ghd Innovation Hive creates a buzz around beauty ideas

If you’ve got an idea for a connected device that could change the future of hair care, ghd wants to hear from you.

The firm, famous for its range of straighteners and other hair tools, has teamed up with tech membership organisation Cambridge Wireless (CW) to launch the ghd Innovation Hive, and hopes to work with SMEs and entrepreneurs who are, er, a cut above the rest.

A new type of accelerator programme, the Innovation Hive will see five chosen companies invited to spend three months from October 2018 working alongside ghd’s R&D team, the CW community and local technology mentors to co-design a prototype connected hair styling device. The work will be funded, and if intellectual property from the programme is taken to market, start-ups may negotiate commercial terms with ghd.

Tim Moore, VP for smart devices at Coty, ghd’s parent company, said: “Putting the capabilities of digital connectivity into the hands of users is the next step for beauty electronics and the best ideas always come from diverse, inclusive teams.

“By nurturing start-ups in the Innovation Hive and aligning their creativity and agility with the experience of the ghd product development team, we will be able to design advanced device prototypes in a shorter period of time.”

Based at the Bradfield Centre in Cambridge, ghd says the Innovation Hive will offer a supportive and fast-paced environment for talented engineers, software developers and user experience designers. It will immerse participants in the user requirements of the beauty industry and involve experts from across the supply chain, from device designers to salon technicians.

Businesses from the Tech Corridor that would like to get involved can apply online. Click here for more information. Closing date for entries is Friday, September 28.