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Six student innovators scoop prestigious engineering awards

6 engineering students

The teams, representing universities from across the UK, scooped prizes at this year’s Engineering in Business Champion of Champions grand final held at the Royal Academy of Engineering on Friday 3 November.

They include the Pipeline Organics team from the University of Nottingham which won two awards for its innovative system that generates renewable electricity from wastewater and the Meta Futura Aerospace team from the University of Southampton which won two awards for its work to transform spacecraft control.

The event is the culmination of a year of enterprise competitions held across UK universities, with thousands of undergraduate and graduates taking part.

Now in its fifth year, the competition – organised by Engineers in Business Fellowship (EIBF) – sees university students showcase their problem-solving innovations to industry experts in a bid to win cash prizes.

Following a coaching day where students were mentored by five Sainsbury Management Fellows, finalists pitched their ideas in a dragons’ den style event in a bid to win a share of the £16,000 prize pot to help them propel their business idea to the next level.

As well as cash prizes, winners also received mentoring from business leaders who are members of the Sainsbury Management Fellows network, plus CV packages from PurpleCV and entrepreneurial books from Cambridge University Press and Double your Price, a book by David Falzani MBE, which covers how pricing works with practical insights, tools and actionable guidance.

2023 Champion of Champions award recipients:

  • Enterprise Award: Pipeline Organics (University of Nottingham) – £5,000
  • Startup winner: Pipeline Organics (University of Nottingham) – £3,000 plus mentorship
  • Big Ideas winner: Meta Futura Aerospace (University of Southampton) – £3,000 plus mentorship
  • Startup runner-up: Global Anthem (York St John University) – £1,500
  • Big Ideas runner-up: Squaser (Lancaster University) – £1,500
  • Best Presentation: PCOSENS (Imperial College London) – £1,000
  • Pre-Show People’s Prize: Dot Stores (University of Birmingham) – £500
  • In-Show Audience Prize: Meta Futura Aerospace (University of Southampton) – £500

Arielle Torres from Pipeline Organics said:

“The support that comes with these awards is exactly what we need right now. We’re at a critical point in our business and this means we’re one step closer to getting to our goals.”

Nestoras Papageorgiou from Meta Futura Aerospace said:

“This money will go straight into developing our first prototype to accelerate the process and increase the different types of capabilities it will have.”

David Falzani MBE, President of the Engineers in Business Fellowship said:

“The finalists did a wonderful job of presenting their business ideas – all of which showed leading-edge innovation.

“We have long since supported engineers to develop business skills through university competitions and we’re now working with more than 42 university partners. In this last year, these competitions had over 8,000 participants and an audience of more than 300,000 students.”

For more information on Engineers in Business Competitions, visit

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