Mezzo Labs, a marketing analytics consultancy based in London, and the University of Westminster’s relationship was founded on the desire of the academic team to ensure industry relevance in their courses and of Mezzo Labs to support the University in producing industry ready graduates.
This co-creation approach to course design formed the foundation of a collaborative relationship and the understanding that Mezzo Labs had ambitious plans for growth and was exploring the use of technology and automation to improve the profitability of its services.
The company had good knowledge of its clients and their workflow and, in this, had identified how much time and budget was spent trouble-shooting errors. Discussions with the University’s academic experts from the School of Computer Science and Engineering fleshed out an innovative idea for developing a product using Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence with a user-friendly interface to address this problem.
Given the nature and requirements of the project the best solution was to deliver a two-year collaborative research project with a dedicated member of staff to undertake the product development and manage the project. Mezzo Labs and the University applied for, and were successful in receiving funding from Innovate UK, for a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP).
As a result, Mezzo Labs is shifting its long-term growth strategy from selling services to selling technical solutions including support services and training, with emphasis on machine learning. The target markets are national and international, having established during the project a new office in Hong Kong and plans to open more in the future. From a total project value of £150k, the company is forecasting that over the next three years the product developed will generate £2 million. The graduate employed on the KTP project is now employed full-time in the company and will use his KTP Associate experience to supervise and mentor the new KTP Associate that will be employed on the second Mezzo Labs KTP project that has been approved by Innovate UK.
Adrian Kingwell, CEO of Mezzo Labs, Ltd said: “We have been thoroughly impressed by the project team throughout the lifetime of this project – from idea conception through to project completion. Close collaboration between the academic and professional team at the University and the project team here at Mezzo Labs ensured that the project met its milestones and deliverables on target. The expertise and inquisitive nature of the KTP Associate, supported by the academic team, meant that we developed a cutting edge technical solution which will give us a clear competitive advantage in the market. We have been so happy with this project that, in addition to a second KTP project, we are exploring more ways to collaborate with the University.”