Global ambitions for new UMI3 CEO
Andrew Wilkinson has been appointed Chief Executive of The University of Manchester’s intellectual property commercialisation company, UMI3, with an ambition to make it a global leader for turning academic ideas into enterprises with a social and economic impact.
An alumnus of the University, Andrew is a successful CEO and Managing Director with extensive experience growing international technology companies. He spent many years leading complex, multi-national businesses, operating across a wide range of sectors. He specialises in the industrialisation and commercialisation of innovative technologies, business growth and turn-around.
Andrew said: “My focus will be on accelerating the number and value of high-quality spin-outs and IP licencing deals coming out of the University. I want my team to engage even more closely with academic colleagues, industry, the investment community, funding organisations and government. My goal is to make The University of Manchester a global centre of excellence for technology transfer.”
Andrew joined The University of Manchester in mid-2016 as CEO of its subsidiary company Graphene Enabled Systems Ltd (GES). The GES organisation supports the development and launch of new spin-out businesses which use graphene and 2D materials to enhance the performance of their products. GES has supported the creation of several University spin-outs including Grafine, Atomic Mechanics, Graphene Water Technologies, Laser Graphene and a new business manufacturing a sensitive, chip-based ‘electronic nose’ to sniff the air for VOC compounds. GES is also actively creating an exciting partnership with a global environmental consultancy to industrialise and commercialise a new family of hybrid graphene-enhanced composite materials.
Before joining GES, Andrew was Regional Managing Director of the French power equipment manufacturer Socomec SA. At Socomec, Andrew led three subsidiaries covering North America and the British Isles, where he significantly grew the businesses’ revenue, profitability and market share.
Prior to this, he was Sales and Marketing Director of a group business of ICI plc, which manufactured a broad range of industrial and consumer products based on coated and thermally stabilised PET film. At ICI, Andrew and his teams developed and launched to a worldwide customer-base many new, innovative products in markets as diverse as digital imaging, security ID, printable electronics, 3D industrial decoration, fuel cells and medical diagnostics. He also negotiated large licencing deals with major global OEMs.
Andrew added: “I’m greatly looking forward to my new role and understand the importance that IP commercialisation plays in enabling the University to meet its strategic objectives.
“The launch of successful University spin-out business and the licencing of University IP creates significant economic and social impact. Building on the excellent work that UMI3 has already achieved, I intend to evolve the organisation to meet the opportunities and challenges the University will face in the coming years.”
Andrew will take over from the organisation’s current CEO, Clive Rowland. Clive has been appointed as the University’s Associate Vice-President for Intellectual Property Matters. The new role will take effect in January 2019. He will work closely with Professor Luke Georghiou, Deputy President and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, and other senior colleagues, to inform and advise on IP policy, IP good practice and benchmarking; IP aspects of strategic alliances and contracts; and Clive will also act as an IP ambassador for the University.
Professor Luke Georghiou, who is also a non-executive director of UMI3, said: “Andrew has a strong track record of developing hugely successful spin-out companies from some of the world-class research carried out by our academics. He will be an important driving force in effecting the step-change we are planning, to create the economic impact, jobs and social benefits which are an important contribution from the University to our city and nation.”
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