A team of entrepreneurs from Manchester Business School has won the first prize in the European final of ‘The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) International Business Plan Competition’. Kaffeination Ltd behind the innovative new caffeinated sweets called UPs Solid Energy, beat 14 teams in the finals in Brussels to be crowned champions. They were also crowned with the ‘Rising Star of Europe 2013 award’. Kaffeination are based at the University’s Innovation Centre, UMIC, in its digital accelerator, IQuBit.
Archive for March, 2013
The University of Manchester has been selected as one of 56 partner institutions in the HEFCE/UnLtd Higher Education Support Programme and has been actively seeking entrepreneurial staff, students and alumni to enter the UMI3 Social Enterprise Competition.
Inspirational workshops such as the Social Enterprise Brief Case (SEBC) has really motivated individuals to come forward and submit applications. The sustainability of a social enterprise idea is one of the key points to address for the competition and by participating in workshops and utilising tools such as the Brief Case individuals can be guided through the thought process to produce a well-rounded proposal.
The Social Enterprise Brief Case, a workshop and workbook designed by specialist innovation company Novomodo Ltd, to inspire social enterprise thinking in Higher Education was recently launched at The University of Manchester Innovation Centre. Twenty five attendees including members of staff, postgraduate and undergraduate students experienced a blend of tools and techniques to help them think about social enterprise and put their ideas in motion. A series of surgeries on specific ideas was run in parallel to the main group sessions.
The Social Enterprise Brief Case workbook has been designed to assist University members of staff or students in addressing the key building blocks of a social enterprise, utilising easy to use tools to help them along the journey. It allows users to put together an outline describing their idea and how they would implement it (the ‘Brief Case’) so they can apply for funding to try it out.
Last night, The University of Manchester and its technology transfer arm, UMIP, were announced joint runners-up in the Activating Impact category of the 2013 BBSRC Fostering Innovation Awards held at Altitude 360 at the Millbank Tower in London.
Activating Impact is a new competition created to celebrate the work of successful Knowledge Exchange and Commercialisation (KEC) teams or individuals that make essential contributions in turning excellent bioscience research supported by BBSRC into real-life applications. The University of Manchester places great emphasis on KEC and through its Faculty of Life Sciences (FLS) is a major recipient of funding from the BBSRC.
Professor Ian Kimber, FLS’s Associate Dean for Business Development has been working closely with Dr Rich Ferrie, Head of UMIP, to ensure intimate connectivity between the researchers and IP specialists.
This has contributed to the successful transfer of technology and resultant healthcare impact over many years with Ai2 Ltd and Conformetrix as just two examples recognised by the judges. As joint runners-up, The University and UMIP will receive £25,000 which will help appoint an “IP Impact Officer” for one year to work closely with Professor Kimber and Dr Rich Ferrie on a pilot programme aimed at maximising impact from the pool of IP emanating from FLS.
Professor Ian Kimber comments: “I was delighted to learn that our bid ‘Activating Impact’ was awarded joint second place in the last night’s finals. I believe this achievement recognises our commitment to developing new models and new mechanisms to ensure that the fruits of our investment in research are exploited quickly and effectively to deliver real health and economic benefits.”
Ai2 Ltd has developed anti-infective peptide technology for use in ophthalmics and in medical devices, such as urinary catheters and stents as well being utilised in wound dressings and consumer products. Conformetrix’s platform technology uses nuclear magnetic resonance analysis to determine 3D molecular structures of drug compounds with high accuracy. This is a world first capability which enables Conformetrix to develop a pipeline of proprietary drugs against therapeutically important targets.
Congratulations go to The University of Edinburgh/Research and Innovation Ltd & The Roslin Institute as category winners and also to The University of Cambridge/Cambridge Enterprise Ltd as joint-runners up.
Last night, the British Venture Capital Association (BVCA) launched its much-awaited ‘Tech Country’ report to its members, technology entrepreneurs and the private equity and venture capital community at the University’s Innovation Centre, UMIC.
‘Tech Country’ highlights five key clusters of successful business outside of London: Cambridge, Manchester, Bristol, Aberdeen and Birmingham that have the potential to bring enormous economic and social benefits to the UK as a whole.
The launch included opening remarks by Professor Rod Coombs, the University’s Deputy President and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, an overview of the report by James Clark of the BVCA followed by a panel debate featuring successful entrepreneurs from the locations featured in the report and a drinks reception.
James Clark commented: “The BVCA’s objective for Tech Country was to return the focus of our political leaders to the regions by highlighting the role that organisations like UMIᶟ will play in forming the technological future of this country. The event showed the enormous potential of the emerging technology cluster in Manchester, provided the grass roots efforts of the technological, entrepreneurial, and investment community are properly supported.”
You can read the executive summary and download the full report from the BVCA’s website