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07 July 2023

Oxentia wins funding for joint AI project

July 7th 2023

Oxentia, in partnership with The National Centre for Creativity enabled by AI (CebAI) have secured UKRI funding to test the feasibility of a new AI-powered business tool, Business Sparks. This ground-breaking co-creative tool is being developed to help revolutionise the process of developing business strategies and advice for clients.

Unlike existing tools such as AI-driven chatbots, Business Sparks combines curated expertise with AI reasoning. The tool explicitly guides users to explore ideas, develop different approaches and discover larger numbers of more innovative business insights for SME clients.

Due to the number of start-ups and SMEs and their significant contribution to the UK economy, if successful, this tool could boost economic growth and increase productivity for both consultancies using the tool, and for the high-growth companies that benefit from more cost-effective yet expert advice. It could lead to more equitable and accessible advice, which will benefit social mobility and inclusion.

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, greenlit the collaboration through its recent Feasibility Studies for Artificial Intelligence Solutions funding round. UK registered businesses were invited to apply for a share of up to £5 million in grant funding to develop innovative solutions using artificial intelligence (AI) to address business challenges and opportunities.

Professor Neil Maiden, Director of CebAI at Bayes Business School (formerly Cass), said:

“AI tools hold the promise of being able to deliver expert advice in a more cost-effective way, at scale. However, existing ‘off the shelf’ AI tools like ChatGPT are poorly tailored to specialist applications such as innovation management. Business Sparks adds inputs curated by experts at Bayes Business School to ensure the AI-powered tool delivers high-quality outputs that business users can rely on.”

Steve Cleverley, Chief Executive Officer at Oxentia, said:

“If we can successfully test the feasibility of AI tools to assist expert innovation management consultancy, Oxentia will be able to offer new products and services, which we expect to lead to increased employment, due to the human-in-the-loop nature of the Business Sparks tool. While it’s hard to quantify the magnitude of this benefit, we are confident that it will be a net positive effect, supporting, rather than displacing or replacing, highly-skilled jobs.”

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