Marita Cheng, has taken out the top prize - the Innovation Excellence Award - at the fifth annual TECH23 Awards in Sydney. 2Mar Robotics also picked up the ATP Innovations’ Explorer Award - which includes return flights to Silicon Valley, five nights’ accommodation and hosted introductions in the Valley - in addition to three other awards.
2Mar designs and manufactures a voice and iPhone controlled robot arm for people with spinal cord injuries, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, cerebral palsy and Parkinson's. It can be mounted onto the wheelchair, bedside table, kitchen, or bathroom. 2Mar extensively interviewed potential end-users of the product before beginning the project, ensuring that the design and manufacture was entirely driven by what is useful to the end-user.
23 starts-up from a range of sectors including robotics, app development and software-as-a-service vied for the prizes, which ranged from meetings with mentors to tens of thousands of dollar, awarded by a panel of investors and start-up veterans.