By Ashley Davis
A company in Silicon Valley wants to use wearable technology to alert law enforcement and family members to crimes as they happen.
A company in Silicon Valley wants to use wearable technology to alert law enforcement and family members to crimes as they happen.

Los Altos, Calif.--Violent attacks in which victims couldn’t reach their phones prompted a group of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs to develop a ring that doubles as a panic button.

Nimb CEO Leo Bereschansky saw the need to develop this type of product after his girlfriend had a run-in with an obsessive ex-partner in 2014. Her hands were held together, rendering her unable to reach the cell phone and pepper spray she had in her purse.

“Lenny decided to develop this idea of something allowing [the ability to] call for the help of friends and relatives and people nearby with just one simple move, even if both of your hands are somehow restricted, which is the frequent case when you are in an emergency,” said Nimb’s communications director, Kathy Romanovskaya.

The result is Nimb, a ring that allows the wearer to pre-set emergency contacts in the program’s app. When Nimb’s panic button is held for three seconds, the emergency contacts are sent a message with the wearer’s exact location.

20160628 Nimb-Panic-Button-InsertNimb’s team includes (from left to right): CTO and Co-Founder Alex Medvedev, CEO and Founder Leo Bereschansky, Communications Director and Co-Founder Kathy Romanovskaya, CFO and Co-Founder Dmitry Gordi, and CMO and Founder Nick Marshansky.

Nimb’s core group of two founders and three co-founders are Russian, and Nimb is a Russian word, meaning “halo,” which denotes a protective circle, Romanovskaya explained.

Romanovskaya has her own personal connection to Nimb’s mission; in 2000 she was the victim of a near-deadly attack by a stranger that left her with multiple stab wounds and lacerations. She was walking alone in a safe neighborhood near a police station when the crime occurred.

“I joined the project this spring when I heard the idea and I recalled my story,” said Romanovskaya. “I decided not only to put all my professional skills on the table but also to tell this empowering story, to be an example for women all over the world for overcoming bad circumstances and going on with their life after something terrible happened.”

Nimb has been designed with the panic button on its inner side so that it can be activated discreetly with one hand, even if the wearer’s hands are bound together. The device can even record audio to be used as evidence.

The three-second hold to activate the alert was implemented to avoid accidental notifications, which can be voided by logging in to the device’s app and entering a password.

The pre-set emergency contact list is fully customizable for its user.

“The user manages his or her list in the application so they decide whom to alert. There are a lot of possibilities to establish your safety circle. You can notify friends or relatives or people nearby or authorities or every circle at the same time,” Romanovskaya said.

She also noted that Nimb could be worn “without compromising style.” The model is available in black and white and has a sleek, though large, design.

Nimb’s team has launched the product via a Kickstarter campaign, which had raised more than $150,000 as of press time.

“We already tripled our public goal five days into the campaign,” said Romanovskaya, “and since we’ve been moving so fast with funding, now we’re deciding about stretching our goals to answer new markets, for example Latin America or Central Europe.”

Romanovskaya and her team have their first product delivery slated for early spring 2017, but are hoping to be able to meet consumer demand for a shipment in time for the holidays.

Nimb will first be available via its website in 2017, with offline retail sales slated to happen within two years.

The ring currently retails for $149, though Romanovskaya noted that should it be launched in emerging markets, the company will explore ways to reduce the cost so it is more widely available.

The goal is to reach as many people as possible. “A call for help saved me,” Romanovskaya said.

Nimb will be available in full sizes from 4 to 12. For more information, visit and the company’s Kickstarter page.

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