Making a positive impact in sustainability

Abiel Ma, CEO and Co-founder of Vuala

By Jenny Ridge 3min read

Abiel Ma is a recent Homerton Mst graduate and the CEO and Co-founder of Vuala. He matriculated in 2019 for the MSt in Entrepreneurship, with a specialised focus in clean energy technologies. 

His company, Vuala, was brought to life with support from the Changemaker programme, and he is now a proud ambassador of the initiative. Vuala’s aim is to make food waste recycling easy with its automatic waste sorting technology - a bio-mechanical system, integrated with specialised micro-organisms and bacteria to automatically separate food waste from any other wastes, turning them into raw material for biogas and animal feed production within hours onsite.

Abiel has been actively engaged in a range of Changemaker activities including the Gamechanger programme, Homerton Changemaker seed fund, and ‘dinner with a leader’ series. 

He says:
“The Homerton Changemaker experience has been truly transformative for me. It has not only provided me with valuable opportunities and networks that were essential to develop Vuala, but it has also given me a more profound perspective on my place in the world.

My advice to the current students at Homerton would be to seize every opportunity available to you and be open to learning from every experience.

Take advantage of the resources and networks provided by Homerton Changemaker to explore your interests and develop your skills. Connect with other like-minded individuals and collaborate on projects that align with your passions.

Don't be afraid to take risks and pursue your dreams, even if they seem daunting at first. As an entrepreneur, I've learned that failure is a necessary part of the journey, and it's important to embrace it as a learning opportunity and use it to fuel your growth.

Finally, always stay true to your values and maintain a sense of purpose in everything you do. Remember that as a member of the Homerton community, you have the power to make a positive impact on the world, and your contributions can be truly transformative.”

His incredible list of achievements so far include:

  • Innovate UK Young Innovator Award 
  • Trinity Bradfield Hellings Prize Winner
  • Cogx Global Impact Award: Individual 
  • Top #21towatch, Cognitive
  • Top 3, HCR Hewitsons Award of Innovation 
  • Cleantech Company of the Year & The Tech for Good Award, Cambridge Independent Science and Technology Awards 2023
  • Finalist, Decarbonising Cities pitching Competition, CogX

Abiel will be speaking at the highly anticipated  CambridgeTechWeek 8-12 May - a fantastic opportunity for tech enthusiasts and professionals to come together and explore the latest trends and innovations in the industry. He will also speak at the Innovation Zero Congress, on 24 May at Olympia, London. 

Vuala has recently been selected to join the anniversary 10th cohort of Central Research Laboratory flagship CRL Accelerator programme. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund and UKRI (UK Research and Innovation), CRL placed experienced industrial & product engineers into Vuala’s team and offers 3 months intensive product development support to test, improve and validate Vuala's innovative food waste separation system, Vuala X1. The company will also be starting its first test trial at the Bradfield Centre, Cambridge Science Park. A further trial is also planned at Homerton on a bigger scale with a mixture of both catering (dining hall) and residential (dorm).

Did you know? The 'Changemakers Catalyst Fund will award up to 5 grants of up to £2000 each for initiatives led by Homerton students.

If you’re building -  or planning to build - an enterprise, product, campaign, or creative project that will help us move to a more just, sustainable and regenerative future you have just over a week left to APPLY! Deadline is 1 May 5pm! 

Find out more about 'Changemakers Catalyst Fund’ and read more about Abiel’s company on the Vuala website.