Our story

Where do the ideas with the power to change the world come from?


A challenge set

Where do the ideas with the power to change the world come from? For our chief technical officer Ian Tansley, it began with a tantalising problem. Vaccine refrigerators in off-grid situations relied on solar power, and an essential component was a rechargeable battery. Yet these batteries were costly, unreliable and hard to replace in remote locations. Could he somehow do away with that essential battery?

Ian had a postgraduate degree in product design and an incurable curiosity. He also had thirty years’ of experience in emerging technologies and years spent working on sustainable development in Africa and Asia. Experience that showed him technology pushed to the limit in the most challenging of climates — and gave him an invaluable insight into the strengths and failings of the systems we relied on.

Ian knew there had to be a better way. Then walking one day in winter past a lake in the mountains near his home, he mused that beneath the ice on the surface fish would be swimming happily. He was reminded of the physics of water that gave the unique properties that made this possible. And he had an idea.


On the side of the angels

Ian was introduced to entrepreneur Peter Saunders whose vision and success in building businesses had led to him becoming a business angel.

Peter already had a portfolio of businesses in which he invested and nurtured, and was named UK Business Angel of the Year. His achievements in both business and public service had also seen him honoured by Queen Elizabeth II and consulted by 10 Downing Street.

All this paved the way for something bigger in business. Something that would impact the world we lived in. Something like this seemingly impossible idea of Ian’s.

So Peter set about creating the conditions for success, financing the research & development, and building a team of executives with the experience and seniority to get Sure Chill to the world – changing lives today and creating a better tomorrow.


Production started

From our headquarters in Wales, UK, production started on the first of the devices.


First product sold

Our very first device was shipped to South Sudan.


Sure Chill receives Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Award

Sure Chill was the proud recipient of a $1.5 million award from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The award was to help speed the development of a passive vaccine cooler that would allow vaccination programmes to reach children living in some of the remotest places on the planet.


Sold into 38 countries worldwide

Within five years Sure Chill had devices in over 38 countries around the world. Helping to keep vaccines safe in all types of locations across Africa, Asia, and Europe.


Announced “The most innovative new cold chain technology of the year”

Sure Chill was named as the award winner at the prestigious Global Cold Chain Forum in Boston, USA. The award, which received entries from around the world, was judged by a panel of industry leading experts from Merck, Novartis, US Pharmacopeia and others.


Sure Chill chosen to help shape Dubai’s future

Sure Chill was selected to be part of the ground-breaking Dubai Future Accelerators programme. The Dubai government-backed programme chose just 30 companies from around the world to collaborate in creating a better future.


Sure Chill wins Best Health Technology at the inaugural Future Planet Awards

A panel of judges chaired by world renowned architect Lord Norman Foster selected Sure Chill as Future Planets Health Technology of the year.


Partnership and pilot started with Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA)

 The Sure Chill company has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), after taking part in the 12 week Dubai Future Accelerators Programme.


Sure Chill announced as Cardiff’s Business of the Year 2017

Sure Chill received yet more accolades, this time being presented with TWO awards at the Cardiff Business Awards. Firstly as ‘Technology Innovation of the Year’, then as the winner of the overall category ‘Business of the Year’.


Partnership started with The Shell Foundation

Sure Chill begun development on an exciting new range of products, working alongside The Shell Foundation. 


+36,000,000 safe vaccinations delivered by Sure Chill fridges

Using World Health Organization statistics it’s estimated Sure Chill vaccine refrigerators in the field have helped to store over 36,000,000 safe vaccinations. 


Takes part in Pitch@Palace Commonwealth 

Pitch@Palace Commonwealth is the platform to showcase Entrepreneurs from the 53 Commonwealth countries. Including a bootcamp at Facebook HQ and then presenting to an audience of royalty and business professionals in St James’ Palace.


Sure Chill CEO accompanies PM on African Trade Mission

Sure Chill’s CEO, Nigel Saunders, joined the Prime Minister on a 4-day tour of South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya meeting with leading businesses, policymakers and entrepreneurs in order to build new investment, trading and export ties between the UK and these emerging markets.

Prime Minister, Theresa May said: “The ambition and commitment to driving change that Sure Chill showcase is exactly what I want to see from British businesses, and I am pleased they are joining me on this important visit as the UK looks to deepen its partnership with Africa.”


Sure Chill wins Barclays innovation award

Sure Chill received recognition for its innovative cooling technology after winning the UK Eagle Lab Innovation category at the Barclays’ annual High-Growth & Entrepreneur Awards. The awards celebrate entrepreneurs’ success, leadership and positive impact on society.


Large installation projects begun in Senegal and Pakistan

Sure Chill’s vaccine refrigerators were chosen for health centres and hospitals in large scale projects across both Senegal and Pakistan. With our fridges being installed across the countries by local engineers trained in-country by Sure Chill’s own expert R&D team.


Sure Chill receives Board of Trade Award for exporting success

Presented with a Board of Trade Award (BOFTA) by International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP in recognition of their exporting success.

The BOFTAs celebrate businesses who have made an outstanding contribution to international trade by championing free trade through exporting, bringing investment into the UK or demonstrating an innovative approach to entering international markets.


Sure Chill secures a £4m investment

Investments from investor and brand builder The Garage Soho and Africa-focused capital manager, Novastar Ventures.

Investor The Garage Soho which focuses on building global brands  has invested £2m in Sure Chill – the first investment of this kind in its portfolio – after seeing the potential to grow the company into a global brand. It was attracted by how Sure Chill is disrupting the refrigeration market and interested in its social impact.

Novastar Ventures, which also invested £2m in Sure Chill, is a Kenya-based venture capital fund manager dedicated to finding and supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs designing and executing innovative business models to profitably serve Africa’s mass markets. Novostar invests Sovereign Wealth Funds from major European Governments as well as Banks.


Sure Chill announced as Innovation Business of the Year

Another award from the prestigious Cardiff Business Awards, this time Innovation Business of the Year. 


Sure Chill is a unique new cooling technology with the power to impact on people and business around the world.

Find us at

Sure Chill
Innovation Village
Cardiff Edge Business Park
Longwood Drive, Cardiff
CF14 7YU, United Kingdom


+44 (0) 3300 026 444