Businesses to benefit from new facilities and New Keele Deal
Keele University, in conjunction with local partner organisations, has officially launched two milestone projects which encompass a number of the key priorities outlined in the Government’s new Industrial Strategy.
On Friday (20 January 2017), Innovation Centre 5 (IC5), a £7million joint project between Keele University and Staffordshire County Council, was officially opened by Cllr Mark Winnington, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth at the County Council.
During the same event, which focused on how Keele University is working with local partners to further benefit the local businesses community and regional economy, the New Keele Deal was launched – a £70million research-led collaboration between Keele University and a number of local private and public sector organisations that aims to support around 1,000 Staffordshire businesses to develop and grow, become greener and deliver 700 new high-skilled jobs by 2023.
Speaking about the opening, Cllr Mark Winnington said: “It is a county council priority to support the creation of more high value jobs in Staffordshire through close working with a range of organisations. We have a strong partnership with Keele University – one of the UK’s leading educational and research establishments – to further strengthen our economy.
“Our £7million investment in IC5 is an essential part of our economic growth strategy to create the right conditions for businesses to grow and prosper. We will build on this with our £2million commitment to support the development of Innovation Centre 6, and we look forward to seeing the thriving centres in operation as part of the renowned Science and Innovation Park.”
IC5 is the fifth such facility on the Science and Innovation Park and provides an additional 30,000 sq ft of office space that can accommodate multiple innovative, knowledge-intensive businesses and up to 300 new jobs. The first tenants took residence in late August 2016 and the building is set to be at full capacity by late summer 2017.
The facility is also the first to be completed on the Park’s new development site – an extension which has created 13 plots of land available for businesses and other partners to develop their own bespoke buildings.
Professor Trevor McMillan, Keele University’s Vice-Chancellor, added: “With the completion of Innovation Centre 5, and the prospect of Innovation Centre 6 on the horizon, it is an exciting time not only for the University but for our local community too.
“Following the Government’s announcement regarding the Industrial Strategy, I genuinely believe that Keele University is perfectly placed to support its delivery. For example, we have Staffordshire’s only Science and Innovation Park, which is also one of the largest of its kind in the country, ensuring that businesses here are not only benefiting from great facilities but also unrivalled access to the University’s world-leading research, professional and academic expertise and officially the UK’s most employable graduates.
“We are also driving forward the development of sustainable energy through our Smart Energy Network Demonstrator – a project which will turn the UK’s largest university campus into a living laboratory and testing ground for new energy technologies. By helping to develop the energy innovations of tomorrow, we aim to make a significant carbon saving of up to 4,000 tonnes annually.
“By working side-by-side with local businesses, we are able to share the knowledge and resources that will help them grow, develop new products and create skilled jobs – all of which will have a hugely positive impact on the local area and beyond.”
About Keele University Science and Innovation Park
Keele University Science and Innovation Park (KUSIP) is a unique and picturesque 70 acre science and innovation park currently hosting 40 companies employing over 600 people. The Park is the only such site in Staffordshire and is fully integrated with Keele University which, along with its links to the NHS and local business communities, allows for the easy exchange of concepts, ideas and expertise with immediate access to all academic and research facilities. Further information about the Science and Innovation Park is available at www.kusip.co.uk.
About Innovation Centre 5
Innovation Centre 5 is latest facility to be built at Keele University Science and Innovation Park and is the result of a long and successful partnership between Staffordshire County Council and Keele University, which sees the building funded and owned by the former and managed and maintained by the latter.
It is a BREEAM ‘very good’ rated building offering three floors of flexible open plan units ranging from 1,000 sq ft through to an entire block of 9,000 sq ft. All three floors feature state-of-the-art specification with superfast internet connectivity.
As well as benefiting from on-site facilities management and a range of support services from both the County Council and the Science and Innovation Park, tenants will be given access to all academic and research facilities at the University, offering exclusive opportunities for pioneering start-ups, spin-outs and growing international organisations.
About the New Keele Deal
The New Keele Deal is a plan for investment of up to £70m to deliver a unique deal that aims to stimulate the growth of the knowledge-based economy in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire.
To achieve this, Keele University will work in partnership with Staffordshire County Council, Stoke-on-Trent City Council, Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council, the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust and a range of other public and private sector organisations.
The New Keele Deal will support businesses to access Keele University’s world-class research and facilities, providing training in innovation leadership and facilitate supply chain development across a range of sectors. Collectively, the New Keele Deal will assist businesses in becoming more competitive, producing better products and improving customer services.
Through a range of innovative business support programmes, the New Keele Deal will enable the University to extend its already considerable impact on the local economy by contributing an extra £210m into the local area.
For further information, please visit www.keele.ac.uk/newkeeledeal.