‘Find My Saddle’ is Track Kinetic’s first product. It works in a similar way to ‘Find my iPhone’; a small GPS unit is hidden inside the saddle which can then be used to track its location. It was conceived in response to the rising problem of saddle and tack theft. This is a major problem for the equine industry, particularly as a saddle can cost as much as £4,000.
What makes the product unique is the way that it is powered. Rather than the owner having to go through the hassle of removing and charging the unit it is able to generate power using the motion of the horse. It has also been thoughtfully designed to be sturdy but avoid being obtrusive for the horse or rider.
Jen’s knowledge and passion for horses influenced the direction of the company’s first product as one for the equine market. However, in the future the company looks to expand into providing tracking technologies for other valuable possessions.
On working with Farm491 and the RAU:
The idea for Find My Saddle came from a university group project which Jen decided to take forward to experience the challenge of bringing a product to market. She started working with the RAU’s enterprise department before joining Farm491 as a student member.
Through this she has been able to find mentors, advisors on IP, engineering and finance, and arrange meetings with industry leaders about possible collaboration.
She has also enjoyed the opportunity to work with other entrepreneurs and says that there is a real collaborative atmosphere. In particular Jen has been working a lot with Define, another equine startup based at Farm491, sharing knowledge and contacts so that both companies are able to grow.
Main challenges so far:
Jen feels strongly that she would rather work for herself than somebody else but by being her own boss she has had to take on the challenge of learning to manage people as she collaborates with engineers, designers, legal advisers and manufacturers.
While her drive and enthusiasm has been a great advantage in providing the motivation to start this project she says “I have to make sure I stay level headed and do not let my excitement run away with me. Having a support network that I can use as a sounding board for ideas has been invaluable as an opportunity to take a step back and assess what is going on as well as being a source of reassurance. Farm491 is a fantastic opportunity to create more agritech startups from both inside and outside the RAU.”