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UK-Canada AgeTech cohort announced

Posted: 11th May 2023

Thirteen innovative companies from across the UK and Canada have been selected to develop their healthy ageing solutions as part of an international innovation exchange programme.

The UK Canada AgeTech Innovation Exchange called on businesses with products that have the potential to improve the health and well-being of older people to apply to take part in an in-person international exchange visit.

It is fantastic to be a partner of this innovation exchange programme and to see amongst the cohort some of the companies we have supported to further develop their ideas such as Ufonia and Bridgit Care. Over 60 companies applied for a place in the coveted programme, with a total of eight UK companies and five Canadian companies invited to take part in the in-person exchange.  Over the coming months, they will be supported by leading experts with in-depth knowledge of the healthy ageing innovation ecosystems within each country, from national healthcare providers, academia and industry. An additional 31 companies have also been selected to benefit from a related virtual programme of support.

The successful UK companies are:

The Canadian companies selected are:

The companies all have an innovation that addresses one of the competition priorities areas: ageing at home; health care and health service delivery; cognitive and mental health; and autonomy and independence.

The Canadian companies will visit the UK in mid-June, to coincide with NHS ConfedExpo, and the UK delegation will then visit Canada later that month, to coincide with the COLLISION event in Toronto.

The programme is funded is funded by the UKRI Healthy Ageing Challenge, delivered by Innovate UK and ESRC and led by the Northern Health Science Alliance (NHSA) with the following partners: Department for Business & Trade; the four northern Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) from the UK – Health Innovation Manchester, Yorkshire and Humber AHSN, Innovation Agency (North West Coast AHSN), AHSN for the North East and North Cumbria; and AGE-WELL and Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) from Canada.

Dr Mandy Dixon, Executive Lead for Corporate Engagement and Cluster Development, who leads the Healthy Ageing Programme at the Northern Health Science Alliance (NHSA), said: “We are thrilled to have seen so much interest in this exciting new initiative which will bring two countries together to collaboratively work on solutions that address key healthy ageing needs. Improving the health and wellbeing of people as they age is a particularly challenging area for both countries, and we hope that our partnership working will see great innovations and ideas come to fruition and will also lead to further investment and growth in this sector.”

Dr Alex Mihailidis, Scientific Director and CEO at AGE-WELL, Canada’s technology and aging network, said: “Canada and the UK have much in common with respect to the challenges and opportunities around aging. AGE-WELL supports numerous innovative Canadian companies in AgeTech, and we are excited to see the potential of such companies being made available to older adults in the UK through this Innovation Exchange. Similarly, we look forward to the innovation that selected UK companies will bring to Canada. This exchange builds on a track record of engagement and collaboration between AGE-WELL, CABHI, the AHSN Network and the NHSA and holds great promise for future impact in both countries.”

Dr. Allison Sekuler, President and Chief Scientist at CABHI, said:

“We’re proud to support the UK Canada AgeTech Innovation Exchange, fostering the growth of innovative companies addressing older adults’ needs worldwide, and building on CABHI’s longstanding national and international partnerships in the aging innovation ecosystem. This collaboration will enrich lives in Canada, the UK, and beyond, and highlights the value of international partnerships to accelerate innovation. We are excited to see the positive impact these companies will have through the Exchange, and through our joint commitment with all the partners to advance healthy aging solutions globally.”

Chris Ward, Innovation Lead, UKRI Healthy Ageing Challenge, said: We’re really encouraged by the level of engagement and the quality of innovation that has been identified by this exciting new international exchange programme. The high levels of collaboration and aspiration being created between the expert teams brought together across the UK and Canada is exemplary. We hope this shared initiative will stimulate novel insights, new commercial opportunities and significant onward investment to enable inspiring technologies to positively transform our ageing experiences.

Find out more about the exchange programme here