: Software/IT
Primary partner: Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust / AIMES


CSols is a software company with a longstanding pedigree in laboratory automation, system integration and data management. It develops innovative software for improving the productivity, efficiency and quality of laboratory workflows, especially in the clinical sector.

Established in 2000, the Runcorn-based company has successfully applied its core products and expertise across pathology laboratories in the UK, Europe and the Far East. When it came into contact with the Health Innovation Exchange (HIE) after being in business for more than 25 years, it was seeking to improve its services and develop advanced new products to make pathology services safer, faster, more cost-efficient and more sustainable.

Approaching the programme

CSols approached the HIE following a networking with programme partners,  Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Authority (LEP) and the Innovation Agency. It had also previously worked with AIMES in previous projects and is a supplier to Alder Hey Pathology Lab.

Prior to its work with the Health Innovation Exchange, the company considered exploring the health sector, but found it very difficult to access support within the sector and to engage with the right decision makers. Although it was receiving a lot of interest from pathology labs in its products and services, potential customers were often struggling to secure the right financial support for moving forward. In addition, it was proving a challenge to find resources for working with valuable NHS partners, such as AIMES, in order to advance and improve NHS pathology lab services.

Partner support

After an initial diagnostic period, the HIE identified a range of support for CSols, which it would deliver in partnership variously with AIMES and Alder Hey Laboratory Medicine. Both partners worked with CSols to help produce a case study outlining the benefits of its services, while Alder Hey provided it with increased access to personnel for input on how to improve its services. Valuable information about the current situation and challenges within the NHS, particularly in relation to pathology services, was also provided through LEP and the Innovation Agency.

Our results

As a result of the support provided via the HIE, CSols was able to submit a grant application for the Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP) scheme, allowing it to redefine and improve its pathology labs services. It defined new requirements for improving services and future products that, in turn, will help it to access financial support more easily. Work is also progressing with AIMES for CSols to offer its services to many more pathology labs.

It has strengthened its relationship with Alder Hey as a valuable partner for product testing and for developing products and services. Alder Hey Pathology Lab, meanwhile, is able to exploit the company’s advanced solutions for their pathology services.

Elsewhere, CSols credits the support with improving its networking and raising its profile for available schemes, grants and projects.