The three finalists for this year’s Trailblazing Tech Award have been announced by pro-manchester.

The awards recognise early-stage startups pushing the boundaries of technology and inspiring people with ground-breaking solutions across diverse sectors.

Carbon Neutral Fuels, Featherbed Tales and The Path to Independence will showcase their innovative products at the Trailblazing Tech 2024 conference on 21st June at Manchester Central, giving a live demonstration to the audience.

The event brings together some of the leading businesses and tech innovators in Greater Manchester.

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Carbon Neutral Fuels is a technology integrator designing an e-fuels facility which recycles carbon dioxide from the air to make sustainable fuels for aviation. Its approach to tackling climate change is backed by the government, with CNF winning £1.4 million of funding – only 11 months after it was established – to develop this ground-breaking technology. 

Its drop-in replacement fuel represents an exciting viable alternative to current technology options, such as biofuels, and the purpose-led startup is set to grow rapidly as it launches its seed funding round later this spring.

Featherbed Tales is a digital platform enabling the user to quickly and easily create a personalised storybook narration. This is automatically overlaid on to a beautifully illustrated digital storybook, so that a child can read along, enjoy the pictures and hear the voice of a loved one reading to them – reconnecting separated families, comforting children in hospital and creating a legacy of forever memories. 

The personalised nature of the story narration is also extremely engaging – helping engage reluctant readers and enabling children to create their own recordings to build their speech, language and oracy (verbal communication) skills.

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The Path to Independence Ltd says one-third of young people leaving care lose their homes every year and represent 25% of the homeless population, with 41% of them not in education, employment or training. Even more alarming, care leavers are five times more likely to take their own lives. 

The startup empowers young individuals not only to navigate through these concerning statistics but to thrive as they transition out of care. Its app assists every care leaver throughout the UK to become tenancy ready, financially confident, up-skilled, employable and healthy.

“Carbon Neutral Fuels, Featherbed Tales and The Path to Independence are so worthy of the stage at Trailblazing Tech – I can’t wait to see their pitch at the event and which ground-breaking technology the audience will choose as the winner for 2024,” said Nicola McCormick, chief operating officer at pro-manchester.

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