A YOUNG entrepreneur from Wembley has won an award for creating a free mobile app that aims to cut down minicab-related crime.

Safer Minicabs was created by Jayesh Hirani, 25, who impressed a panel of judges in the Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Awards with his business idea and has been awarded £1,000 to further develop his idea.

Mr Hirani set up the app to curb minicab-related sexual offences by allowing people to book licensed minicabs from anywhere in London. All participating minicab firms go through a security screening process and after booking the customer has access to driver and vehicle details. Customers are given a quote within 60 seconds.

Safer Minicabs is an app for the iPhone and Android smartphones, which allows you to get either the cheapest or quickest minicab fare quickly and conveniently, while an app for the Blackberry is still being made.

The app also provides users with a panic button that links you straight to Safer Minicabs and to the minicab office you booked with in event of an emergency with customer location being tracked by the office whilst in the minicab during the journey.

Mr Hirani was in the final year of his software engineering course at Kingston University when he thought of the idea for his dissertation.

He said: "I was told that this would work out as a business venture by my tutor when I was at university but I wasn't sure.

"I'm really glad that it obviously worked out now and that this has paid off.

"I created this app to help the thousands of people who call a minicab each night feel safe in the knowledge that their driver has been vetted by an independent third party.

“The credibility of winning this award and being in the running for the Shell Young Entrepreneur of the Year award is invaluable.”