Posts tagged #press

Global success story slips through Dragons' grasp

A Scottish entrepreneur who entered the Dragons' Den (Sunday, Sept 4th) has joined the ranks of success stories that got away.

Alison Grieve, from Edinburgh, is a multi award-winning inventor on a mission to change the way the world holds things. On Sunday night she presented the Dragons with her most recent product, the G-Hold: an ergonomic holder that attaches to tablets and other devices, enabling users to comfortably and securely hold their mobile technology.

The Dragons declared themselves 'out', but Alison has watched the sales flood in, bringing in revenue of £150,000 since filming took place, double the amount she had looked to raise in the Den. Her company has scaled up rapidly, moving to larger premises in August and increasing its assembly team, based in Scotland, to produce the 10,000 G-Holds required monthly to meet demand. The growth stems partly from the product's success on the Home Shopping Network (HSN) in the US, but also from large tablet rollouts in education, healthcare and corporate sectors.

"I am very grateful to have experienced the Den and would do it all again," Alison said. "Of course, it's much easier to say that from the context of our recent successes but having been on this journey for seven years, I knew I would take positives away from meeting the Dragons regardless of what happened next."

Alison first started developing patented 'handholding' technology in 2010 for the foodservice industry, launching a range of non-toppling trays, branded Safetray. A former waitress, Alison came up with her first invention after witnessing a spectacular accident involving a tray of champagne glasses toppling over at an important function.

"Our mission has always been to broaden the use of our handholding technology across multiple industries and applications. Once we had proven our concept, we saw a massive opportunity to develop new technology for mobile devices. And with almost a billion tablets having shipped since the launch of the first iPad, we are now reaping the rewards of that decision."

The ergonomic benefits of the G-Hold have been validated by various muscular skeletal experts:

"The last few years have seen a significant rise in the number of kids with neck and back pain, which clinicians increasingly put down to the use of hand-held devices," explains Gavin Routledge, Vice Patron of the British School of Osteopathy. "The G-Hold design ensures that it massively reduces the strain on neck, shoulder, arm and hand; making for pain-free use of tablets."

The G-Hold is already being used across 100 schools in Aberdeenshire, Apple Distinguished Programme CalStateTEACH and most recently tech solution company XMA, feeding into the Scottish Government National Framework for Tablet Devices in Education. The company anticipates G-Holds fast becoming a standard part of the tablet tool kits provided across Scottish schools and further afield.

Aside from its health benefits, the brand has also been growing in 'cool factor' with celebrity users including former Gadget Show presenter Suzi Perry, Grammy award winning Gregory Porter, Scotland’s rugby team coaches and physios and sports presenter Lee McKenzie.

Alison is currently in Berlin at the IFA consumer electronics trade fair and intends to capitalise on the rise of augmented reality (AR), with games such as Pokémon Go and 360 degree videos creating greater need for handholding technology.

"My prediction is that AR will soon be a part of everyday tablet usage, particularly in education where traditional text books can come alive, engaging children in learning like never before. The G-Hold supports that experience physically, comfortably placing the whole world in your hand."

The G-Hold is available for sale online and in various retail outlets in the UK, Europe and the US. More information about Alison and the product can be found at www.g-hold.com.

Issued by Pagoda Porter Novelli on behalf of G-Hold. Media Contact: Barbara Fraser on 0131 556 0770, Barbara.fraser@pagodapr.com

Posted on September 4, 2016 and filed under Press, Television.

Greg Shultz writes about Safetray's journey


Greg Shultz wrote an article for TechRepublic about our sister product, the G-Hold, but he also talked about Safetray's journey. You can read the full article here.

"The origin

The story behind the genesis of the G-Hold is just too good to leave out, as it truly exemplifies the notion of the entrepreneurial spirit at work. A person seeing a problem, developing an innovative solution, turning it into a budding business, and then later successfully applying the core of that invention to solving a problem in a completely different industry altogether.

After witnessing a waitress spill the contents of her serving tray, Grieve came up with an idea for a new serving tray with a built-in clip on the bottom of the tray (Figure A). The clip fits snugly between your fingers and provides you with a solid hold on the tray, thus making the act of balancing a tray full of drinks that much easier. She called her new product the Safetray."

Posted on November 10, 2015 .

Safetray inventor interviewed by Informed Edinburgh

Spotlight On: Alison Grieve, Safetray Products Inventor and Entrepreneur

We catch up with local inventor and entrepreneur, Alison Grieve. She explains how one simple idea led her to create her revolutionary rage of Safetray Products which are now available all over the world.

How long have you lived in Edinburgh and what brought you here?

I was Glasgow-born, but moved here when I was seven. I lived here until leaving school when I scooted off for the best part of a decade. I returned in 2004 to have my twin boys because there really is no place like home when you become a mama.

Tell me more about your business, Safetray Products
I used to run an events business.  I invented the Safetray after witnessing a spectacular accident at one of our high-end events. A waitress lost control of her tray and dropped dozens of full champagne glasses all over the floor, smashing everywhere and causing embarrassment and expense. I started wondering why we still use the same old, dangerous design for carrying glasses and that’s when the idea for a discreet, retractable clip on the underside of the tray came to me. It slips between the server’s fingers and allows them to use their knuckles to help to control the tray, preventing it from overbalancing.

After patenting the invention and enlisting the help of Glasgow product designers, Fearsomengine, to source the manufacturer, we commenced production initially in China but then moved it to Scotland. The Safetray is now exported to 17 countries worldwide and is used in venues such as the Sofitel in Lyon, the Hyatt Regency in Dubai and Sodexo, USA.

We now have a few more products in development, including a mirror tray which looks as if stemmed glasses are magically floating through the air, and a disco tray with embedded LEDs.

 

Safetray featured in The Scotsman

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Safetray inventor Alison Grieve was chosen as a case study in the Scotsman newspaper, 10th December 2013, to talk about intellectual property

Firm grasp of patent laws serves Safetray inventor well

One of the best steps which Edinburgh inventor and entrepreneur Alison Grieve took with the development of her Safetray products was to protect her intellectual assets.

She consulted experts in the field and decided to go for a patent for her product, which is a simple but brilliant design that has revolutionised safety for the catering industry - as the name suggests, Safetray makes serving safer.

Grieve would encourage all inventors and developers to get expert help, especially when it comes to overseas markets. She also sounds a warning for those who want to protect their intellectual property via a patent.

"Many innovators make the mistake of opting for the lengthy and highly expensive patenting process without realising the complexities of this system," says Grieve.

"The majority of new product designs, no matter how unique and innovative in form, do not fulfil the patenting requirements set out by the UK Intellectual Property Office. The four criteria an invention needs to meet in order to secure its patent are that it must be novel, involve an inventive step, be capable of industrial application and must not fall within one of the specifically excluded categories - software, for instance, can be patented in the US but not in the UK.

"Several searches through some of the world's most extensive databases of patents assured us that nothing like the Safetray had ever existed. The closest thing to it was a patent from the early 1920s involving a strap nailed to the bottom of a tray.

"It filled me with a sense of both pride and wonder to think that nobody had thought to advance the concept for almost 90 years. I wonder now how many other inventions there might be floating around, as yet undiscovered and unclaimed, awaiting their recipient's flash of inspiration."

Grieve now has patent protection worldwide for the Safetray and is currently launching a new invention, the G-Hold, which is designed to grip tablet computers.

That's more good news to add to a tale of Scottish success.

Posted on December 10, 2013 .

Safetray featured in Dutch magazine Proost

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Safetray is a featured product in cool Dutch hospitality magazine Proost.

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Proost (which means Cheers) focuses on the cutting edge of the Dutch bar and restaurant scene, so of course Safetray is one of their favourite things. Safetray is available to buy in the Netherlands from RET Company - you can call them on +31 (0) 641 390 039 or visit their website here.

Posted on September 10, 2013 .

Dutch courage with Safetray

Safetray has received a five star review from Netherlands hospitality site Horeca Trends.

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You can see the full review here, which, roughly translated, says:

"Sometimes a server in a restaurant drops a tray accidentally and knocks over all the drinks. With the 'Safetray' this will not happen again soon. There is an 'All-important clip' placed under the 'Safetray' which will easily support your fingers, so the tray will be much more stable. A useful gadget for restaurants!"

We also had the following lovely testimonial from Theater aan de Parade, Hertogenbosch:

"I ordered several online because we work a lot with new catering staff. Positive reactions and we have seen a reduced number of wasted drinks only one month after purchase!"

Customers in the Netherlands can order their Safetrays online here: www.safetray.nl

Posted on June 5, 2013 .