Engineering entrepreneurs and the leading engineering innovators who mentor them met last night at the Royal Academy of Engineering to reflect on their achievements as members of the Academy’s Enterprise Hub, which is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year.
Originally started as a virtual hub funding seven spin-outs a year, the Hub now has a physical home - the Taylor Centre – within the Royal Academy of Engineering and now has a membership of 73 entrepreneurs and 54 SME leaders.
In just five years, the Enterprise Hub has been a catalyst for the creation of 57 new businesses and nearly 300 highly skilled new jobs. Seed funding from the Hub has resulted in new businesses leveraging more than 15 times that investment - a total of more than £60 million.
The Hub has supported a wide variety of entrepreneurs, but all have at the heart of their business a great technology or engineering idea. The Academy supports Enterprise Hub members for a year, which is twice as long as accelerators typically support entrepreneurs, and it takes no equity in the businesses.
Examples of successful of Enterprise Hub members include:
Ian Shott CBE FREng, founding chair of the Academy’s Enterprise Committee, said:
“From the very beginning we were committed to transforming engineering entrepreneurs with high potential ideas into the business leaders of tomorrow, and to having a positive impact on our society. That’s our approach and we believe it really works.
“The first five years of the Enterprise Hub have seen rapid growth in the support that we can provide and we want to continue that trend. Our vision is to be a key driver in creating sustainable wealth for the economy by fostering a culture of entrepreneurship, innovation and success among engineers in the UK.”