16 for ’16: Sedgefield-based PolyPhotonix are poised for great things in 2016
An exciting entrepreneur, an exciting company and an exciting business park… Well that’s not a bad story. First of all, there’s Richard Kirk, an entrepreneur who was an artist in Paris for many years, before going on to found the exciting company PolyPhotonix. This company finds itself at the forefront of its field using lighting technology to treat some very debilitating medical problems.
Most recently, it has been responsible for the development of a sleep mask which apparently directly helps those suffering from diabetic retinopathy. This affects many thousands of diabetes sufferers and if left untreated will damage the back of the eye, potentially leading to blindness.
PolyPhotonix was founded in 2008 and was supported by £14m of government grants to develop its place in the OLED lighting materials market, which is currently forecasted to be worth around £1bn by 2018. With sufferers of this chronic disorder at around 102m globally, there could be a very significant demand for Mr Kirk’s product.
The company is at one of those key moments when it moves from pure development into being able to drive earnings out of its work. This means that PolyPhotonix will be certainly one to watch in 2016.
As for the business park on which PolyPhotonix is based, NETPark and its incubator for growing businesses looks like it is going to grow into a vital technology hub for the North East.