By Press Office 06 December 2019

The Edinburgh based start-up company behind the world's first plant-based, double-ended water bottle, have won the top prize of £15,000 in the Young Edge category at the Scottish Edge awards.

 

S'wheat was co-founded by Queen Margaret University (QMU) graduate Jake Elliott-Hook and his business partner, Amee Ritchie, to address the issue of most reusable water bottles being made from non-biodegradable materials. The S'wheat bottle is made from plants, which makes it completely biodegradable and ensures that it will never end up in landfill or the ocean.

S'wheat's success exemplifies QMU's collaborative approach to nurturing innovation and entrepreneurship. Jake and Amee joined QMU's Business Innovation Zone (BIZ) in 2018 with their idea for a biodegradable bottle.  Through QMU's partnerships with East Lothian Business Gateway, the Merchant Company of Edinburgh and Santander Universities, they have been supported and mentored to fully realise their idea by maximising opportunities offered by the Scottish Institute for Enterprise, Converge and Scottish Edge.

Scottish Edge is the UK’s biggest small business funding competition, supporting Scotland’s most innovative, high-growth potential start-ups with up to £150,000 in cash. The initiative also provides a business support package that includes mentoring, support and signposting to alternative finance. Over £14m in funding has been allocated since the competition began.

Jake and Amee’s win builds on the considerable success that QMU graduates have already had in the competition. Nikki Welch of Quenchable previously won the top prize in the Wild Card category, while Lauren Leisk - a former winner in the Young Edge category - took home the competition's main prize of £70,000 earlier this year for her innovative health food company Fodilicious.

Miriam Smith, Business Development Manager at QMU, said: “This is a major achievement for Jake and Amee. Their win at Scottish Edge closely follows another award of £5,000 they received last week from the Royal Bank of Scotland’s ‘Back Her Business’ competition. We are immensely proud of them and all they have achieved so far.”

 

Notes to Editor

For further media enquiries, please contact Gavin McNee (Interim Media Relations and Content Officer) at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, E: gmcnee@qmu.ac.uk, T: 0131 474 0000.

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