UCL Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering


Three EEE students to pitch at Conception X Demo Day 2021

1 November 2021

Chris Parsonson, Zak Shabka and Robin Matzner, research students from EEE's Optical Networks Group at UCL, are pitching their startup project - NP Deep - at the Conception X 2021 Demo Day this Wednesday 3 November.

Graphical image of Conception X logo

Conception X is a venture programme that encourages PhD students to explore entrepreneurship alongside their degree, helping them to launch deep tech startups. EEE PhD candidates Chris Parsonson, Zak Shabka and Robin Matzner are one of the teams making up the 2021 cohort of successful Conception X applicants.

Chris, Zak and Robin were accepted onto the programme earlier this year and over the last few months have had access to enterprise training and mentorship to enable them to develop their startup project NP-Deep. Now, they have been shortlisted to pitch their idea to investors and industry experts as the final part of the programme: the Conception X 2021 Demo Day. 

In their day-to-day research, Chris, Zak and Robin explore AI-based methods for the optimisation of optical network systems which they are applying to the general area of logistics to build a platform (NP Deep) that can be used to automatically solve a variety of problems in networked systems. They anticipate the technology being used across a range of sectors from data centre management to manufacturing and supply chain coordination.

About joining the programme, Chris, Zak and Robin said:

"Conception X gives us the best opportunity to learn how to commercialise our research and successfully launch our deep tech startup. It provides us with a productive environment in which we will be able to connect with mentors, industry partners, collaborators, and potential clients and investors. The programme is also unique in its accommodation of our goal to continue our PhD research alongside the venture."

Demo Day is taking place on Wednesday 3 November at 14:00 GMT. Further information, including details on how to register to attend, can be found below. 

About Conception X

Conception X was founded at University College London in 2018 with the objective of transforming the next generation of researchers into venture scientists and the founders of their own companies. Today, more than 200 students across 30 universities have taken part in the programme and raised £13m in startup funding. Conception X partners with Eagle Labs and Deloitte to deliver its programme. 


Conception X
Demo Day Event 
Optical Networks Group