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26 Aug 2020

Innovation lab fires up best of new technology to help Transport for Wales improve customer experience

Labordy arloesi'n sbarduno technoleg newydd wych i helpu Trafnidiaeth Cymru i wella profiadau cwsmeriaid


Credit: Robert Mann

TRANSPORT for Wales has launched the second phase of its innovation and accelerator programme working with some of the best start up innovation businesses around to deliver real customer benefits. 

Working virtually with 11 companies over 10 weeks, Transport for Wales and its partners Alt Labs will take their idea to develop a proof of concept or minimum viable product to present to TfW stakeholders.

More than 100 companies both local to Wales and across the UK applied to take part in the second cohort to join “Lab by Transport for Wales”, making it a tough job to shortlist the final 11.

Ideas include using camera sensors to provide real time passenger counting data, a cloud-based ‘travel assistant’ for organisations that need to manage people-flow and travel demand whilst delivering world-class visitor experiences, and a Mobile app aimed to improve the passenger experience by delivering amazing stories about what travellers can see outside their windows based on location.

Despite the challenges of Covid-19, Transport for Wales has committed to running the next cohort virtually and giving the companies the same dedicated experience.

Cohort 2 began on 26 August and runs for 10 weeks. After that point companies will pitch their ideas, with Transport for Wales deciding which to develop further.

Michael Davies, Insight and Innovation manager at TfW, said: “We’ve been so impressed with the high calibre of ideas that have been pitched to us over this stage of the programme. This has made our job of selecting the best startups for cohort 2 extremely tough.

“TfWL allows both local, Welsh companies, and those further afield to grow, develop and accelerate their business. Importantly, it also presents the opportunity to develop and fast track any new ideas that can make a meaningful difference to passenger experience across our network.”

Lab by Transport for Wales was established in 2019 in Newport to ensure innovation was at the forefront of planning over the next 15 years.

The first cohort successfully pitched their ideas in July, with Clever Citi, Brite Yellow and Passageway being awarded a share of £30,000 and the chance to take their ideas forward with TfW. Another two companies are continuing to develop their ideas alongside TfW.

Adam Foster of Alt Labs added: “We’re really excited following cohort 1 of the Lab by Transport for Wales accelerator programme. We’ve seen first-hand exactly what is achievable in terms of problem solving and developing solutions for Transport for Wales, and how start-ups are making the most of the opportunity that the Lab presents.

“The innovation partnership between Alt Labs who are powering the TfWL programme and Transport for W ales has shown results for cohort 1 so we’re riding that excitement in to cohort 2, as we’ve seen almost double the number of start-ups apply for our remote programme than what we had in cohort 1.”

For more details on Cohort 2 click HERE

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