With Harlow at the cutting edge of the UK’s booming life sciences sector, it is the perfect location for ARU’s new Arise Innovation Hub.
The Harlow building is set to open later this year following the success of the innovation hub at ARU’s Chelmsford campus, which is home to a range of successful businesses large and small.
“The main focus of the hubs is to provide a well-supported and effective environment for early stage businesses in the health, performance and wellbeing sectors. We like to describe our hubs as an ecosystem for entrepreneurs – a place where businesses come to thrive. That’s evidenced by some of the products and services our occupants have developed during their time at Arise,” says Fiona Bodle, ARU’s Assistant Director for Enterprise and Innovation.
"Take FutureNova, for example. The company, who joined Arise in 2014, have won a number of awards for their technological developments. Their range of telehealth accessories include the FlipPad and iBioShield products; medical grade cases for the iPhone and iPad. They are currently working to support Covid-19 response teams in mobile test centres, as well as nursing homes to provide an element of safety for staff and residents alike.
“It’s their pioneering ethos and passion for innovation in their sector which we wholeheartedly support and look for in potential new occupants,” says Fiona. “We’re looking to cultivate a community of professionals that will work side-by-side and contribute positively to the health and wellbeing of our society. FutureNova are just one of these companies.
"Arise Chelmsford is also a hub within the wider community where fledgling ideas can flourish. Our monthly networking events are an opportunity for local businesses, occupants, students and academics to come together, exchange ideas, develop new contacts and learn.”
Previous events have included seminars on IP, funding and investment opportunities, human resources, PR and understanding R&D tax credits.
“The connections entrepreneurs can make are invaluable, engaging with a range of partners and building shared responses to innovative challenges in the region. What we offer to companies is an opportunity to engage with like-minded innovators in their physical environment. And that’s why they really benefit; by inviting academics, stakeholder partners in to a social space with businesses, our aim is to let it all happen organically,” says Fiona.
The new Arise hub is based on the Harlow Science Park, and also offers physical and virtual tenancies to businesses in the health, performance and wellbeing sectors. Its close proximity to other life sciences and biotech businesses in the region and strong relationships with key partners such as the Princess Alexandra Hospital and Public Health England make Arise Harlow an important stakeholder within the UK Innovation Corridor.
Fiona goes on to say, “Delivering the Arise Innovation Hub in Harlow will provide an innovative, inclusive ecosystem for entrepreneurs and will strengthen our philosophy as a regional university, working at the heart of the community. It’s exciting to see the many possibilities for innovative companies to apply their technologies to a range of sectors from health and medical to engineering and IT services. We wouldn’t be who we are today without our diverse range of occupants. We’re looking forward to the future and collaborating with new partners to build a healthier, more sustainable regional economy.”