27 Feb 2014

REALRIDER® motorcycle app lands deal with Newcastle Honda dealership

The founders of a new motorcycling app supported by Newcastle Science City are on track for success after signing a major deal with Honda dealership, Newcastle Motorcycles.

The app, which is being piloted by the North East Ambulance Service, is the first of its kind to help reduce the number of motorcycling fatalities on the UK’s roads. The new technology, which works by downloading an app to a smartphone, was devised by entrepreneurs and motorcycling enthusiasts Zoe Farrington and Andrew Richardson.

The deal will see the app handed out free of charge with every new Honda bike sold by Newcastle Motorcycles, reaching a potential 50,000 bikers across the North East.

The device which was developed with support from Newcastle Science City and Rivers Capital, automatically detects if a rider has been involved in a crash by using motion sensors which send an alert to the rider’s phone. If the alert isn’t cancelled, the app automatically contacts the ambulance service with the location and pre-programmed medical details of the rider.

Former Pride Valley Foods entrepreneur, Hossain Rezaei, took an interest in the app and has recently come on board as chairman of the company.

Rezaei said: “REALRIDER® is an extremely exciting business concept with genuinely unique features and innovation which also has significant commercial potential. The management team demonstrated their considerable expertise in this area and their passion for the market.

“Their determination from the outset was something that encouraged me to back them and their continued drive to make the business successful prompted me to become chairman of the business. I think the business has huge potential and it’s exciting to be supporting significant technology developments right here in the North East.”

Craig Smith, dealer principal at Newcastle Motorcycles, said: “I’ve been talking with Andrew Richardson for nearly a year, and the system is now reaching a level of maturity where we really feel we can get behind it. We’ve recently opened our own training school and it’s clear one of the biggest obstacles new riders often have is getting it past their loved ones that they are getting on a motorbike.

“To be able to reassure new riders, and those who love them, that there’s a Smartphone App which can track their ride and notify the emergency services in the event of an accident really is fantastic. Many new riders ride alone to build up confidence before heading out with others, so for these riders especially the REALsafe® feature gives real security.”

The app also records routes and synchronises with realrider.com where subscribers can view, edit and share their favourite rides.

Newcastle Science City provided business support to help the company through its early stages and Rivers Capital Partners invested in the business from the North East Angel Fund, which led to the development of the app and website.

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