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Periodic Reporting for period 1 - NUADA (NUADA: YOUR LIFE. HANDS-ON.)

Reporting period: 2017-12-01 to 2018-05-31

Millions of people suffer from lack of strength and pain in the hand. These limitations occur due to health problems, such as strokes arthritis or old age, or due to the performance of demanding professional activities.
The Nuada company focuses on the development of the Nuada Glove, an intelligent and soft exoskeleton for the hand that was designed to provide active support to the user while enhancing the hand’s strength. With Nuada, the user can hold up to 40 kg's of weight while the hand is completely relaxed.
The project has 5 mains goals :
- Create a soft exoskeleton that is comfortable to wear;
- Interact seamlessly with the user ;
- Highly increase the weight support for the hand and wrist;
- Create a very small and light form factor for the system;
- Create a system that can be used everyday by a great number of people;

Our mission is to build the best product, using business to inspire and implementing solutions that are affordable and comfortable that will allow people with problems and pain in any joint to be more independent and to have more control and autonomy in their day-to-day activities. With that in mind, we conducted a rigorous feasibility study, with primary objective to ensure that the system and clinical studies were viable and market oriented. Furthermore, we conducted a thorough assessment of our market, business model and risks of project deployment while we also focused on planning our work schedule for the next two years and reviewing our business plan. Moreover, in order to sustainably increase our market share, we designed a strategy for managing a NUADA’s intellectual property rights portfolio.
Applying Nuada to the healthcare areas would allow users to regain hand function and would decrease injuries when applied to industrial areas where the activities are challenging for the hand and wrist structures.
The work that has been completed during this period covered by the report is summarized in the following bullets:

• Technical Analysis: We defined the specific technical aspects for the NUADA glove requirements for production scale-up, certification and go-to market.
• Pilot the solution: We prepared for market launch. To achieve that, during the Phase I study, we chose partners as described previously: Volkswagen, Hospital Cova da Beira, etc.
• Market Assessment: To fully confirm that there will be a product fit of NUADA, we discussed the product and business with many potential customers.
• IPR issues: We have assessed freedom to operate and have an IP strategy that will create competitive barriers and thereby prevent our competitors from capturing our market share. Additionally, one patent has been submitted, focusing on the overall solution, and 3 more patents are being prepared to be submitted after the next round of investment.
• Work Plan & Risk Assessment: We created a Work Plan for the project, clearly defining tasks, and resource and timings assignments. Conducted a risk assessment, including likelihood, impact and contingency plans. Analyzed the implemented status-quo as one of the major obstacles to growth and critical mass adoption.
• Business Model: We explored several business model simulations to ensure the market acceptance and therefore our commercial impact and our competitive advantage.
• Feasibility study and Business Plan: We elaborated a business plan, based on the feasibility study, which details the current market conditions and the best strategic advantages to explore
The NUADA glove is lighter, smaller, more intelligent and energetically efficient than currently available alternatives while inexpensive. With its system fully embedded on the glove and bracelet, it does not require any battery backpacks. Thus, when compared to rigid exoskeletons, our soft approach is more comfortable and natural for the users. Our goal is to create a system that can be used to facilitate the everyday lives of all those impacted by hand weakness or need extra support, and even by some impacted groups that have currently no alternatives.

Apart from the less tangible but highly relevant benefits related to life quality, recovery of hand function and injury prevention, the NUADA glove also presents a very strong value for our two key initial markets.

Although the medical application and benefit of the glove for the individual healthcare sector is an invaluable business case, the industrial sector has also shown a great interest in our solution thanks to the glove’s strength-enhancing abilities and the potential savings for the business. Our solution has been effectively piloted within both medical and industrial environment and we are confident that we are on the right track for a successful commercialisation.