Yorkshire tech startup announces funding to help boost productivity on factory floors

A tech spin-out whose cloud based data capture and analysis technology is unlocking five-fold increases in manufacturing factory floor productivity in the North of England has secured a significant six-figure investment from a combined Angel and Venture Capital syndicate, valuing the company at £2m.

Just three weeks after being awarded a Business Productivity Programme grant to accelerate the development and roll out of its productivity maximising platform, Sheffield-based FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics’ has been given a major confidence boost from the combined Angel and Venture Capital investment communities.

FourJaw, Co-founder, Robin Hartley, who last week was named one of 42 young entrepreneurs under the age of 42 to watch in Yorkshire, said: “We could not have asked for a better start; this six-figure investment puts us on track to refine and develop our technology in time for the launch of our next product in the spring - a plug and play device that unlocks step changes in productivity for British manufacturers, supporting a rapid post-COVID recovery and keeping the UK’s exporters truly competitive in the global marketplace.”

Edward Stevenson, Investment Executive at SFC Capital, the Venture Capital firm who added a significant sum to the combined Angel investment and one of the larger investors in FourJaw, said: “This investment shows our confidence in the game changing technology that FourJaw has developed. Much of UK manufacturing is tired with the hype surrounding Industry 4.0. But FourJaw have created a data-driven, productivity booster that is simple to install, easy to use and affordable to run. It is a technology right for its time, driving a manufacturing renaissance for post-Brexit and post-COVID Britain where productivity and competitiveness will be essential.”

Bart Simpson, FourJaw’s Chairman, and former Senior Operations Director at Autodesk, said: “FourJaw have hit upon a beautifully simple tool that is affordable, adaptable and accessible to the overwhelming majority of machining shop floors in the UK. It elegantly sidesteps the often costly and complex big ticket alternatives, to deliver the right information at the right time - which is real time - securely on the cloud. A handheld tablet gives staff, from the shop floor to the top floor, easy-to-digest data that will drive big improvements in productivity, thus securing UK jobs and international markets against fierce global competition.” 

With the help of regional not-for-profit investment organisation NorthInvest, FourJaw now has the backing of 12 Angel investors who straddle the frontier between smart software and advanced manufacturing. The not-for-profit’s Investment Director, Stuart Brown, said: “Our role is to drive grass roots growth across the north of England through helping founders like Chris and Robin unlock angel and private sector investment, so it’s great to see such an innovative young spin out, whose technology will massively boost manufacturing productivity and competitiveness, securing substantial financial backing at the start of its journey.”

Sheffield City Region LEP Chair James Muir, welcomed the news of FourJaw’s VC investment: “Despite the challenges of the pandemic, South Yorkshire has businesses capable of and hungry for growth. FourJaw is a fantastic example of how bringing together two of our region’s strengths, digital technology and manufacturing, can attract further investment to South Yorkshire. Companies like FourJaw will help us bring our ambitious jobs- led recovery plan for the region to fruition through the creation of good, high-value jobs in South Yorkshire.”

The newly formed company is determined to make a significant impact, not just in its South Yorkshire base but also the wider UK manufacturing community. The two founders were research engineers at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) - a world leading R&D facility that numbers McLaren, Airbus, Boeing, BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce as its partners - when they came up with their idea for a device to turbocharge machining shop floors.

AMRC CEO, Steve Foxley, said: “It’s great to see FourJaw get off to a flying start, taking the learnings from their time with us, and their engagement with the region’s digital community, to develop a very smart product to help improve productivity and sustainability in UK manufacturing supply chains. We look forward to working with them in the region as we support industry and make a more rapid and resilient recovery. Such spin outs are core to our strategy going forward.”

Startup Details

Startup Details



FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics was founded by Chris Iveson and Robin Hartley from within the skunk-works of the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre. Chris and Robin knew that manufacturers must adopt digital technologies to compete on the global stage. However they saw manufacturers were tired of Industry that always seemed just out of reach. The result is FourJaw, whose data analytics platform is machine agnostic, affordable, adaptable and accessible. FourJaw tech is now bringing five-fold productivity increases to UK manufacturers.

  • Headquarters Regions
    Sheffield, UK
  • Founded Date
  • Founders
    Chris Iveson, Robin Hartley
  • Operating Status
  • Number of Employees