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SETsquared partnership ranked as the world’s leading business incubator

SETsquared partnership ranked as world’s top business incubator

The SETsquared partnership has been ranked as the world’s leading business incubator for its outstanding contribution to developing the next generation of UK tech entrepreneurs.

SETsquared, which is the partnership between the universities of Exeter, Bath, Bristol, Southampton and Surrey, was ranked in first place at the World Incubation Summit in Toronto, Canada.

The ranking is a result of the world's most extensive benchmark study of university-linked business incubators and accelerators, conducted by UBI Global.  It strengthens SETsquared’s position as ‘number one’ in its field, having maintained its world-leading status since 2015.

Since its conception, SETsquared has helped over 2,500 UK hi-tech start-ups to develop and raise more than £1.5bn of investment, as well as contributing more than £3.8bn to the UK economy.

In the last year, more than 880 entrepreneurs participated in SETsquared programmes, while it incubated 381 companies to bring in a record £218m investment – the highest amount in its history.

Sean Fielding, Director of Innovation, Impact and Business at the University of Exeter, said: "It is great to be part of the World’s number one business incubator for the second time.  The University’s Innovation Centre and the Exeter Science Park are helping to put Exeter on the global map for business incubation. 

Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said: “The SETsquared partnership has not only helped nurture and grow British technology businesses, but it has also contributed nearly £4 billion to the UK economy which is an incredible achievement. 

“Being recognised as one of the world’s leading business incubators is fantastic news and testament to the hard work and dedication of the team at SETsquared and the universities they work with.” 

Joe Pearce, head of business support, at SETsquared in Exeter, added: “We’re delighted to be acknowledged once again as a leader in the world of business incubation and it is an honour to be recognised by UBI Global in this way alongside the best performing university business incubators and accelerator programmes.

“This ranking reflects the commitment of the SETsquared team, a bespoke business support, acceleration and incubation environment here in Exeter that embraces innovation and enterprise and, of course, the sheer talent and drive of the entrepreneurs and companies that we have the privilege to work with.”

One of the companies to have benefitted from the SETsquared partnership is Exeter-based Milkalyser, which have developed an innovative tech that helps famers monitor the fertility of dairy cows.  

Toby Mottram, founder of Milkalyser, said: “SETsquared are really good at identifying new technology companies and promoting them to investors. We’d been trying for investment for six months, then suddenly with SETsquared it all happened very quickly. Firstly, in the training they gave me to promote the business and also in making introductions and filtering the process. So, when we attended the SETsquared Investment Showcase I was approached by investors before I’d even presented.”

Date: 23 February 2018

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