Kinsetsu, Analytics Engines and Deloitte MCS have been selected by the Education Authority (EA) for Phase 1 of their SBRI to develop innovative solutions to allow delivery of safer and more efficient home-to-school transport in Northern Ireland.

The Education Authority (EA) is responsible for delivering safe, efficient home to school transport for 90,000 children across Northern Ireland, using a fleet of more than 800 dedicated buses as well as other modes including Translink service.

In October, EA launched a new ‘Smart School Transport’ competition under the Small Business Research Initiative scheme (SBRI).  It invited bids to develop innovative ways to improve;

  • Convenience for pupils / journey data capture
  • Understanding usage patterns of the EA fleet of vehicles
  • Improving fleet logistics, and
  • Pupil safety & security

Fifteen bidders responded to the invitation to tender and following interviews of shortlisted proposals three companies have been selected to work with the EA.

This initial Phase of the SBRI is intended to show the technical feasibility of the proposed concept and its viability as a solution for the EA.  The proof-of-concept work will be restricted to applications on EA-owned bus fleet, though solutions should be scalable to other services.

The three companies selected are:


The Kinsetsu solution will provide a realtime digital footprint for the Education Authority Fleet, enabling pupil journey data for relevant communication and awareness to assist with the pupil experience and safety. Kinsetsu will capture this data to provide business insights and facilitate further data analysis for future optimisation of the pupil journey and the Education Authority fleet.

Analytics Engines

Analytics Engines is based in Belfast and specializes in high performance data and analytics software and services, focusing on Smart Cities, Life Sciences and Health Care applications.  They provide an enterprise grade data platform with inbuilt advanced analytics capabilities, building innovative solutions to complex problems.

Deloitte MCS

Deloitte LLP is among the country’s leading professional services firms. Deloitte LLP is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities.

Phase 1 of the SBRI will trial and test three prototypes on a small selection of vehicles and routes, to determine whether further phases of extended testing and development should be undertaken.  Projects must comply with all data, safeguarding and security requirements of EA.

Phase 1 will be completed by the end of March 2018.