Alert Technology has developed 'Asbestos ALERT' – the first known warning device that’s capable of distinguishing between airborne asbestos and non-asbestos fibres in real-time, and aims to help reduce the risk of prolonged exposure that can lead to diseases such as cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma.
Alert Technology completed its SyndicateRoom round in June 2017, overfunding to £1m.
Despite the fact that asbestos is a category one human carcinogen with no safe level of exposure, it is present in over 3,500 different products globally, and affects a wide range of industries. There are currently no known real-time warning devices for airborne asbestos fibres.
Alert Technology, a spin out of The Select Group of Companies Ltd, has created the Asbestos ALERT which works by using laser light scattering patterns to identify fibres and then determine the change in angular alignment of individual airborne fibres under the influence of an applied magnetic field. The device records this behaviour, using it to make - what the company's internal data demonstrates to be - a real-time assessment of the probability of asbestos being present, to a confidence level of 98%.
Doing so should provide the user with immediate warning if asbestos fibres have been disturbed and released into the air, meaning that ALERT PRO could be used both for real time monitoring and inspection of working environments. The aim is to help reduce the risk of prolonged exposure that can lead to diseases such as cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma.
Alan Archer is the Founder and Managing Director of Alert Technology Ltd and The Select Group of Companies Ltd. He started his first company aged 20 in the construction trades sector and since then his management career has spanned four decades over three continents, with roles in Sales and Marketing in the UK, USA, and Japan. A serial entrepreneur, Alan has experience in product design and development, manufacture, production, distribution, e-commerce and satellite warehousing.
The lead investor
Discovery Park Technology Investment Fund (DPTI) is a £5m equity funding scheme managed by Narec Capital Ltd (NCL) and supported by Kent County Council and the UK government's Regional Growth Fund. NCL set up DPTI to help cutting-edge science and technology firms get their products or treatments to market.DPTI was the lead investor for Alert Technology for this funding round, investing £500,000.
DPTI’s most notable achievements are exemplified by their portfolio of seven investments in an 18-month period across the healthcare and cleantech sectors, with the first exit expected to occur within the next twelve months. By applying both experience and capital at an earlier stage than most typical funds, DPTI feel they can identify exciting companies, enhance their survival rates, and extract superior value for their investors.
[Alert’s] technology is needed on a global basis and has the potential to save lives. Health-related asbestos issues may be well-known and managed in the UK, but a large portion of the world still uses asbestos and will be facing legacy issues for many years to come. Alert is well-placed to become a crucial, life-saving technology business.
– DPTI, lead investor
What investors say
Investor Vince F invested in the first close for Alert Technology:
'I made the decision to invest in Alert Technology because they are local and I know the management team and believe in their capacity to deliver a successful outcome. This is a very exciting and potentially life changing product with huge commercial potential, hence my reasons for investing.'
– Vince F, investor
Bobbie-L and Simon D invested into Alert Technology in the first close:
'We've been aware of the ALERT device for a number of years throughout its development and recognized from the beginning the scope of its commercial potential, not just in the UK but globally. We come from a background in construction and facilities management so we were only too aware of the complications, risks and costs associated with asbestos.
A device such as ALERT can help reduce risk and provide confidence and comfort to responsible contractors and building owners. So when the opportunity to invest was offered to us, it didn't take too much consideration. Alert have the technological lead, evidence of global market demand, scope to continue improving and growing the product range and a number of different channels to generate revenue.
We invested because we believe in the product, the market opportunity, the passion and determination of the management team and potential for us, not only to make good return, but to help get life-saving equipment to market.'
– Bobbie-L and Simon D, investors