A innovative Oxfordshire company has secured vital funding to help it sell a new safety product in overseas markets.
Sigmavision, of Weston Business Park, Weston-on-the-Green, Bicester, has developed a new tool to check the safety of tyres on any vehicle.
The product is a handheld scanner which slides along the surface of tyres and uses 3D scanning technology to accurately measure tread depth and tyre wear.
The TreadReader scanner can be used on vehicles from cars to heavy goods vehicles, buses and trailers, and eliminates the errors associated with manual dip gauges.
The company has also developed drive-over ramps fitted with the same technology.
Now it has been awarded £1 million from the MEIF Proof-of-Concept and Early Stage Fund to help sell the scanner overseas.
The fund is part of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund and supported by the European Regional Development Fund, and managed by Mercia Fund managers.
Dr Andrew Pryce, Sigmavision’s managing director, said: “3D tyre measurement offers major benefits for the global automotive aftermarket and our aim is to make it the industry standard.
“The funding will allow us to rapidly scale production capacity, set up a global sales and aftersales department and accelerate product development.”
Malcolm Johnston, SEMLEP’s Growth Hub manager, said: “Sigmavision is a great success story. It’s using technology to develop new services for customers that will go on to benefit businesses in other sectors.”
Bill Yost, investment manager at Mercia, said: “Sigmavision’s technology allows mechanics and repair shops to make an objective assessment of the state of tyre treads, rather than relying on a visual inspection.
“The vehicle industry recognises it is time for a fresh approach and has shown keen interest in the products.”
Ken Cooper, managing director at the British Business Bank, said: “It’s great to see Midlands companies taking up the opportunities offered by the MEIF.”