New fund launched to support university startups

A new £3 million fund has been launched to kick-start university research projects into full-blown startup enterprises.

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) said the Innovation to Commercialisation of University Research (ICURe) pilot programme “will allow even more commercially-promising ideas to get to market more quickly”.

The fund will allow early-career researchers to find the “right route” to commercialisation and help them develop the necessary business skills, connections and expertise to profit from their research project.

Funding will be primarily available for projects in the innovation and technology space, with up to £35,000 available per venture.

The latest research suggests that for every £1 of investment spent through the scheme, it generates almost £4 for the wider economy.

So far, the pilot has engaged 160 university research teams to generate more than 11,000 business links and create 120 jobs across 44 new companies.

Business Secretary, Greg Clark said: “Britain is famous for its innovations. From the humble toothbrush to hip replacements, the ATM to the World Wide Web – these inventions have had a huge impact on our daily lives.

“Up and down the UK, some of the brightest and best talent are undertaking research which can deliver extraordinary innovations that will transform our society for the better.

“Through the Industrial Strategy, the 4 grand challenges, and the funding announced today, we are helping turn innovative new ideas into products and services which could help change our lives and keep the UK as a world leader in developing the products of tomorrow.”

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