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Recognition for business incubator

26 November 2012

Cardiff medicentre logo

The business incubator for biotech and medtech start-ups, Cardiff Medicentre, has become the first of its kind in Wales to be accredited by the leading UK business incubation standards body, UKBI.

A joint venture between Cardiff University, Cardiff Council, Welsh Government and Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, the Cardiff Medicentre has been awarded Development Stage status.

Cardiff Medicentre's accreditation recognises the achievements and thriving incubation infrastructure in place at the facility which is currently home to 20 life sciences businesses, eight of which are spin-outs from Cardiff University research. These include the innovative pharmaceutical company Diurnal; the leading ultrasound training simulation company MedaPhor; and Asalus Medical Instruments.

Dr Mark Bowman, Director of Innovation at Cardiff Medicentre, said: "We are proud of our track record in helping these companies get off to the best possible start through offering affordable space and financial, legal and practical support. This accreditation by UKBI lends further credence to what we're doing here at Cardiff Medicentre and it reinforces the message that business incubation in the life sciences sector works in very real terms.

"We have worked hard to develop what is now a first-rate biotech and medtech incubator. Businesses join us when they're ready to start developing and exploiting what began as a seedling of an idea. Our aim is that they leave as established companies, in many cases operating in global markets."

Past tenants of Cardiff Medicentre include the international microspheres company and Cardiff University spin-out, QChip, and Cardiff Research Consortium which went on to be acquired by Capita Group Plc for £11.6M.

The award of Development Stage status confirms the importance of Cardiff Medicentre as a national asset for the Welsh life sciences sector at a time of intense activity in supporting these types businesses.

Dr Bowman explains: "Given recent announcements about the formation of a £100M life sciences venture capital fund, there has never been a greater need for high quality specialist business incubation space operating in line with international best practice. Cardiff Medicentre has clearly demonstrated that it serves this purpose for Welsh life science startups."

Peter Harman, Chief Executive Officer of UKBI, said: "Business incubation is a unique and highly flexible combination of people, processes and infrastructure designed to add value to new and small stage businesses by supporting them through the early stages of development, growth and change. We have been reviewing business incubation environments for many years and we are pleased to be able to accredit Cardiff Medicentre. We were particularly impressed by the dedication shown by Mark and his team in supporting their clients and indeed this was echoed by feedback from the entrepreneurs we spoke to within the centre."

The Business Incubation Development Framework developed by UKBI is widely regarded as the UK's national standard in business incubation. The UKBI is a professional association of members actively involved in enterprise, innovation and sustainable economic growth.