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About Us

Meet

About Us

The Team

Ultrahaptics has developed a unique technology that enables users to receive tactile feedback without needing to wear or touch anything. The technology uses ultrasound to project sensations through the air and directly onto the user. Users can ‘feel’ touch-less buttons get feedback for mid-air gestures or interact with virtual objects.

Ultrahaptics was founded in 2013 based on technology originally developed at the University of Bristol, UK. The company secured Seed Funding in 2014, raised one of the UK’s largest technology A rounds in 2015 of £10.1m, and received a European Commission Grant of €1.49m, all of which have allowed for the further development of the technology and the expansion of the engineering team. Ultrahaptics is currently engaged with tier 1 customers, from multiple markets, with their Evaluation Program.

Steve Cliffe President and CEO

Steve has 30 years of experience in the technology industry encompassing significant exposure to global markets, senior management positions and commercial roles. He joined Ultrahaptics from Plessey Semiconductor, where he was Business Development Director. Prior to that role, he was CEO at Provision and Xintronix. He also brings extensive commercial experience to the role from previous appointments. He was VP of Sales and Marketing at eoSemi and Sales Director at Dialog Semiconductor.

Tom Carter CTO

Tom started exploring ultrasound technology during a study in the final year of his Master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Bristol. He further developed the initial concept to form the basis of his PhD studies, during which time he published numerous papers and filed various patents. Recognising the technology’s commercial viability, Tom founded Ultrahaptics in November 2013.

Michael Tobin OBE Chairman

Michael Tobin joined Ultrahaptics as Chairman in January 2015. Previously, he held the position of CEO of TelecityGroup plc, a major FTSE250 technology company, where over the past decade he has led the business from a market cap of £6m to Europe’s leading Data Centre operator worth over £1.5Bn. Also on the board of tech companies Pacnet in Asia and DataPipe in the USA, in 2014 he was awarded an OBE by the Queen for Services to the Digital Economy.

Sriram Subramanian CSO and Co-Founder

Sriram Subramanian is Professor of Informatics at the University of Sussex, with a research interests in exploring new forms of interactive systems. He is specifically interested in rich and expressive input combining multi-touch, haptics and touchless gestures. Before joining the University of Sussex, he was Professor of Human-computer Interaction at the University of Bristol, where he co-founded Ultrahaptics. Prior to that, he worked as a senior scientist at Philips Research Netherlands and as an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science of the University of Saskatchewan, Canada.

Mark Reilly IP Group

Mark has extensive experience in the information and communications technology sector, working with a broad spectrum of organisations from blue chip multinationals and NGOs to early-stage start-ups. His technical expertise ranges from software and web applications to optics and electronics. Prior to joining IP Group, Mark was the founder and Managing Director of Remarkable Innovation, a successful Singapore-based technical due diligence company with a range of international Fortune 500 and national government clients. Mark holds a PhD in Engineering from the University of Cambridge, UK.

Sir Hossein Yassaie Non Executive Director

Sir Hossein Yassaie graduated from the University of Birmingham with a PhD in electronics and communication, before embarking on his career working at Inmos, STMicroelectronics and Videologic, which later became Imagination Technologies in 1999.
Hossein received a knighthood in the 2013 New Year Honours in recognition of his services to technology and innovation.

Steve Cliffe President and CEO

Steve has 30 years of experience in the technology industry encompassing significant exposure to global markets, senior management positions and commercial roles. He joined Ultrahaptics from Plessey Semiconductor, where he was Business Development Director. Prior to that role, he was CEO at Provision and Xintronix. He also brings extensive commercial experience to the role from previous appointments. He was VP of Sales and Marketing at eoSemi and Sales Director at Dialog Semiconductor.

Tom Carter CTO

Tom started exploring ultrasound technology during a study in the final year of his Master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Bristol. He further developed the initial concept to form the basis of his PhD studies, during which time he published numerous papers and filed various patents. Recognising the technology’s commercial viability, Tom founded Ultrahaptics in November 2013.

David Owen VP Business Development

David is an experienced senior manager in the electronics and semiconductor industries where he has held various sales and marketing management positions. He joins Ultrahaptics from Plessey where he was Marketing Director. Prior to this, David’s roles included Sales Director at AnalogicTech & Account Director at Lumileds, covering Sony Ericsson globally. He has also previously held various senior marketing and market sector management roles with Philips, GEC Plessey and Ferranti. David holds a honours degree in Engineering and diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Michelle Hook People Operations

Michelle holds a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management from the University of the West of England. She has extensive experience in collaborating with business leaders to develop and grow business and achieve objectives.

Abby Atkinson Financial Controller

Abby joined Ultrahaptics in early 2016 from Tribal. A CIMA qualified Management Accountant, She holds a BSc in Economics and Accounting, with Italian, from the University of Bristol.

Barry Dennington VP Engineering

Barry joined Ultrahaptics in February 2016. His career started as an apprentice at Philips Electronics in London and advanced his career with roles in Business Management at AMI Inc in California, ST Micro and Mitel in Europe until he returned to Philips and California in 2000 as Vice President leading a $450m Computing Business serving customers such as Apple, Cisco and HP. Four years later he transferred to Philips HQ in Eindhoven as Senior Vice President leading global Product Businesses and Services Groups. Barry went on to become Managing Director NXP UK Ltd and participated in a number of industry Boards. Most recently he was Chief Operating Officer at Plessey.

Alex Driskill Smith VP North America

Alex joined Ultrahaptics in 2016. Alex’s previous roles include senior director of strategy and business development at Samsung and vice president of business development at Grandis, a semiconductor memory start-up with an IP licencing model that was acquired by Samsung. With a PhD in microelectronics engineering from Cambridge University and an MBA from Wharton, Driskill-Smith is able to offer a deep understanding of the company’s core IP and technology as well as a solid foundation in business strategy supports the commercialisation of Ultrahaptics’ products.

    Awards & Recognition

  • Royal Academy of Engineering Colin Cambell Mitchell Award
  • NMI Innovation Award 2016
  • WCIT Judges Award for Innovation
An image of the Ultrahaptics team accepting an award

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Investors

Our Investors

IP Group

IP Group is a leading intellectual property commercialisation company which focuses on evolving great ideas, mainly from its partner universities, into world-changing businesses. The Group has pioneered a unique approach to developing these ideas and the resulting businesses by providing access to business building expertise, capital, networks, recruitment and business support.

Woodford Investment Management

Woodford Investment Management LLP is a fast-growing asset management company built on a founding philosophy of transparency and simplicity. Launched in May 2014, the company has more than £12.5bn assets under management.

This is the team modal