- 23-year-old Rebecca started her business while still at university
- Raised nearly £1m of funding to bring her idea from inception to market
- Winner of the 2015 Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Award for best undergraduate business in the UK
- Identified by industry leaders, including Scottish Institute for Enterprise, as a high growth business of the future
- Backed by Unipart Group
Rebecca Pick, a young Glasgow-based entrepreneur who was recently named by Scottish Development International as one of the most influential women in technology, has launched her first products – a range of lone worker security tech – to market.
Twenty-three year-old Rebecca – winner of the 2015 Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Award for best undergraduate business in the UK – founded her company Pick Protection while still a student at the University of Strathclyde. Since then she has attracted almost £1m of funding which has allowed her to develop a range of security products for lone workers, including a monitored attack alarm, to a market-ready stage.
Pick Protection has grown to a team of nine with 60 years’ collective experience in the security industry and strong tech credentials. The company has the backing of Unipart Security, whose alarm receiving centre will monitor Pick Protection’s alarm devices.
Around eight million people in the UK currently work either in isolation or without direct supervision, and statistics suggest a lone worker is attacked either physically or verbally every nine minutes. Pick Protection’s range of lone worker solutions includes a wearable alarm that is monitored by a BS8484 accredited alarm receiving centre where, upon activation, highly trained operators listen in and access the situation. Once they have verified the emergency they will send the Police as a level 1 response to the user’s location and emergency contacts will be alerted.
Rebecca Pick said: “Growing Pick Protection from the first seed of an idea to a promising young tech company has been a thrilling journey for me and I am delighted to be able to launch our first products. I believe that everyone should feel safe at work, and this safety should be accessible, affordable and reliable. The inspiration behind Pick Protection may not have been work-related – my neighbour at university was attacked and nobody came to help – but after a lot of market research, we have decided to focus the business on lone worker protection.
“The number of lone workers in the UK is growing all the time, yet only around six percent of them currently have protection through monitored safety alarms. However, more and more employers are waking up to the fact that they have a duty of care to ensure the safety of their lone workers. This means there is a huge potential market out there. I believe Pick Protection can be the next high growth tech business to come out of Scotland.”
Pick Protection’s monitored devices will be monitored by Unipart Security’s UK-based NSI Gold Category II Monitored Alarm Receiving Centre in Oxford.
Unipart Chairman and Group Chief Executive, John Neill CBE, said: “We are delighted to be able to support and invest in a young start-up company led by Rebecca. She is exactly the kind of energetic entrepreneur that our country needs to help us succeed in the fast changing world of technology.
“It’s a great opportunity for us to help a young person build a business and for our Group to further develop our experience in growing and nurturing start-up technology businesses.”
To find out more information about Pick Protection, visit www.pickprotection.com
Notes to editors
About Rebecca Pick
Rebecca Pick’s entrepreneurial journey began in 2013 when she took part in the University of Strathclyde Enterprise Pathway Programme and also began an internship with the Scottish Institute for Enterprise (SIE). Shortly afterwards, Rebecca discovered a neighbour had been attacked by a stranger, despite shouting for help. This inspired her to think about solutions to ensure help would come if someone was attacked or felt threatened.
She entered an early stage idea to SIE’s Young Innovators Challenge 2014, received £2,500 prize money and took part in winner’s workshops to help further develop her idea. She continued to enter and win competitions, such as the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Award, which gave her a welcome financial boost.
In 2014, Rebecca was invited to join the University of Strathclyde’s Rising Star Programme, which helps with office space and further support. She was then invited to pitch to angel syndicate, Gabriel Investments, and secured her first significant investment of £60,000. Rebecca secured further funding and support from the Converge Challenge in 2015 when she won third prize, making her the first undergraduate to have won a Converge Challenge award. Last year saw her raise £744,000 from Equity Gap, the University of Strathclyde, Gabriel Investment Syndicate, Scottish Investment Bank and Unipart Group, who have also helped with the product’s delivery.
Rebecca was also named as a winner in the Growth Category at the 2017 AccelerateHER Awards, designed to give female-led businesses in Scotland a platform to promote themselves and potentially attract investment. As a winner, Rebecca was able to travel to California in spring 2017 to meet potential US investors.
Rebecca was named by Scottish Business Insider in May 2017 as one of five Scottish businesswomen to watch this year, and by Scottish Development International in March 2017 as one of the five most influential women in Scottish tech right now – http://www.scotsman.com/business/companies/tech/5-of-the-most-influential-women-in-scottish-tech-right-now-1-4385450
Pick Protection’s range of products
The Personal Guardian, manufactured in Scotland, is the smallest, lightest alarm on the market with a market-leading battery life, and is accredited to the highest lone-working standard – BS8484. It can be easily attached to a belt, lanyard or clothing.
The device is activated by pressing two buttons on either side, and connects to a smartphone via low energy Bluetooth. The device’s recording ability allows staff at Unipart Security’s NSI Gold Category II Monitored Alarm Receiving Centre to confirm whether an emergency is occurring, and can provide the police with information on the user’s exact GPS location.
Pick Protection is also launching a key fob device, a self-managed app and a monitored app, monitored by a BS8484 accredited alarm receiving centre. Users of all tech products will also have access to a high-tech customer portal which offers functions such as reporting and issue logging. To find out more, visit www.pickprotection.com
About Unipart Group
Unipart Group is a leading UK manufacturer, full service logistics provider and consultant in operational excellence. Operating across a range of market sectors, including automotive, manufacturing, mobile telecoms, rail, retail and technology, Unipart offers a breadth of services from third party logistics to expert consultancy. The company, which has its headquarters in Oxford, provides services to a growing range of blue chip clients including Jaguar Land Rover, Vodafone, Sky, Sainsburys and many other household names.
Unipart Group received 100%, the highest rating possible, in the Business in the Community 2016 Corporate Responsibility Index – the UK’s leading benchmark of responsible business. The company also received a national award for Wellbeing at Work award in the Business in the Community’s 2016 Responsible Business Awards and an outstanding achievement in health, safety and environmental management at the International Safety Awards 2017.