8 Businesses That Started At University

Universities have long been hubs for innovation and entrepreneurship. In fact, companies like Meta, Google and Reddit all began in college rooms.

Here, we take a look at some companies whose journeys began on campus.


Dynamilis by School Rebound SA


School Rebound Launches AI-Driven Handwriting Improvement App Dynamilis for  Kids in the United States | Business Wire


Thibault Asselborn launched Dynamilis while pursuing a Ph.D. at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland.

This AI-driven app aims to improve the handwriting skills of children aged 5-12 through engaging and playful methods. Developed in collaboration with experts across France and Switzerland, Dynamilis is a blend of scientific research, AI, and machine learning, backed by the input of over 50 therapists and the experiences of more than 20,000 children. Asselborn’s vision for Dynamilis was inspired by his interests in robotics and education, culminating in an innovative approach to handwriting improvement.


Big Sister Swap


Big Sister Swap


In 2019, Hudi, a History of Art student at the University of Bristol, founded Big Sister Swap out of frustration with the high costs of resale apps. This personalised clothes swapping service began in her university bedroom and has since evolved into a thriving business that has saved over 60,000 items from landfill.

Big Sister Swap exemplifies how a simple idea, combined with social media traction and a commitment to sustainability, can lead to a successful, environmentally friendly venture.





Gavin White and Kieran O’Regan, from Imperial College London and the University of Birmingham respectively, founded About:Energy to commercialise their research in battery technologies.

Their software helps industries develop electrified products more efficiently, contributing to faster decarbonisation. Winning initial funding from the Faraday Institution, About:Energy has since raised significant investment and is at the centre of supporting the transition to electric vehicles and other electrified products.


ExpHand Prosthetics


ExpHand | The Studio | Loughborough University


Kate Allan’s final year project at Loughborough University led to the creation of ExpHand Prosthetics, offering adjustable and affordable prosthetic limbs for children. This innovation allows prosthetics to grow with the child, providing a sustainable and empowering solution to congenital limb loss.

Allan’s venture has received widespread acclaim and showcases the potential of 3D printing in medical device production.





Gumbo | LinkedIn


Jacob Strauss, while completing his PhD in Mathematics at Loughborough University, developed Gumbo, a search engine aimed at reducing food waste by helping users find recipes based on the ingredients they have.

This AI-powered tool reflects a growing trend towards sustainable living and demonstrates the innovative use of technology in everyday life.


The Bug Factory


Mealworm Starter Pack - 180g (UK delivery only) – The Bug Factory


Thomas Constant’s project at Loughborough University evolved into The Bug Factory, a company focused on reducing food waste and carbon emissions through insect-powered recycling.

Its eco-growing pods transform food waste into pet food and fertiliser, creating a novel approach to sustainability and recycling.


mOm Incubators


Our Story — mOm Incubators


James Roberts designed the mOm Essential Incubator as a final year design student at Loughborough University, addressing the global need for cost-effective new-born care.

Winning the James Dyson Award for Innovation, the mOm Incubator has since had a tangible impact on new born care across the world, emphasising the role of design in healthcare.




instantprint Reviews | Read Customer Service Reviews of instantprint.co.uk


Founded by Adam Carnell and James Kinsella, instantprint emerged from their university days with a mission to simplify the process of obtaining promotional business cards, posters and flyers for small businesses.

Today, instantprint serves over a million customers, proving sometimes just a simple idea is all you need for success.


These businesses show that even at university, one small idea is all it takes to build a business.

From sustainable fashion and advanced medical devices to tech-driven solutions, these companies highlight the real potential of ideas born on campus.