Tech Innovators 2014: Mash Machine takes multimedia entertainment to the masses

Ever wanted to feel like a world class DJ? Mash Machine's product is making it more accessible and has a number of new applications in the pipeline.

Bringing together people of all ages, ability and locations, Mash Machine is the kind of interactive device brands have been calling out for.

Users can build songs by adding and removing content, with the smart technology behind Mash Machine making sure it sounds good. Having made impressive progress in engaging with brands, the business is now part of the 2014 GrowthBusiness Tech Innovators.

Mash Machine

Based in: London

Founded in: 2013

No. of employees: 7

Company founder: Guy Gross

Mash Machine founder Guy Gross

Founder profile:

Entertainment and healthcare entrepreneur Guy Gross has built companies inside many large organisations over 15 years. His own ventures include MyMusicMonday (developing talent such as Jessie J and Amy Winehouse) and co-writing and winning the tender for the NHS National Shared Decision-Making Programme with the ex-CEO of Bupa Health Dialog.

Background business profile:

Rapid growth and proven demand has taken Mash Machine from idea to £150,000 turnover and multinational presence within ten months. Its product serves as a new media player, bringing together sound, lighting, and video controls into a single user interface. The product is available as hardware and as an app.

Inside track:

Google Campus was the setting for the coming together of Guy Gross and the two Estonians who had created a revolutionary new entertainment device. While only there to entertain the crowds with their interactive music product, Gross saw potential in the technology and challenged the two to go away and develop an ambitious business plan.

A year later and the start-up has attracted attention from the likes of Universal, which recognises the cross-platform potential of the product. ‘The way I describe it is that we take Nescafe and turn it into Starbucks by bringing in experience and more interactivity,’ Gross says.

Whereas previously it had only been seen as an events and marketing tool, Mash Machine is now a media player targeting a number of markets.

‘We have a massive number of partners and potential development pathway ahead, we’ve already been speaking to Intel who are using us as a case study,’ Gross adds.

‘As a business we want to enter two strains: events marketing and experience marketing. Some really interesting propositions have included turning a car into a Mash Machine as well as a dance floor.

The biggest challenges have come from trying to grow but limiting marketing so that IP can be protected. Gross and the team have had to learn how to do distribution deals as a start-up which will help build the brand and not just cash by being exclusive.

In an era of increasingly developments in virtual reality, simulation, 3D printing and even social media, Mash Machine seems perfectly positioned to exploit a number of different markets using its technology.

Mash Machine

Recent milestones:

  • Grown team to include non-execs Paul Burger, former CEO and chairman of Sony Music Europe, and Phil McCauley, chairman of Blackstar
  • Channel distributors in place for the event and experiential marketing products in UK, Italy, Netherlands, Lithuania and Estonia.
  • First-year revenues have broken £150,000 from a standing start without investment; clients include Fiat, BAT, Phillip Morris and Coke
  • Have proven markets and price points for first three channels (events, experiential marketing and coffee table concept) winning national and international marketing campaign awards along the way

Upcoming milestones:

  • Four broad patents already identified for immediate application with seven more under consideration for future products.
  • Closing a £750,000 interest free, unsecured loan from a Regional Growth Fund
  • Closing deals with vertical leads including the largest music therapy provider in Europe for therapy products, ex-head of educational products globally for Cisco leading development of our education offering, as well as an array of senior music industry colleagues wanting to promote the product for live performance and production

Recent technology:

Internalisation of a computer within Mash Machine unit paves the way for a self-contained, plug-and-play product with a much better user experience. Addition of audio, lighting, video and image activation has enabled creation of new concepts for marketers. Social media products have multiplied audiences by enabling them to share experiences.


The R&D pipeline drives Mash Machine towards a consumer product delivering its experience in-home at an affordable price point (around £300). This development pipeline creates products of increasing complexity over the next three years, each targeting a large addressable market through definable channels.


  • PureSync
  • Hey Human
  • Mark Waring – ex-VP legal affairs global at Warner/Chappell
  • Legal – GSC (licensing), Kilburn & Strode (IP Europe), Fried Frank (IP US)
  • Mass Relevence
  • Molvodi
  • Brit School


None to date

  • Raised £167,000 at a £6 million valuation from 18 investors, held in escrow through 
  • Likely to receive a £750,000 interest free unsecured loan from a Regional Growth Fund; this will need match funding of 750,000
  • Applying for a TSB SMART grant of £250,000, which will need matched funding of 350,000

Contact details:

The Bakery, 2nd Floor 25 City Road, EC1Y 1AA

Tel: 07773 327 440



View all 23 companies contained within Tech Innovators 2014

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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