Oxford Innovation helps Wales boost growth of life sciences firms

Posted on 20 Jan 2012

The Welsh Government appointed Oxford Innovation to deliver a new programme to assist start-up and early stage life sciences firms with high growth potential to grow more rapidly over the next three years.

The High Potential Starts programme, jointly funded by the Welsh Government and the European Regional Development Fund, is a key component of the Welsh Government’s strategy to support sustainable high growth businesses.

Oxford Innovation’s team of advisors and coaches based across Wales will work with entrepreneurs who are forming new companies and the management teams of early stage businesses. Support will be available for firms in the biosciences, medical devices and diagnostics fields and associated supply chain technologies.

The goal is to create new high value-added businesses and help early stage firms expand into major companies, generating sustainable local employment and further cementing the position of Wales’ burgeoning life sciences industry.

Wales Business Minister, Edwina Hart, said: “This programme represents a significant investment in the development of business potential and will support our most dynamic businesses and entrepreneurs to help them grow and prosper, creating high quality jobs and boosting the economy.”

Services provided by Oxford Innovation will include coaching and mentoring, advice on intellectual property protection and exploitation, support with business planning and marketing, access to sources of funding and introductions to potential investors, workshops on business and technical topics relevant to life science firms, and access to business and knowledge networks

Oxford Innovation specialises in business support and mentoring programmes for start-up and growing companies, manages three investment networks that help companies to secure funding and a network of 20 innovation centres that provide a supportive environment for over 500 early stage businesses.

The life sciences industry in Wales continues to grow and it is estimated that there are more than 300 companies employing over 15,000 people and contributing around £1.3 billion to the economy.