Neurovalens founder wins Barclays entrepreneur award

Dr Jason McKeown

A BELFAST innovator has won two regional accolades at the Barclays UK-wide Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

Leading neuroscientist Dr Jason McKeown, chief executive of Neurovalens, has taken the health tech sector by storm with technology that non-invasively stimulates the brain, allowing neurological issues to be treated with revolutionary wearable devices.

He was selected as the Scotland and Northern Ireland winner in the Start-up Entrepreneur of the Year category and has been awarded an Eagle Labs Innovation Award.

As the sole Northern Ireland company to be listed in the UK wide awards, he and his team will now compete against the most innovative businesses at the national awards tin London in October.

Neurovalens' first commercial product, Modius, is a headset that influences the part of the brain responsible for appetite and fullness, allowing the entire weight loss process to become easier and more enjoyable.

The company, born out of Barclays Eagle Lab at Ormeau Baths in 2016, has gone on to become one of Northern Ireland's fastest growing start-up companies.

Since launching Modius in August last year with just three staff, the company has sold more than 8,500 units and through a listing with Amazon the product has been shipped to 85 countries across the world.

Neurovalens now employ 30 people and operates an online community, Modius Life, where users have completed over 300,000 hours of sessions. The users of the product are seeing an average of 8 pounds lost in just a few months of use, with the top 100 users currently having lost an average of almost 30lbs.

Dr McKeown said: “I am delighted to have won two regional Barclays Entrepreneur Awards. Thank you to everyone who has supported Neurovalens on our journey so far. I have always been driven by the belief that, together, science and technology have tremendous potential to improve the lives of millions of people across the world.

“Although we develop the technology in several medical areas, we decided that our primary focus, Modius, be on the area of weight loss. The obesity epidemic of my generation is an ongoing issue that is fast becoming normalised with no real positive solutions in place.

“My team and I work hard to create a community where people feel supported on their weight loss journey, from nutrition to fitness and we are thrilled with the positive results so far. Our vision is to transform the way people see weight loss and to be the global leader in other neuro-technology solutions - so watch this space!”.

Christopher Murray, relationship director at Barclays, said: “Neurovalens was one of the first companies in the Barclays Eagle Lab in Belfast and it has been amazing to watch the company grow from strength to strength over the past two years with an annualised revenue of $5m. I'm pleased Jason has been recognised for his vision, innovation and achievements adding value to the local economy and creating employment.”

The awards, now in their third year, highlight and recognise the unique, original and positive ways that entrepreneurs from the UK are changing their industries, the economy and society.

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