspects in life.
What are you working on outside of University and UCE?
I am working with the UC Motor Sport team as the Lead Design Engineer which takes up quite a bit of my time. I also really enjoy mountain biking, skiing and windsurfing.
What are your aspirations for the future?
To go and ride my bike all over the world and ski in Canada and Japan. I would also love to run a mechanical engineering company where I can go on business trips to interesting places.