Supersonic speaker: Swansea Engineering’s Dr Ben Evans at Venturefest 2016

One of the 1,000mph BLOODHOUND Supersonic Car (SSC) design team from Swansea University will play a key role in this year’s Venturefest Wales 2016, which aims to inspire, encourage and support business growth and innovation in Wales.

Dr Ben Evans with BLOODHOUND SSC












Dr Ben Evans (pictured, with the BLOODHOUND SSC), Senior Lecturer in Aerospace Engineering in the University’s College of Engineering, will give a keynote speech at the investment and collaboration event on Wednesday, September 28, which returns to the SWALEC Stadium in Cardifffor its third consecutive year.

Swansea University’s primary role in the 1,000mph (1,609km/h) BLOODHOUND SSC land speed racing car initiative has been the contribution of its expertise in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) research, with College of Engineering researchers working as part of the design team on the aerodynamic design of the supersonic car.

‌Dr Evans, who is responsible for the CFD simulations of the car’s aerodynamics, will speak alongside Richard Noble OBE, the renowned entrepreneur who held the land speed record for 14 years between 1983 and 1997 with Thrust2 and Thrust SSC, the first ever supersonic record breaker.

Amid the low risk culture of today’s world, Richard Noble specialises in developing high risk ventures and will explore the business benefits of original and unconventional thinking if you truly wish to break through your barriers to success.

Dr Ben Evans said: “The BLOODHOUND SSC project is entering its final and most exciting stage as we prepare for the first record attempt in October 2017. Swansea University’s College of Engineering has been instrumental in the project’s success to date, having been a key technology provider since day one in the early concept stages back in 2007.

“I look forward to sharing details of our innovative work at Swansea, which has played a key role in the development of BLOODHOUND SSC and has again thrust Engineering at Swansea on to the global stage, with delegates at Venturefest Wales this September.”

Venturefest 2016 logo‌This year’s Venturefest Wales event will focus on breaking through the common business barriers that Welsh business leaders and entrepreneurs have identified are holding them back, as well as bringing together investors with academics, entrepreneurs and innovators to create meaningful business partnerships.

Having conducted market research to understand what Wales’ businesspeople view as the main barriers to growth and success, the free event will tackle issues surrounding the six key business themes identified including: sales and business development, planning and forecasting, people development, marketing, recruitment, and technology and will have a major focus on funding for those innovative ideas and entrepreneurial businesses.

The event will include three expert panels consisting of individuals and organisations who are funding business growth at the various stages of Seed Investment; Second Stage Growth and Series A. There will also be a funding forum where a business and their investor will tell their funding story and give pointers to those in a similar situation.

In addition to keynote speakers, workshops and panel debates, Venturefest Wales will offer delegates the opportunity to view and test the products and services at the cutting-edge of Wales’ business scene, discovering some of the best people and investment opportunities the region has to offer.

Delegates can also expect an environment that blends businesses of all sizes from startup, growth, SME, and corporate together with universities, government bodies, investors, consultants and representatives from professional services, with a view to connecting delegates with like-minded visionaries to share knowledge, ideas and networks.

Ashley Cooper, Chair of Venturefest Wales, Director of Catalyst Growth Partners and member of the Regional Entrepreneurship Accelerator Program (REAP) panel, said: “We are aiming to build on the significant success of previous Venturefest Wales events, which saw nearly 1,000 delegates cross the threshold last year alone in a bid to form tangible collaborative partnerships with other professionals. Venturefest will provide solutions to a range of key barriers that routinely restrict business growth irrespective of sector.

“It is essential that businesses, whatever their sector or stage of growth, have the ability to learn from those who have already done what they want to do; whether that be in innovating a new product, accessing a new market, joint venturing with a University or Corporate, or recruiting the right people to position the business for the next stage of funding - and then finding the right funder. 

“This year’s Venturefest is focused on giving delegates the impetus to break through their own business or personal barriers and to make a step change in the accelerated growth of a business. If visitors take away one thing that makes a difference to their business, then it was worth their time to be there.”

Key partners in Venturefest Wales 2016 include Innovate UK, Welsh Government, Cardiff University, University of South Wales, Finance Wales, Cardiff Metropolitan University, and Swansea University.

For more information on this free event, visit, or follow @venturefestcymru on Twitter.

Find out how a budding entrepreneur and Cardiff-Based tech business owner collaborated to help launch a new app following a chance meeting at Venturefest Wales.