From one startup to another, via Chicago and Leicester

A short anecdotal story linking one innovative global startup which launched in Chicago to my own mini startup which launched in Leicester last year?

Back in 2006 I joined MedicExchange to launch a click-to-use software product designed to disrupt the medical imaging market that tied manufacturer’s machinery to their software. When I left the company in 2007 after two trips to RSNA in Chicago (staying at the famous Ambassador East Hotel) I’d also got interested in the property market, thanks to our CEO, who’d also invested in bricks and mortar.

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I did an unusual thing though and instead of buying in London where I worked, I bought a converted factory apartment in the centre of Leicester. Crazy huh? I know, luckily my entrepreneurial drive didn’t completely fail me, and eventually after finishing a contract with Sony in 2012 I got the startup bug again. 

First though after Sony I thought of joining a new promising influencer marketing platform, but the chemistry with the founder didn’t quite happen. But luckily the very next day after I parted company with the founder, I spotted news that the archaeology team at the University of Leicester had confirmed, with expert help from their medical imaging colleagues, that they had in fact discovered the body of King Richard III under a car park in Leicester.

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Dr Jo Appleby, who carried out the initial excavation and analysis.

Coupled with spotting an advert from TripAdvisor’s Holiday Lettings that same week I decided the discovery meant visitors to the city and decided to turn my apartment into a holiday letting. A year on, with my partner Shirley the business is still going strong, with already a few repeat customers, and six top reviews.

Then this week I heard news that Aunt Minnie, the established rival medical imaging platform to upstart MedicExchange, had published a piece on the use of medical imaging tech to verify the bones of Richard III. The article followed the latest paper, titled “The scoliosis of Richard III, last Plantagenet King of England: Diagnosis and clinical significance,” published in Lancet on 30 May. It provides for the first time a complete picture of the scoliosis that plagued the king, who died at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485.

Pictured are Dr. Bruno Morgan (right) the study co-author (with study lead Dr Jo Appleby) and Dr. Piers Mitchell with their 3D model.

I have to admit the report was no coincidence, I contacted Aunt Minnie about the role of the medical imaging team at the University Hospitals of Leicester, better known as the Royal Infirmary. It also got reported in the Leicester Mercury. Funnily enough I even have a radiologist at the Infirmary staying at my apartment this week. So yes, all in all it’s a bit of a long and winding road to follow, but eventually I made it from one startup to another, via Chicago and Leicester, and with a bit of a story to tell too.

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