Imperial changemakers named in community of Europe’s best young innovators

Apr 19, 2021

Scores of student innovators, alumni and researchers from Imperial have been named in this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 lists.
Forbes 30u30

By Joanna Wilson

Scores of student innovators, alumni and researchers from Imperial have been named in this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 lists.

For the past decade, the Forbes 30 Under 30 list has been highlighting young innovators on the verge of making it big, who have made their mark on business and society in the past year. There are lists for three global regions: North America, Asia and Europe.

The 30 Under 30 Europe list has ten categories: Entertainment, Retail & Ecommerce, Sports & Games, Science & Healthcare, Media & Marketing, Art & Culture, Manufacturing & Industry, and Technology and Finance. 30 honourees are recognised in each category, all under 30 years old.

This year’s list includes Manchester United and England footballer Marcus Rashford for his campaign to provide free meals for deprived children and The Crown actor Emma Corrin.

Forbes’ global Under 30 community comprises over 10,000 connected innovators worldwide, including over 1,800 in Europe.

Social Impact

The Social Impact category recognises those who are systemically and sustainably transforming education, business and beyond.

Imperial PhD student Victor Dewulf and graduate Peter Hedley were recognised for co-founding Recycleye. Recycleye is trying to bring transparency and traceability to the waste management industry by using AI to help machines be as precise as the human eye. By training the machines to better identify and sort objects, companies can recycle more.

Recycleye's waste sorting solution
Recycleye’s waste identifying solution

Mechanical Engineering graduate Nate Macabuag was also named for co-founding Koalaa who are tackling problems in the prosthetics industry. Current equipment is heavy and uncomfortable, as well as expensive. Koalaa’s solution is to develop less expensive prosthetics that are soft and modular and can be fitted to anyone in the world through a virtual clinic.

Manufacturing & Industry

The Manufacturing & Industry category celebrates those creating the products, methods and materials of tomorrow.

Cotton is the most widely used natural fibre in the textile industry, yet there are no sustainable ways to produce it. Materra (formally known as hydroCotton) aims to build more agile farming systems that produce more sustainable cotton for the fashion industry. Co-founders John Bertolaso, Edward Brial and Edward Hill are all graduates of Imperial.

The Tyre Collective's wheel device
Credit: The Tyre Collective

The Tyre Collective is developing a device to collect tyre particles from vehicles, a major contributor to the world’s air pollution. Every time a vehicle brakes, accelerates or turns a corner, the tyres wear down and tiny particles become airborne. The team, made up of Innovation Design Engineering MSc graduates Siobhan Anderson, Hanson Cheng and Hugo Richardson, aims to mitigate this invisible form of pollution by capturing it at the source.

Science & Healthcare

The Science & Healthcare category honours those inventing the future from the atom up.

MSc Health Policy graduate Jacob Haddad was recognised for co-founding accuRx, a healthcare communication platform that builds the tools to allow GPs and other healthcare providers to communicate more efficiently with their patients and each other. The company is integrated with 99% of GP practices in England and has messaged more than 30 million patients to date.

Marianna Kapsetaki is a physician, researcher and classical pianist, currently completing a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience in Imperial’s Department of Brain Sciences. She is currently conducting one of the largest studies on spatial memory in stroke patients.

Daniel Pan, who graduated from Medicine (MBBS/BSc) at Imperial in 2015, and is now working as a clinical academic in Leicester, has been recognised for his contributions to healthcare, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. He was part of a group that was the first to show that ethnic minorities are more likely to experience worse clinical outcomes of COVID-19 compared to white patients.


The Technology category celebrates those powering a digital revolution.

MSc Management graduates Kyriakos Eleftheriou and Raouf Yousfi from Imperial College Business School were named for co-founding Terra, a technology that makes it easy for developers to access fitness and health data from wearables and sensors.

Artos Systems, founded by Physics graduate Annika Monari, is trying to solve problems in the event ticketing industry through blockchain. Their tech is designed to help ticketing organisations more efficiently manage ticketing inventory as it moves through the supply chain.

Media & Marketing

The Media & Marketing category highlights those at the new frontier of storytelling.

Fanbytes is a social influencer advertising platform which helps brands to engage with millennials in the most creative ways on social media, co-founded by Mechanical Engineering graduate Ambrose Cooke. His co-founder Timothy Armoo was recognised in the list.

Main image credit: Forbes

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