Supported by the Berkshire Growth Hub, Reading-based Intelligent Health is changing lives across the UK (and the world) with its innovative physical activity programme, Beat the Street. The award-winning initiative, uses RFID technology (think Oyster cards) to turn entire towns into interactive games, where people earn points as they walk, cycle and run around.
Dr William Bird MBE, CEO and founder of Intelligent Health, developed the idea for Beat the Street from his life-long passion to get people active and connected to each other and nature. The programme inspires people to build more activity into their daily lives by transforming their town or city into an interactive playground, where people tap special cards on beat box sensors located on lampposts across the area.
Katherine Knight, Marketing Director at Intelligent Health, explains: “Most people who start a business have an innovative idea and can bring it to life, but aren’t necessarily business experts, which is why it is important to be able to access independent advice. As a company, we wanted to grow in a structured way.
“The Growth Hub helped us be more analytical in our operations, understand where we have pinch points and identify the steps we needed to take to resolve them.
“The advice we received from our business adviser has been invaluable. We are certainly in a stronger position to move forward now and have a clear plan for the next few years.
“We are passionate about making people healthier and want to be a major force in healthcare to create active and resilient communities. As well as growing our excellent Beat the Street programme, we are also developing more products, moving into workplace health and social prescription.”
The company was awarded a £3.32m National Lottery grant from Sport England, which will see the Beat the Street programme rolled out to a further 59 towns and cities across the South West and East Midlands over the next three years to help over 655,000 people get active.
Commenting on winning this contract, Katherine Knight said: “This contract is a game changer for us. It gives us a national platform to highlight the importance of building activity into everyday life and the chance to grow Intelligent Health nationally and internationally. Working with the Growth Hub has meant we are now structurally ready to embrace this growth.”
To support Intelligent Health’s ambitions to grow overseas, the Growth Hub introduced the team to Enterprise Europe Network (EEN), which is another support programme delivered by Oxford Innovation. EEN will help Intelligent Health to identify suitable partners across Europe who will help further accelerate their growth plans.
Alongside help from the Berkshire Growth Hub, Intelligent Health also independently secured £175,000 investment to support its growth plans from Thames Valley Berkshire Growth Fund, which is managed by the FSE Group on behalf of Thames Valley Berkshire LEP.