Queen's Innovation Centre

Dunin-Deshpande Queen's Innovation Centre
Dunin-Deshpande Queen's Innovation Centre

Queen's Entrepreneur Develops Malnutrition App for Magu Nagu Malnutrition Free team in India

QyourVenture client, Joe Ajoy, continues to excel on his entrepreneurial journey in collaboration with the Deshpande Foundation India

Friday, August 17th, 2018 | By Joanna Tinus

In his first year at Queen’s University, Joe Ajoy quickly realized that he wanted more beyond his academic degree and started to set high expectations for himself. As an ambitious newcomer from Mangaluru, he felt alone because most of his peers did not share the same interests and he was unable to find a place that suited him. When Joe heard about the Dunin-Deshpande Queen’s Innovation Centre he was thrilled! The DDQIC programs provided a network of motivated individuals with a similar entrepreneurial mindset; a place to share his innovative ideas.

Joe Ajoy started out with his first idea, Reading Glasses, in the QyourVenture program where he became part of a community that would guide him through the process of turning his inventions into a business. Reading Glasses is a device that converts text to speech through your cell phone for language translation applications and for those who are visually impaired. While working on his Reading Glasses venture, Joe did a lot of prototyping in the SparQ Studios Makerspace. With access to 3D printers and other equipment, he was able to speed up the development of his first prototype. Joe's love for SparQ inspired him to become part of the executive team and he later took on the role of interim Director. 

After being exposed to mentors and other professionals, and learning more about how to bring a product to market, Joe decided to shift his focus to another idea. In the Fall 2017 Regional Pitch Competition Joe pitched this new innovation, Leash Technologies, to the DDQIC team and was awarded $4,000. Leash is a device small enough to go in your pocket or purse that alerts you when you leave your phone behind. It pairs with your phone using Bluetooth and can differentiate between your phone being left behind versus stolen to alert you accordingly. Competitors like Tile will track your phone after it is lost, but Leash will prevent it from happening. You can put Leash on your keychain or other valuables to get alerted when they leave your radius as well.

Impressed by his entrepreneurial mindset and aptitude for generating innovative ideas, the DDQIC team presented Joe with a unique opportunity to collaborate with the Magu Nagu Malnutrition Free team at the Deshpande Foundation in India. Joe is working to re-develop an app for monitoring malnutrition in children by comparing biometric data to the WHO standards. Joe has successfully completed the first iteration of the app, which has already been launched, and is working on the next. The basic version of the app indicates whether or not a child is malnourished based on information such as height and weight. Joe is spending the summer with his family in his home city of Mangalore before returning to Queen’s for his third year, and will be taking the opportunity to visit the Deshpande Centre for Social Entrepreneurship in Hubballi to work with the malnutrition team on the second version of the app.