A Truro entrepreneur, who was diagnosed with a severe heart illness nine years ago, has been named a semi-finalist in the 2010 Barclays Trading Places Awards, which recognises people who have beaten the odds to succeed in business.
Daniel Male, who designs and creates pouches to conceal medical devices, is now hoping to win a share of the £50k prize package just six months after setting up on his own.
Nine years ago, at the age of 20, Male was diagnosed with Primary Pulmonary Hypertension, more commonly known as heart and lung disease.
Despite being given only a year to live, he was determined not to let his illness defeat him. Opting for medication rather than a transplant, Male endured excruciating pain for the next five years. He was then offered a pioneering treatment which required him to wear a special pump designed to deliver drugs directly into his heart.
The treatment proved to be a success but having to wear the pump constantly made Male extremely self-conscious. Wanting to look like other young people, he decided to design a special carrying pouch to hide and protect the equipment he was required to wear 24 hours a day. The result was the Joey Pouch. With the encouragement of his family, Daniel developed his concept into a business and launched Joey Pouches in March this year.
Joey Pouches designs, manufactures and supplies products to house and protect a range of medical equipment and consumables by patients with chronic and acute illnesses. With his unique insight, Daniel runs his business first and foremost to address the specific needs of the patient and his product designs are user-led. He also employs the skills of disabled people in the manufacturing of his goods.
Although still in its early stages, the company is already receiving orders via its website through word of mouth and the relationships Daniel has built with various charities.
Steve Cooper, chair of the judging panel and MD of Barclays Business, said: “The calibre of this year’s entries is outstanding and we hope that with this recognition, Joey Pouch will continue on the road to success.
“We also hope Daniel’s story will inspire other budding entrepreneurs in Cornwall, who face similar difficulties to come forward and turn their own business dreams into reality.”