Glasgow student wins business competition

Published: 14 February 2002

PhD student Roderick Sutherland is Student Entrepreneur of the year in the 'Business a.m.' awards.

A postgraduate student at the University has won the Student Entrepreneur of the Year 2002 competition run by the 'Business a.m.' newspaper.

Roderick Sutherland, 36, a PhD student who is also a major in the Territorial Army, got his business idea on tour in the Balkans, during regular hearing tests to check for damage caused by gunfire or explosions

"When your hearing is tested by the army in the UK, they use sophisticated equipment, but he locals in the Balkans had nothing useful," Mr Sutherland told 'business a.m.'

"I decided there was a need for an automated and inexpensive piece of equipment that could be used by a large number of people."

He used his degrees in electronics, telecoms, computing and electrical engineering from the Open University and the University of Glasgow to develop the Puretone Audiometer using digital technology.

The device is controlled by a micro- processor which conducts a automated hearing test and then provides a printout and analysis of the results. Mr Sutherland is targeting markets covering industry, healthcare and schools and hopes for 10% profits on £1.2m sales in about three years.

He collected the Student Entrepreneur of the Year trophy and £500 cash at yesterday's Student Business Plan Awards, sponsored by Lloyds TSB Scotland and hosted by Business a.m. and the Scottish Institute for Enterprise (SIE), the government and university-backed body to boost entrepreneurialism among technology students.

[This report is based on the story published in 'Business a.m.'on 14/2/02]


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First published: 14 February 2002