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Tech City UK and UCL launch the Digital Business Academy

UCL and Tech City UK is launching the Digital Business Academy, the world’s first government-supported online learning platform to provide digital and business skills for anyone aspiring to start, grow or join a digital business. The programme is open to all UK residents and requires no pre-qualification.
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UCL Awards for Enterprise 2014

UCL Announces Seventh Annual Enterprise Awards

UCL has announced its Awards for Enterprise to recognise the achievements of students, graduates and academic staff to furthering enterprise and entrepreneurship on campus with a ceremony on the evening of Thursday 29 May.

In a first for the Awards, which are in their seventh year, designer Wayne Hemmingway was presented with the inaugural ‘UCL Entrepreneurial Alumnus of the Year’. He was selected by a panel that included members of UCL’s Enterprise Division, our Alumni Relations team and a small number of external judges.

New for 2014, the award recognises an alumnus of UCL who is a serial entrepreneur and the impact they have had on wider society.

In another first for the Awards, the inaugural UCL CPD and Short Course Award recognised the ground-breaking Modular Training Programme for the Bioprocess Industries (MBI) Programme, which has up-skilled 800 professionals from 300 companies, in 30 countries worldwide.

In their seventh year, the Awards celebrate the exciting new business ideas of student and graduate entrepreneurs – ranging from Granddad’s Kitchen, offering Caribbean seasonings inspired by the father of ‘Hackney Heroine’ Pauline Pearce, to a new web platform set to revolutionise property investing – as well as showcasing the entrepreneurial activities of staff and sector-leading partnerships between UCL and the business community.

UCL Corporate Enterprise Partner of the Year - Eisai

Following a long-standing partnership to further neuroscience research, Eisai, the Japanese pharmaceutical company, has been awarded the UCL Corporate Partner of the Year Award 2014. The organisations have also recently formed a major drug discovery alliance with the concept of open innovation to investigate radical new ways of treating neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

The collaboration maximises UCL’s world-class, early stage and translational research in neurodegenerative diseases, and Eisai’s expertise in drug discovery, development and bringing new agents to market in an effort to increase benefits to patients.   

Speaking about the Award, Dr. Lynn Kramer, President of Eisai’s Neuroscience Product Creation Unit, said:

“Eisai is extremely proud of the ‘Open Innovation’ we are building through our partnership with UCL. This prestigious award recognises all of the hard work that continues to go on throughout both organisations to push the boundaries of drug discovery research and bring new solutions to people with neurodegenerative conditions.”

The best and brightest student and graduate entrepreneurs were also recognised, with a total of £100,000 in funding provided as part of UCL’s Bright Ideas Awards, designed to support the development of new businesses emerging from UCL. A full list can be viewed here.

These Bright Ideas Awards, first established in 2008, are designed to support the development of new businesses emerging from UCL. A fund of £50,000 is available to businesses led by UCL students from any department; of that £25,000 is available for businesses led by undergraduate students and £25,000 is available for businesses led by post-graduate and alumni students.

Eisai is extremely proud of the ‘Open Innovation’ we are building through our partnership with UCL. This prestigious award recognises all of the hard work that continues to go on throughout both organisations to push the boundaries of drug discovery research and bring new solutions to people with neurodegenerative conditions.

Dr. Lynn Kramer, President of Eisai’s Neuroscience Product Creation Unit

In addition, since last year an additional £50,000 loan pot is available for awards to members of the MSc Technology Entrepreneurship course and for graduates from the last eighteen months who’ve started businesses on graduation.

The successful applicants had to supply a full business plan for their idea, including specific details of how the Bright Ideas funds would be used to finance the business development, and benefited from the input of UCL Student Business Advisor Lillian Shapiro in honing their plans. Those chosen were done so because it was felt they would benefit most from the money in terms of expanding their businesses.

The Awards for Enterprise also saw the successes of UCL’s academic staff recognised, with an award sponsored by UCL Business PLC – the university’s technology transfer company – presented to Professor Amit Nathwani for his work on Factor VIII gene therapy for Haemophilia A, which has subsequently been licensed to BioMarin Pharmaceuticals.

UCL Consultants, offering consultancy with the university’s world-leading experts, presented their award to Professor Gordon Blunn and Professor Alister Hart for consultancy work on implants.