North East IoT Challenge

North East

About the Programme

Sunderland Software City is inspiring and enabling the growth of the software sector in the North East of England, establishing the region as one of the world’s leading destinations for technology innovation and enterprise.

We have partnered with Digital Catapult to establish a regional extension of the Things Connected LPWAN network. Things Connected North East consists of free-to-use LoRaWAN and Sigfox gateways deployed across North East and Tees Valley for the use of testing, experimentation, demonstration and piloting of IoT products and services. This infrastructure will facilitate the delivery of a series of challenge-led innovation programmes in the areas of Tourism, Agriculture, Manufacturing, Smart Buildings, Port Management and Sea Defence. These challenges have been developed in partnership with private industry, public service bodies,and specialist advisors and have the potential to lead to commercial opportunities - helping to accelerate the region's IoT economy. As part of this we will actively build and support the local LPWAN community through Meet-up events, technical seminars and challenge workshops.

The programme launches on 1 April 2018 with a series or workshops that will involve our challenge owners explaining their sector and the business challenge that they face.

Why SMEs should get involved

This is a unique opportunity for start-ups and SMEs to solve real life challenges whilst develop revenue-generating products and services. If you are a hardware, middleware or software developer or a company looking to move into the Internet of Things space you should register to get involved with our challenges.

What you can expect from the programme

Firstly, all our challenges will be clear in terms of required input and potential benefit. Our process will minimise time out of the office and bring as much commercial opportunity as possible.

Throughout the process you will have access to business and technical support from our project consultants as you develop LPWAN solutions to the challenges posed. Business support will cover topics such as raising finance, pricing models, sales techniques and pitch training. We will also offer one to one mentoring and advice through Sunderland Software City’s business support services at no cost to you.

Challenge owners

We are partnering with a range of companies and public bodies who have all identified challenges that we believe can be overcome using innovative LPWAN solutions.

We are developing challenges with owners from a wide range of sectors including: utilities, logistics, environmental management, large scale events, shipping and offshore

Challenges will be launched in mid-March and appear on this website.

Who should apply

Start-ups and SMEs who have an interest in developing their business technically and commercially through IoT technology and exposure to real-life challenges set by public and corporate partners.

How to apply

We will be launching an Open Call for applications in mid-March.

If you would like to find out more about the programme please contact us at

If you are interested in finding out about how you can get involved.

Register here