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DesignSpark infographic

Over 40,000 downloads in seven days: Freestyle Interactive’s campaign for RS Components makes Channel 4 News

A Freestyle Interactive digital campaign for RS Components has resulted in 41,372 downloads of the electronics company’s new software in just seven days.

The Gift of Invention campaign, created by the Midlands-based top 25UK agency, launches RS Components’ new 3D design software, DesignSpark Mechanical – a pioneering modelling tool which enables engineers to develop products faster than ever before.

In its first week (18-25 September), the campaign attracted international interest (7,735 software downloads in the U.S; 4,926 in Japan) and coverage on Channel 4 News.

The campaign is the first work Freestyle has created for Corby-based RS Components since being appointed as the electronics brand’s lead digital agency in July. RS Components is the trading company of Electrocomponents plc, the world’s leading distributor of electronics with annual revenues of £1.24 billion.

The ultimate Design Challenge

The initial phase of The Gift of Invention campaign centred on a 48-hour Design Challenge event, hosted by British inventor of the wind-up radio, Trevor Baylis OBE.

From 18-20 September, world-leading engineers from the likes of Dyson, TE Connectivity and Arduino gathered at Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry to go head-to-head in this high-profile design contest.

Four teams of expert designers had just 48 hours to create life-changing inventions using DesignSpark Mechanical. The entire event was streamed live, while RS Components’ online communities were encouraged to contribute to the challenge with their own ideas on social media.

The winning invention, a solution to water contamination in developing countries, was decided in an online vote and is now freely available as an open source download.

The second phase of The Gift of Invention campaign will open up the Design Challenge to the public. From 14 October-22 November, hundreds of DesignSpark Mechanical users are expected to pit themselves against the experts by creating their own world-changing products.

‘Staggering download figures’

“We are delighted by these staggering initial download figures,” said Mark Cundle, Head of Technical Marketing, RS Components.

“Freestyle’s concept of holding a Design Challenge with industry advocates, and giving this inspiring event a life of its own online, has resulted in our most successful software launch to date.

“Crucially, we’re seeing all the right metrics from this campaign. Not just in terms of software downloads, which have far exceeded our expectations. But also in the quality of social media engagement and national PR coverage.”

Alan Cooper, Freestyle Founder and New Business Director said: “We are really excited to be working with a global giant in the electronics market. It’s great to be involved with a campaign which has already resonated with online communities across the world, and generated some potentially world-changing inventions along the way.

“With The Gift of Invention campaign, we wanted to capture the endless creative possibilities for DesignSpark Mechanical users.

“Now we are eager to see how the wider engineering community responds to the Design Challenge with their own life-changing ideas.”



RS Components is the trading brand of Electrocomponents plc, the world’s leading high service distributor of electronics and maintenance products. Electrocomponents operates in 32 countries, offering more than 550,000 electronics products online, through catalogues and at trade counters to over one million customers. The company ships around 44,000 parcels a day.

Electrocomponents is listed on the London Stock Exchange and in the last financial year ended 31 March 2013 had revenues of £1.24bn. is RS Components’ online engineering community.

DesignSpark Mechanical is a professional 3D design software package created by RS Components.

The software was launched on 16 September 2013 as a free download available from The Gift of Invention microsite:

DesignSpark Mechanical brings 3D computer-aided-design (CAD) to engineers who were previously excluded from this technology due to expensive licensing costs and time-consuming training.

It enables anyone involved in product development to rapidly create new designs or edit existing 2D geometry without the complexity, and cost, of traditional CAD tools.

This is enabled by a powerful methodology called ‘direct modelling’, which uses simple gestures that can be likened to virtual clay modelling.

Freestyle infographic showing the total number of DesignSpark Mechanical downloads to date:

DesignSpark Mechanical Design Challenge

The Design Challenge took place at Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry from 18-20 September. (

The four teams of world-leading engineers had 48 hours to create life-changing inventions that would have a significant positive impact on people’s lives. These industry advocates used DesignSpark Mechanical to visualise and prototype their concepts.

The winning invention was Team Tesla’s ‘Print-a-filter’ – a water filtration system which uses two standard plastic bottles to tackle the problem of dirty drinking water.

Videos and images from the event can be found at:

Unleash your Gift is the second phase of the Design Challenge in which the public will get the chance to submit their own life-changing inventions, created using DesignSpark Mechanical.

This competition runs from Monday 14 October to Friday 22 November. Entries will be submitted on DesignSpark’s DesignShare site and the winning design, as voted for by the DesignSpark community, will receive a £5,000 cash prize.

Freestyle Interactive is a full-service digital agency offering strategic consultancy, creative design, technical build and customer engagement across a range of digital channels.

A Top 25 UK Digital Agency, Freestyle is 17 years old with offices in the UK and Paris. 70 staff provide intelligent digital solutions for progressive international businesses.

Freestyle was recently given Elite UK agency status by The Drum Magazine, reaching 7th place overall in the UK and 3rd overall in client satisfaction ratings.

Freestyle’s clients, served from its Warwickshire and Paris bases include Nectar, Arriva Buses, Amtico, Alstom, Coventry University, RS Components, Amateur Swimming Association, Ellisons, Land Rover.
Twitter: @freestyleint

For more information, please contact:

Alan Cooper
New Business Director – Freestyle Interactive
01926 652060

Further information is available via these links:

Twitter: @DesignSparkRS

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Freestyle Interactive in the following categories: Business & Finance, Media & Marketing, Manufacturing, Engineering & Energy, for more information visit