The company pitched to Cambridge Angel investors earlier this week and Peter Cowley, who runs Martlet for the Marshall Group, said he will now work on bringing funders on board.
Martlet signed its first investment earlier this week - details to follow - and has another three already agreed by the Martlet board, Nova Parking would be a fifth.
Car parking is a £1bn per annum industy in the UK alone. Nova's tag line is that it wants to make parking better, this means improve the experience for the driver and operator of the car parking space.
To do this Nova says it has come up with a unique and potentially highly lucrative approach, a little like an automated traffic warden that can both advise the driver on good places to park, yet ruthlessly inform the authorities of infringements.
The company uses a sensor encased in a tough protective shell which is placed in car parks and bays to monitor occupancy. Vehicles carry a permit card that communicates with the sensor so Nova can tell if a vehicle is lawfully or unlawfully parked, relaying the information in realtime to the operators' network and directing them straight to the vehicle.
This provides savings to the groups in charge of the parking by cutting down on the number of patrols needed, eliminating wasted fuel and workforce hours, as well as providing valuable data on car parking habits. It is the car park operators who will provide Nova with the majority of their revenues, paying to ultimately cut costs.
At the driver end of the service, Nova wants to provide smartphone applications that allow people to find empty spaces and pay from their phones, avoiding ticketing machines and other time-hungry systems, potentially another revenue stream.
Nova was founded by Cambridge University graduates, Aron Rachamim, COO, and Hugo Vincent, CTO, and CEO Itamar Meimon from London Business School. It received early seed funding in September 2010 and has filed for at least one patent covering essential aspects of automated parking technology.
Meimon says it is not just a particular technology that makes it unique, but that it offers a fully integrated system to the driver and car park operators, the provision of an almost entirely automated enforcement of parking.
"The combination of how we do things is unique," says Meimon. "Not just detecting a car, but the whole way of streamlining enforcement, which allows automatic enforcement, directing patrols to the infringing car."
Nova say theirs is a new approach to a car parking market worth £1bn in the UK alone and with clearly defined revenue streams and growth plans, the company presents a strong case according to Cowley. He said: "It will be a slow process getting the product in, but Nova already has one potential customer and a trial set up in Cambridge."
The trial is at the Hauser Forum, where the company is currently based in IdeaSpace, for between 20 and 30 spaces.
The possible customer meanwhile is Spring Parking, a North London parking enforcement company whose system currently depends on issuing tickets rather than clamping.
Nova has signed a memorandum of understanding with Spring Parking to trial its product across several clients, covering around 200 spaces in total.
Nova plans to make clients such as Spring Parking, operating relatively small car parks for businesses its first target, before moving on to slightly larger spaces, such as rail stations and hospitals, before moving on to airports, stadiums and one day public roads.blog comments powered by Disqus