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

16/7/2012

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 Siobhán 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

Subsea cabling work started to create Scottish islands fibre broadband networkThumbnail for article : Subsea cabling work started to create Scottish islands fibre broadband network
The biggest fibre cable laying project undertaken in the UK in recent years has begun on the West Coast of Scotland to deliver superfast broadband to some of the country's most remote island communities.   Thousands of homes and businesses are set to benefit from the publicly funded digital network being built to bring world class connectivity to Scotland.  
Global buyers to sample Highlands and Islands food and drinkThumbnail for article : Global buyers to sample Highlands and Islands food and drink
Twenty-one food and drink businesses from the Highlands and Islands will attend an unprecedented ‘meet the buyer' event ahead of the Commonwealth Games.   The Showcasing Scotland event is the first large scale event of its type to be run for the Scottish food and drink industry.  
Highlands And Islands Success At The Scottish EDGE AwardsThumbnail for article : Highlands And Islands Success At The Scottish EDGE Awards
Four Highlands and Islands companies won a total of £173,500 last week in the fourth round of the Scottish EDGE competition.   The Scottish EDGE competition is designed to help innovative young Scottish companies to expand and grow by creating more jobs in Scotland and taking advantage of opportunities to move into international markets.  
Highlands and Islands businesses polled on Scotland's digital progress
A survey has ben launched to poll around 2,000 companies across the Highlands and Islands on how technology and access to the web impacts on how they do business.   The research, which is part of a Scotland wide project, aims to measure current progress in the digital economy and the extent to which businesses are using and exploiting online opportunities.  
Highlands and Islands businesses polled on Scotland's digital progress
A survey is being launched today (Wednesday 11 June) to poll around 2,000 companies across the Highlands and Islands on how technology and access to the web impacts on how they do business.   The research, which is part of a Scotland wide project, aims to measure current progress in the digital economy and the extent to which businesses are using and exploiting online opportunities.  
Investing Women launches in Highlands and Islands
HIGHLANDS and Islands Enterprise (HIE) is investing in Scotland's first women-focused network designed to encourage more female angel investors and entrepreneurs.  Investing Women is being launched in the region tomorrow (Thursday June 5).  
[Fishmongers]6/6/2014
Growing worldwide demand for Caithness seafood company's produceThumbnail for article : Growing worldwide demand for Caithness seafood company's produce
A Caithness based processor and supplier of locally sourced shellfish is to further expand its premises to help manage the growing worldwide demand for its products.   Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) is supporting JPL Shellfish with a grant of £60,000 which will also allow the company to increase its workforce.  
Investing Women Launches in Highlands and Islands
Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) is investing in Scotland's first women-focused network designed to encourage more female angel investors and entrepreneurs.   Investing Women is being launched in the region tomorrow (Thursday June 5).  
HIE announces funding for the future management of the Carloway Estate
An estate on the Isle of Lewis will come into community ownership thanks to grants announced this week from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and Scottish Land Fund (SLF).   The Carloway Estate will purchase over 11,000 acres of land on the north-west coast of the Isle of Lewis that takes in over 200 crofts spread across seven townships including Callanish, Breasclete, Tolsta Chaolais, and a number of outlying islands.  
Sir Richard Branson calls on Scottish Entrepreneurs to make the dreams for renewable energy a realityThumbnail for article : Sir Richard Branson calls on Scottish Entrepreneurs to make the dreams for renewable energy a reality
Media and airline businessman Sir Richard Branson is calling on Scottish entrepreneurs to challenge what he describes as ‘the climate change sceptics’ with the facts about the changing environment.   Sir Richard was speaking to delegates attending the 14th All Energy Conference and Exhibition in Aberdeen, Speaking live from his Caribbean island to Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) Director of Energy and Low Carbon, Calum Davidson, Sir Richard confirmed that he was once a sceptic on climate change but he was persuaded to think again by former American Vice President Al Gore and a range of scientists.  

[Printer Friendly Version]