SETsquared is the global no. 1 business incubator and enterprise partnership of the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey.


New funding will unlock further vital support for UKs growth companies


New funding will unlock further vital support for UKs growth companies

Agencies News::

Research England has announced its support for SETsquared’s Scale-Up Programme for a further two years from the Connecting Capabilities Fund.

More businesses will be able to unlock vital R&D investment support following the announcement of a two year extension to the SETsquared Scale-Up Programme. Businesses in high-growth sectors such as health tech and sustainable tech will now be able to access expert support to raise public and private co-investment into their research and development and innovation.

The Scale-Up Programme has broken new ground by pooling the research talent from across six partner universities to create new research and development and innovation partnerships with high-growth businesses at the leading-edge of technologies including quantum technology, cyber security, precision medicine and zero emission propulsion systems. The Programme has already helped its 300 member companies secure £80m of investment in R&D partnerships with the SETsquared universities.

Stephen Mayers, Head of Scale-Up, SETsquared said: “We’re delighted with the news from Research England. There are so many great examples of successful R&D collaborations that have been established by the Scale-Up Programme. Oxford Brain Diagnostics was awarded funding by the National Institute for Health Research as part of a £1.4m collaborative R&D project that it is leading to assess its technology as a tool to identify and predict Alzheimer’s disease progression. The Scale-Up Programme identified and linked the company with the appropriate academic expertise in Cardiff University’s and the University of Southampton’s Schools of Medicine and provided professional grant proposal development resources to help set up and secure funding for the project. This is a great example of the Scale-Up Programme in action – we support innovative companies to access pivotal funding which will accelerate their growth and development.”

Other examples of successful R&D collaborations which were supported through the Scale-Up Programme include:

Ecomar Propulsion is investing in a £326k collaborative R&D project with the Centre for Future Clean Mobility at the University of Exeter to develop its zero-emission propulsion systems for the commercial marine sector.

sees.ai is leading a consortium of sixteen partners, including the University of Bristol’s Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering in a £1.4m project to develop automated drones for remote inspection and monitoring of industrial sites.

Simply Do and Cardiff University’s Business School are collaborating on a £376k project to develop a digital platform which will allow manufacturers to search and engage start-ups and SMEs into their supply chain addressing issues such as lack of diversity and IP disclosure.

Adaptavate alongside the University of Bath’s Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering are collaborating on a £498k R&D project to develop the world’s first gypsum plasterboard alternative created from agricultural crop waste.

Leading AI software firm OnCorps is working with the University of Southampton’s IT Innovation Centre on a £792k project to develop state-of-the-art AI algorithms for automating error detection for use in the financial services sector.

Combine AI is collaborating on a £227k project with Dr Sotiris Moschoyiannis from the Centre for Mathematical and Computational Biology, University of Surrey to develop a platform that aggregates local goods and services to help improve discoverability, provide the digital infrastructure for connecting businesses and customers, and to get the service or product delivered to the customer in the most efficient, carbon-friendly way.

All these new collaborations have received support from the Scale-Up Programme and will result in the commercialisation of new vital products and services which will transform healthcare, contribute to the race to net zero and shape our world post-COVID pandemic.

Simon Bond, Innovation Director, SETsquared says: “SETsquared has built a vibrant innovation ecosystem around our partner universities’ (Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey) globally competitive research talent and portfolios, with the very welcome addition of Cardiff University partnering on the Scale-Up Programme.”

“Over this next two years we will support a number of initiatives to grow our ecosystem by extending our partnership with the UK Business Angels Association to provide national access to angel investment, and with a new collaboration with the Northern Accelerator, to accelerate the growth of spin-out companies from our partner universities. We will also deliver on our ambition to establish a new venture capital fund to invest in the high growth companies from our region during this period.”

Companies seeking support to develop their R&D and innovations, can find out and more and apply for the Scale-Up Programme here: https://www.setsquared.co.uk/programme/scale-up-programme/

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