Handaxe CIC was founded in February 2014 by Dr David Coyle and Dr Gary O’Reilly. We develop new technologies to support mental health services. Our first product, Pesky gNats, is a computer game that supports Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) interventions for young people aged 9-17. It provides targeted support for young people experiencing anxiety and depression. These are the most common mental health disorders in the UK. The software was developed through a project funded by the Small Business Research Initiative for Healthcare (SBRI Healthcare) at the University of Bristol. Dr David Coyle was the Principle Investigator of the project. Upon completion of that project the licence for the Pesky gNats software was granted to Handaxe CIC, on a royalty free, exclusive worldwide basis.
In February 2014 Handaxe CIC applied for further funding to the SBRI Healthcare. This proposal was successful and we have received an offer for £400k to continue the development and distribution of the Pesky gNats software. This funding will begin in April 2014 and last for one year. Our aim within this time to make Handaxe CIC a sustainable enterprise through sales of the Pesky gNats intervention software and online training in the intervention. Our initial target market is NHS clinicians, but we will also expand to target public and private mental health service providers in the UK, EU and US.