My journey to becoming an entrepreneur

Luca under cardboard boxes, Arthur trying to pull him out
Arthur and two other King's alumni have set up Deepfinity, a parcel tracking software company.
By Arthur, BSc Computer Science with Robotics (Alumnus)

Studying computer science and robotics at King’s College London offered me unrivalled opportunities. Had I wanted to pursue a corporate career and work for large consulting or tech firms I would have had the opportunity (many of my classmates went on to work at Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, Google and Mackenzie). My heart however was drawn to the entrepreneurial journey and King’s offered a perfect environment for starting a company.

Firstly, studying Computer Science with Robotics gave me an immersive dive into the world of technology. I learned the fundamentals of computer science, understood the technologies that surrounded us and was given a glimpse into the cutting edge of research. Our education did not end at learning algorithms or software engineering, we were taught how to design applications, plan and project manage. These were extremely critical skills when starting Deepfinity (our company). Despite not writing a single line of code for the product (Internal Parcel Tracker), I was able to design it and had a strong grasp of what was technically possible.

Sketching out initial plans for the post tracking software

Having a technical skillset and an understanding of technology allows you to see business opportunities others do not. The idea for our flagship product came when we were living in King’s student accommodation and noticed how much time the receptionists spent managing parcels daily. At that time, I had come across the leaps made in Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and saw its potential for helping the receptionists. Had I not been studying computer science I would not have been exposed to the  technology and seen the opportunity to apply it to internal parcel tracking. Furthermore, if I were not in the Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences, I would have lacked the friends to bounce these ideas off and eventually start prototyping the product.

One of the biggest benefits of studying Computer Science with Robotics was that I was surrounded by excellent engineers and software developers all the time. As the course progressed, I built friendships and kept on thinking of new products and companies. Once I decided on an idea, I effectively already had a super good team that was ready to rock and roll. Luca, my co-founder and Chief Technical Officer (CTO) was a one of my course mates and our friendship grew as we worked on coursework together and ran the Robotics Society. A lot of non-STEM students struggle to find technical team members as these programming/product development skills are in high demand.

King’s offers one of the best entrepreneurial support programs in the world. King’s Entrepreneurship Institute runs a range of workshops and programs to take student’s ideas into fully fledged companies. The flagship of these projects was the King’s20 Accelerator. The program was incredible, we got amazing office space, mentorship and work environment for a year. We were also able to secure grant funding that enabled us to build upon the first prototypes of the product. Most importantly we met our third co-founder, Alan Abdo, at King’s20 and were able to push the business to the next level.

Since we started the business in the second year of university, we have become revenue generating with our software deployed across eight cities in the UK. After finishing my masters, I will be going full time to work on the business and grow it beyond the borders of the UK.

Read more…

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