September Activity Report

For this series of entries, I will be explaining the steps I take in developing my startup during my placement year at the Northumbria Business Startup Hatchery. Hopefully, these monthly report-style blogs can be useful to someone in a similar position, who is looking to get started with developing their business idea.

  • Spoke with Carri Cunliffe, accepted onto VRTGO Labs developer list and discussed opportunities to speak at and volunteer for VRTGO Conference & Expo in November.
  • Used the business model canvas to explore a potential pivot towards providing VR mentoring and presentations for educational institutions and their students, then engaged my contacts at Gateshead College with a trail proposal.
  • Contacted Jobcentre Plus looking for business development opportunities or courses in the local area.
  • Joined the local NUOVO society and aNEmates professional meetup groups, to help develop my network of industry contacts.
  • Met with Darren Simpson from Grainger Games and arranged to trail a public VR demo at their flagship store in Jarrow on 24th September.
  • Moved into the Northumbria Business Hatchery shared office space to gain the ability to coordinate, collaborate and operate from a central location in the centre of Newcastle.
  • Contacted the media departments of Sony PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, asking for support or sponsorship in running the public VR demo.
  • Contacted software developers (e.g. Crytek, Insomniac Games, etc.) to ask for access to their titles to bolster the software line-up for the public VR demo.
  • Met with Martin Holcroft from Gateshead College and discussed the possibility of supplying a range of services to the students, providing:
    • live briefs for VR products
    • quarterly progress and feedback meetings
    • seminars on VR and the games industry
    • classroom workshops
  • Met up with Emine Thompson from the Northumbria University Virtual Reality & Visualisations Department and began working on a Newcastle 2065 animated video assignment for their education sector clients.
  • Conducted two consecutive public VR demo days for Grainger Games, which allowed me to analyse the viability of the business and answer some questions about the value proposition, customer segment, cost structure and revenue streams.
  • Negotiated with Grainger Games on their request to extend my promotional VR demonstration into more stores around the country, which would create an opportunity to create revenue.
  • Corresponded with Miguel from Arcus Design who was interested in my portfolio of 2D animation work.
  • Spoke to Bilal who wanted to offer a position as a Unity Developer at his mobile games development business, porting their library of around 200 android compatible games over to iOS.