Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Paying too much for broadband? Move to PlusNet broadband and save£££s. Free setup now available - terms apply. PlusNet broadband.  

 

Academic Partnerships Boost

16th July 2012

Highlands and Islands companies confirm academic partnerships boost business.

Interface providing vital support to businesses.

Businesses in the Highlands & Islands are seeing financial benefits from academic partnerships according to new research, with one hundred per cent of firms surveyed confirming that they would work with universities for a second time.

The new report, compiled by Interface - The knowledge connection for business, asked companies they have assisted in the last year, across the Highlands & Islands, about their experience of working with academic partners to gauge the growth of this important sector and their interest in future collaborations.

Supported by Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council, Interface launched a dedicated Inverness office last year to assist companies requiring access to the country's top academic expertise. The eighteen companies already engaged in collaborative projects supported by Interface forecast an increase in sales and exports of 1.45m as a result of the partnerships.

23.7 million (net GVA) is being added to the Scottish economy every year through successful business and academic partnerships brokered through Interface, and many in the Highlands & Islands have received a welcome economic boost, with almost a third asked expecting to see an increase in profit as a result.

Of the companies asked, six out of ten firms estimate that their reputation will be enhanced as a consequence of collaborating with a University or Research Institute, while over a third secured additional investment. Those companies currently collaborating with universities responded that they would not have considered working with universities had it not been for Interface.

Interface is a Scottish Funding Council-backed initiative that offers a central point of access for industry to Scotland's research base through its unique matchmaking service. Its aim is to maximise business potential by matching a firm with the relevant expertise at universities and research institutes which can help develop solutions to R&D requirements.

Dr Siobhn Jordan, director of Interface, is encouraged by the results: "The findings confirm that academic partnerships are providing real benefits for companies, not only in terms of profit, but also in job generation, product development and increased sales exports.

"It's often difficult for companies to come up with ways to increase their competitiveness, develop new products or exploit new market opportunities, therefore I would urge them to speak with our team in Inverness, which offers free and impartial advice for businesses to help them meet these challenges head on."

Charlotte Wright, director of Business and Sector Development at Highlands and Islands Enterprise, said: "Our partnership with Interface and the Scottish Funding Council has been a great success over the last year. Over 130 companies across the Highlands and Islands have taken part in the initiative to date and we have directly supported 20 collaborative projects which now forecast an increase in sales and exports of 1.45m as a result. Interface provides a unique service to support businesses, social enterprises, community groups and development trusts across the whole of the Highlands and Islands and we look forward to working with them to expand their services."

Laurence Howell's, Senior Director of Skills, Research and Knowledge Exchange at the Scottish Funding Council, said: "I'm delighted to see the investment we've made in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise making such a tangible difference to businesses and employment prospects in this part of Scotland. The new Interface office in Inverness has achieved a great deal in a short space of time which is a tribute to the staff there and to the companies and the universities working hard to increase jobs and growth"

To find out more about Interface and the opportunities available, please visit www.interface-online.org.uk

The Interface Highlands and Islands Team can be contacted at Cowan House, Inverness Retail and Business Park, Inverness IV2 7GF

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

Aerospace And Defence Sector Opportunities In The Region Highlighted At Event
Aerospace and defence sector opportunities in the region highlighted at event Businesses in the Highlands and Islands are being invited to a free workshop to find out how the region can benefit from opportunities in the aerospace, defence, security and space industries.   It will be held in at An Lòchran, Inverness Campus on Tuesday 26 September 2017 The event is organised by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and ADS Scotland which is the Scottish branch of the aerospace, defence, security and space industry trade organisation, ADS.  
Celebrating The Contribution Communities Make To Scotland
Over 250 community leaders from across Scotland will meet in Aviemore today and tomorrow (21-22 September) at a national conference to look at the impact and future role of community-led development on Scotland's social and economic fortunes.   The event, hosted by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and supported by the Scottish Government, brings together community groups, academia and experts to discuss the vital contribution communities make to Scotland and consider how to support their continuing and increasing ambitions.  
Wes Takes Steps To Harness The Waves With New Control Systems Funding
Wave Energy Scotland (WES) has just announced over £660K of funding for 13 new projects aiming to develop innovative control systems for wave energy converters.   This initiative brings together control systems specialists from mature sectors such as aerospace and oil and gas, to work with Scottish technology developers in addressing the challenges of controlling and integrating Wave Energy Converter (WEC) systems and their components.  
HIE Helps Businesses Get Cyber StrongThumbnail for article : HIE Helps Businesses Get Cyber Strong
Highlands and Islands Enterprise is offering its clients across the region support to protect themselves from cyber attacks, by launching the Cyber Strong business project.   Co-inciding with Digital Leaders Cyber Resilience Week (11-15 September 2017), the agency is launching a programme to help local businesses and social enterprises achieve national Cyber Essentials accreditation.  
Workshop Focuses On Food And Drink Innovation
Food and drink businesses looking to grow through innovation are encouraged to register for a free workshop which takes place in Inverness on 31 August.   The event will focus on the new ‘Make Innovation Happen' service which provides a single access point for all innovation support to the Scottish food and drink industry.  
Scottish Expertise Goes On Show At World's Biggest Aquaculture Technology FairThumbnail for article : Scottish Expertise Goes On Show At World's Biggest Aquaculture Technology Fair
Twenty-three Scottish companies are travelling to Norway this week to highlight the country's expertise at the world's largest aquaculture technology exhibition.  Aqua Nor 2017 gets under way in Trondheim on Tuesday (15 August 2017), and runs until Friday (18 August 2017).  
Cabinet secretary stresses role of public sector in supporting NC500Thumbnail for article : Cabinet secretary stresses role of public sector in supporting NC500
The successful North Coast 500 tourist route will need strong co-ordinated support from the public sector to ensure its long term sustainability.   Experiences of the initiative should also be shared with groups around the country looking to develop similar projects.  
Study Shows North Coast 500 Route Added £9million Extra SpendingThumbnail for article : Study Shows North Coast 500 Route Added £9million Extra Spending
The North Coast 500 (NC500) tourist route, launched in 2015, has had a positive impact on both visitor numbers and business trade.   This is according to a new report commissioned by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).  
Hie Infrastrucuture InvestmentsThumbnail for article : Hie Infrastrucuture Investments
Short film highlighting infrastructure investments made across the Highlands and Islands and the impacts these investments are having across the energy sector..  
Highlands And Island Enterprise Appoints Chief ExecutiveThumbnail for article : Highlands And Island Enterprise Appoints Chief Executive
Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has appointed a new chief executive.  Charlotte Wright, who is currently the agency's Director of Business and Sector Development, has held the role of Interim Chief Executive since the end of August last year.  

[Printer Friendly Version]