Bicycle Innovation See.Sense With R&D Tax Credits
A cycling accident sparked inspiration in one man to delve into research & development and create an award-winning bike light business.
After two years with Amplifi Solutions, founder of See.Sense, Philip McAleese, talks about working with them on their bicycle innovation’s R&D tax credit claim.
Keen cyclist Philip McAleese had a cycling accident during his morning commute to work, which led him to realise that the market was missing a bicycle innovation that would improve cyclists visibility to motorists not just at night, but also during the day.
As a result, Philip formed a technology company called See.Sense, to design and develop an intelligent bike light range to fulfil this need.
“We were aware the opportunity was there, and it made sense to engage a specialist to make sure we got the right advice and a fair balance in our tax relief.”
Finding Amplifi Solutions
“Our bookkeepers actually suggested we got the guys in for a chat and although we had another quote, Amplifi Solutions initial estimations were more insightful and accurate than other providers, so we went with them.”
R&D Activity – Day and Night Smart Bike Light
See.Sense wanted to create a bespoke intelligent day and night bicycle lighting system that had:
- Mobile phone connectivity that would control the light unit
- Ability to receive theft alerts
- Could send crash alerts
- Utilise the mobile phone’s features to collect data about commonly used cycling routes, such as accident blackspots, peak cycling times, road conditions, average cycling speed and safety information.
To achieve these objectives, See.Sense had to overcome many uncertainties in the development of hardware, firmware and a mobile app, including:
- How to develop a compact, yet powerful, battery friendly and watertight light unit?
- What would be the most effective flashing protocol for day and night situations?
- Could Bluetooth effectively connect the unit and mobile phone without draining the battery?
- How to send theft and crash alerts to mobile phones?
- How to automatically collect, compress and send data about cyclist routes in real time to a central database?
All their bicycle innovation qualified for R&D tax relief.
Working With Amplifi Solutions
“The whole process was very straightforward, and because we already had everything up to date and allocated to R&D on Xero (an online accounting system), we just had to sit down with the guys and look at staff commitments on projects, while they took care of the rest.”
“Amplifi Solutions were very easy to work with and they made what could be perceived as quite a complex process seem very easy, which is obviously great for us.”
Impact on Business
“Although we never count on or forecast the R&D relief in our cash flow, it’s great to have the nice little haul of cash coming into the business.”