WHY HI LINKS MAY LEAD TO HIGH BUSINESS GROWTH FOR LOCAL COMPANIES
19th February 2007
Small businesses and entrepreneurs throughout Caithness and Sutherland are being urged to grasp a unique opportunity to help boost future company growth, by tapping into a ready-made resource based within UHI Millennium Institute that helps companies crystallise opportunities to move the business forward.
This free service - a ground-breaking university-based initiative called HI Links, is a three-year project funded by a SEEKIT grant from the Scottish Executive, Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and UHI. It helps source academic help to aid company research and development, service enhancement and to build a stronger, leaner business through a wide range of innovative practices and techniques, as Dr Joe Irvine, HI
Links Project Leader, explains; "Small companies throughout Caithness and Sutherland often don't have the luxury of researching new business opportunities, so HI Links will help overcome that and introduce businesses that approach us to academic experts that will help them plan for the future.
Often, small businesses have great ideas but lack the time, money or personnel resource to bring these ideas to fruition. HI Links can help address these issues by accessing funding schemes specific for academic collaboration - this can provide up to two-thirds funding - and in addition, can cover the cost of personnel to work within a company."
HI Links works at a local, regional and national level. If, for example, Northern Highland College or The Environmental Research Institute does not have the appropriate academic expertise, HI Links will find it either through the local UHI partner network or via other
academic institutions throughout Scotland.
Joe Irvine concludes; "We in the Highlands and Islands should be proud to have pioneered an entrepreneurial initiative that is being watched closely nationally -
where companies, particularly small and micro businesses are being offered a wonderful opportunity to attain effective growth.
We have a vibrant indigenous academic sector and I would urge companies throughout Caithness and Sutherland to look upon this as a business resource of knowledge, expertise and know-how that can help their business prosper."
More information on HI Links can be found at
A new £16 million initiative is to be launched in the Highlands to boost innovation. The Northern Innovation Hub (NIH) will focus on four key industry sectors.
A new residential music studio in the Outer Hebrides is set to capitalise on its scenic location and high-end technology to attract both UK and international recording artists. Black Bay Studio has opened for business on the island of Great Bernera just off the west coast of the Isle of Lewis.
It has never been more important for businesses in the Highlands and Islands to target global markets, writes Martin Johnson, HIE's head of international trade and investment. At the same time global markets have never been more accessible to the region, so we are in a good place.
Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has appointed a new director of business and sector development. Originally from County Durham, David Oxley joined the organisation in 2004 as head of operations in Lochaber before moving to Forres with his wife and son in 2011 to take up the role of area manager in Moray.
The development of Inverness Campus moves another step forward with tenders being invited to build a second life science building. Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) is leading on the development of the campus.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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