The ten thousand in seed funding from the University of Sydney will be used to further develop AusMask, founded by Business School students Elias Honor, Isaac Honor and Jack Graham.
The start-up’s sleek anti-pollution face mask is designed to remove more than 98% of the micron particles found in the air of many on North Asia’s most polluted cities.
The ground-breaking product is made with Merino wool and is supplied in a variety of scented Australian botanical ‘air filters’ including Lavender, Tea Tree and Eucalyptus to “help reduce congestion, inflammation and skin problems”.
“This Innovation Week award is testament to the high standard of innovation in the Business School and to the mentoring and tutelage provided to students in the Genesis program,” said Professor Leanne Cutcher who heads the Business School’s newly established Discipline of Strategy, Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
Professor Cutcher went on to say that the “Genesis program is going from strength to strength under the management of Jared Harrison and Jamie Loveday”.
Sydney Genesis, which is open to students and University of Sydney alumni, was established in 2008 with the aim of encouraging innovation and to mentor young social and commercial business entrepreneurs.
“The award won by AusMask is an outstanding result for Genesis and a reflection of the Business School’s commitment to innovation,” said Entrepreneurship Program Manager Jared Harrison. “It also reflects the dedication of the students who have chosen to take on extracurricular activities in this area.”
The founders of AusMask took part the Sydney Genesis start-up program earlier this year and won the ‘Best Business Scalable in Asia’ prize of $5 thousand. Elias Honor, Isaac Honor and Jack Graham were able to learn more about their target market when they visited China recently on International Bootcamp Scholarship from the Sydney School of Entrepreneurship.
The three will be spending the next few months working with postgraduate students as part of the new GenesisNEXT program in the Discipline of Strategy, Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Students studying entrepreneurship will be developing a distribution strategy for AusMask in the Chinese market, where they plan to launch their product in late 2018.
Associate Professor Manoj A. Thomas from the University of Sydney Business School has received the Fulbright Global Scholar Award for his work on the innovative use of low-cost technologies to advance the knowledge and skills of health practitioners in resource-challenged countries.