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Business and innovation partnerships

Find contact information for business and innovation partnerships staff.

The Business & Innovation Partnerships (BIP) team works with large firms, external partners and SMEs in key sectors to forge institutional-level business partnerships that will extend UCL’s research into new areas and lead to new innovations with industry. The Acting Director is Michael Reynier.

View members of the team by sector or specialism:


Creative industries


We’re rebuilding our Creative Industries team and will be recruiting from September 2022. In the meantime, please direct any enquiries to michael.reynier@ucl.ac.uk.


Pharma and healthcare


Brian Carter
Dr Brian Carter

Principal Partnerships Manager (Pharma & Healthcare)

Tel: 020 3108 7947 (internal: 57947)
Email: brian.g.carter@ucl.ac.uk

Brian focuses on the development of strategic partnerships between external organisations and UCL researchers in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors. He has a particular interest in work related to small molecule drug discovery, structural biology and informatics.

Contact Brian about:

  • opportunities to partner with UCL researchers (if you’re a commercial or not-for-profit organisation)
  • opening a dialogue with an external organisation about a research project or idea (if you’re a UCL academic)
  • exploring an academic-industrial collaboration (if you’re unsure how to start the process)
  • strategically developing your academic-industrial partnership

Before joining UCL, Brian was Corporate Relations Coordinator at the University of Cambridge. Before that he worked at the Institution of Engineering and Technology and spent a year working at the Royal Society of Chemistry. He spent 10 years working at IBM, and 10 years as a research scientist for GlaxoSmithKline. He's a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, a Chartered Chemist and a Chartered Scientist. 


Dr Vassilis Georgiadis
Dr Vassilis Georgiadis

Principal Partnerships Manager (Pharma & Healthcare)

Tel: 020 3108 6962 (internal: 56962)
Email: v.georgiadis@ucl.ac.uk

Vassilis focuses on the development of strategic partnerships between external organisations and UCL researchers in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors. He has a particular interest in work related to oncology, immunology, neuroscience, cardiometabolic disorders and the microbiome, advanced therapies (e.g. cell and gene therapy), biologics, devices and diagnostics, healthcare engineering, and digital health. 

He also co-chairs the Translation & Industry Delivery Group of the UCL Institute of Healthcare Engineering.

Contact Vassilis about:

  • opportunities to partner with UCL researchers (if you’re a commercial or not-for-profit organisation)
  • opening a dialogue with an external organisation about a research project or idea (if you’re a UCL academic)
  • exploring an academic-industrial collaboration (if you’re unsure how to start the process)
  • strategically developing your academic-industrial partnership

Before joining UCL Innovation & Enterprise, Vassilis was a Business and Innovation Manager at UCL’s Translational Research Office, supporting industrial research collaboration activities. Before that he was one of the founding members of Molecular Warehouse, a UK molecular diagnostics and digital health startup.

Vassilis is a molecular and cell biologist by training, with over 10 years’ academic research experience in biomedicine. He holds a BSc in Genetics from Queen Mary University, an MSc in Clinical Neurosciences from UCL, and a DPhil in Cell Biology from the University of Sussex.


Technology, engineering and built environment


Andrew Huddart
Andrew Huddart

Principal Partnerships Manager (New Technologies, Energy & Engineering Sectors) 

Tel: 020 3108 6980 (internal: 56980)
Mobile: 07976 673435
Email: a.huddart@ucl.ac.uk

Andrew focuses on developing significant innovation partnerships between UCL and companies or civic partners that use digital or operational technologies. His areas of specialisation include digitisation, energy transformation, niche manufacturing and using engineering creatively to tackle unmet needs across society.

Andrew also leads the Innovation & Enterprise team’s support for UCL East.

Contact Andrew about:

  • opportunities to partner with UCL researchers (if you’re a business or civic sector organisation), across all campuses, including the PEARL and UCL East developments
  • opening a dialogue with an external partner about some applied research (if you’re a UCL academic)
  • strategically developing your existing academic-based innovation partnership
  • exploring an academic-industrial collaboration (if you’re unsure how to start the process)

Before joining UCL, Andrew managed partnerships for innovation for over 15 years, working in the UK, New Zealand and United States across public, private and higher education sectors. His professional background includes over a decade as a financial journalist for Reuters, and business reporting in the shipping sector. His first degree is a BSc Maritime Studies, and he holds an MSc in Medical Device innovation from Cranfield University.


Dr Ann Thorpe
Dr Ann Thorpe

Senior Partnerships Manager (Advanced Urban Systems)

Tel: 020 3108 6740 (internal: 56740)
Mobile: 07447 5610030 (preferred)
Email: ann.thorpe@ucl.ac.uk

Ann focuses on facilitating relationships with UCL’s partners in the realm of urban services, particularly smart and sustainable cities and sectors such as transport, built environment, and infrastructure. 

Contact Ann about:

  • finding partners, whether looking from outside UCL in, or from UCL out
  • tools and techniques for developing partnerships
  • agreements, such as non-disclosure or heads of terms
  • networking and connections in the realm of smart and sustainable cities

Before joining UCL Innovation & Enterprise, Ann worked in several groups around UCL, including the Transport Institute, the Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy, and the Bartlett School of Architecture. She also has experience developing partnerships while holding roles in government and in businesses. She studied at University of California Berkeley, Stanford and the Open University and has expertise in sustainable design and development.


Dr Laura Bovo
Dr Laura Bovo

Innovation Networks Manager

Tel: 020 3108 6985 (internal: 56985)
Email: l.bovo@ucl.ac.uk

Laura focuses on developing significant innovation partnerships between UCL and companies or civic partners that use digital or operational technologies. Her areas of specialisation include the space sector, quantum technologies, sustainable chemistry, clean energy and applied physics in medicine. 

Laura is responsible for supporting innovation networks across disciplines.

Contact Laura about:

  • developing an innovation network, in particular for support and guidance to help strengthen and focus your ideas and ambitions
  • advice on the range of knowledge exchange funding pathways and opportunities available to incubate and launch innovation networks and similar collaborations
  • ways to stimulate innovation and facilitate external partnerships (if you’re unsure how to start the process)
  • developing multi-stakeholder partnerships, and strengthening the links between science, policy and the public

Laura is a chemist by training, with almost a decade’s experience of academic research in magnetism. She holds a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Padova, Italy, and worked as a researcher at the London Centre for Nanotechnology at UCL from 2011 to 2018. Laura is a member of the Institute of Physics and of the Royal Society of Chemistry, and sits on group committees for both institutions. More information about Laura's publications is available on IRIS.


Public sector and the professions

The Public Sector and Professions (PSP) team specialises in developing partnerships with public sector organisations, social enterprises and the third sector (charitable, voluntary and community groups and organisations).


Dr Michael Reynier
Dr Michael Reynier

Principal Partnerships Manager (Public Sector & the Professions)

Tel: 020 3108 7945 (internal: 57945)
Email: michael.reynier@ucl.ac.uk

Michael leads on business innovation partnerships between UCL and the public sector and the professions. He’s responsible for developing and implementing overarching partnership strategies for key public sector and profession stakeholders such as the Greater London Authority (GLA), local authorities and professional and membership associations such as London First, the CBI and the Knowledge Quarter.

Contact Michael about: 

  • opening a dialogue with a public sector organisation or a professional body
  • information on how UCL is currently engaging with selected public sector and professional organisations
  • opportunities for department, research centre or faculty members to apply their expertise to the public sector or professions
  • opportunities for public sector or professional membership organisations to partner with UCL academics

Michael has 14 years’ experience of catalysing partnerships. Before joining UCL, he was Deputy CEO of London Higher, a membership association of nearly 40 of London’s universities. In this role he promoted higher education in London to external stakeholders and liaised with key London agents such as the Mayor’s Office and various business organisations. He also set up collaborations between universities, including medical schools, on urban research and around student entrepreneurship.

Before this he was project coordinator for archaeology in the national Learning & Teaching Network based at the University of Glasgow. He’s also been a junior lecturer in archaeology at the University of Leicester.


James Jennings
James Jennings

Senior Partnership Manager (Public Sector)

Tel: 020 2108 6606 (internal: 56606)
Email: james.c.jennings@ucl.ac.uk

James helps build and maintain partnerships and relationships with a range of public sector organisations.

Contact James about:

  • building links and interactions with local government (and entities that sit within it)
  • collaborations with third sector and organisations with a strong footprint in the public sector arena
  • public policy work in London, UK and overseas
  • secondment opportunities to bring public sector staff into UCL to work with academics

James has extensive experience working in local government. He’s led on economic development and business growth, regeneration, housing, and policy and strategy for three local authorities in London and Essex. This included change management, international links and embedding equality, diversity and inclusion policy and practice. He also has experience in the third sector, chairing a charity and a community development trust in south east London. In all these roles James developed and maintained relationships with a range of statutory bodies, businesses and education providers.

James joined UCL from London South Bank University where he worked on complex change management projects and developing new ways of working through innovation. He has an MSc in Politics & Government and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.


Helen Tsui
Dr Helen Tsui

Partnership Manager (Public Sector)

Tel: 020 3108 9096 (internal: 59096)
Email: helen.tsui@ucl.ac.uk

Helen supports and oversees UCL-wide engagement with the Mayor of London’s strategies. She’s also responsible for UCL Innovation & Enterprise’s engagement with local authorities, especially around UCL’s campuses in Bloomsbury and east London.

Contact Helen about: 

  • bringing UCL academic expertise into the public sector
  • developing innovation and enterprise partnerships 
  • helping UCL faculties and professional services to support partner organisations to be innovative and enterprising
  • organising communications and events to promote and exchange knowledge between UCL and local authority partners

Helen previously managed UCL’s knowledge exchange funding. She’s also worked in UCL Public Policy, promoting engagement and interaction between UCL research activity and external stakeholders, in particular those working in public policy and in public sector. 

Before moving to UCL, Helen worked at Imperial College London where she managed the EPSRC-funded National Service for Computational Chemistry Software, supporting research groups at universities across the UK. She has a PhD in Computational Chemistry from UCL and is trained in project management (PRINCE2 practitioner).


SMEs


Kemil Thomas
Kemil Thomas

Senior Partnerships Manager (High Growth SMEs)

Tel: 020 3108 7934 (internal: 57934)
Email: kemil.thomas@ucl.ac.uk

Kemil is responsible for identifying and developing strategic partnerships between UCL researchers and external commercial partners, with a focus on high-growth SMEs.

He previously managed UCL's Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) programme and other knowledge-exchange initiatives across faculties within UCL. Before moving to UCL, he worked as a Project Manager with the University of Wales, supporting their enterprise activities. He has experience supporting Innovate UK, European-funded (ERDF, ESF) and other external-funded projects for business engagement and support.

Kemil holds a Master’s degree in Finance from Swansea University and is also trained in project management (PRINCE2 practitioner).


Joe Welch
Dr Joe Welch

Knowledge Transfer Partnership Programme Manager

Tel: 020 7679 9933 (internal: 39933)
Mobile: 07917 923689
Email: j.welch@ucl.ac.uk

Joe manages UCL’s Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) programme. The KTP scheme offers a co-funded mechanism through which academics can put their research into practice and businesses can innovate and grow. Joe works with businesses and academics to scope potential KTP projects and apply for funding from Innovate UK. He then works with academic departments to set them up and oversees them.

Contact Joe if you want to:

  • explore if your idea or project could be eligible for the KTP programme
  • apply your academic expertise in business/industry environments
  • embed new capability in your business/organisation
  • strategically develop your academic-industry partnership

Joe joined Innovation & Enterprise from UCL’s Impact team, where he was responsible for developing and supporting impact activities across the Maths & Physical Sciences and Engineering faculties. He also supported strategic institutional impacts through the Office of the Vice-Provost (Research).

Joe currently maintains his role as a Senior Research Fellow at the London Centre for Nanotechnology’s Diamond Electronics Group (UCL) one day a week. Joe has worked in the Diamond group since 2007, performing the role of Lab Manager between 2014 to 2021. Each research project Joe has worked on has been in close collaboration with industry, across a wide range of applications.

Learn more about the benefits of a KTP for company partners or UCL academics.


Rebecca Robinson
Rebecca Robinson

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships Project Coordinator

Tel: 020 3108 6625 (internal: 56625)
Email: rebecca.j.robinson@ucl.ac.uk

Rebecca manages the delivery of UCL’s Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) projects, from when they're awarded to when they close. This involves being the first point of contact for company partners, KTP Associates and UCL academics with queries about KTP projects.

Contact Rebecca if you’re:

  • a UCL academic, company partner or KTP Associate with a query about a KTP project in set-up or live phase that you’re working on at UCL
  • unsure who to contact about your KTP-related enquiry

Rebecca has ten years' international work experience in research, communication, languages and marketing. Before joining UCL, she worked at the European Union, the United Nations and the BBC.

Learn more about the benefits of a KTP for company partners or UCL academics.


Innovate UK EDGE

The Innovate UK EDGE team provides specialist innovation advice and facilitates international partnerships for high-growth SMEs, innovative startups and R&D intensive spinouts.


Garry Boyle

Innovation and Growth Specialist

Tel: 020 7911 5717
Email: g.boyle@ucl.ac.uk

Garry works with London-based innovative SMEs and spinouts, helping them realise their high-growth potential. Garry has a particular focus on identifying IP with commercial potential, as well as securing funding and investment. He also helps facilitate international partnerships to enable SMEs to expand and grow globally.

Contact Garry about:

  • finding trusted business, research or technology partners internationally 
  • accessing funding and finance 
  • making global connections  
  • improving how you manage innovation
  • collaborative commercial R&D projects in the digital health and life sciences industry
  • the Innovate2Succeed programme 

Garry holds an MA in Accountancy and Business Law from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. He also has extensive experience working with innovative spinouts, in particular in the areas of highly technical engineering and life science. He also won national awards for his startup idea at university.


Isabelle Etheridge
Isabelle Etheridge

Events and Marketing Officer

Tel: 020 7679 8196 (internal: 08196)
Email: i.etheridge@ucl.ac.uk

Isabelle oversees the events and marketing activities of the Innovate UK EDGE team. She's responsible for coordinating all aspects of events and contributes to the design and production of marketing materials and web communications.

Contact Isabelle about:

  • workshops and brokerage events organised or co-organised by the team
  • internal and external communications relating to Innovate UK EDGE and/or Enterprise Europe Network London

Jonathan Grinbaud
Jonathan Grinbaud

Innovation and Growth Specialist

Tel: 020 3108 6688 (internal: 56688)
Email: jonathan.grinbaud.15@ucl.ac.uk

Jonathan advises and supports London-based SMEs and university spinouts to enable them to grow internationally. This includes helping businesses commercialise their R&D, penetrate new markets and secure finance. He's part of the Enterprise Europe Network Intelligent Energy Sector Group.

Contact Jonathan about:

  • finding trusted business, research or technology partners internationally (in particular those in energy efficiency)
  • accessing funding and finance
  • making global connections
  • improving how you manage innovation

Before joining UCL, Jonathan worked closely with London-based SMEs as part of the Innovation Team at Newable. He also has a practical understanding of EU policy and programmes from working on the Common Agricultural Policy at the French Ministry of Agriculture, and on European judicial cooperation at Eurojust, in previous roles.

Jonathan has a Modern European Studies MA from UCL, and a French Master’s degree in European Affairs and International Relations from the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Lyon (Sciences Po Lyon).


Stefan Nardi-Hiebl
Stefan Nardi-Hiebl

Innovation and Growth Specialist

Tel: 020 3108 7937 (internal: 57937)
Email: s.nardi-hiebl@ucl.ac.uk

Stefan provides tailored advice and support to London-based SMEs, including UCL startups and spinout companies. This includes helping them access funding for innovation, write business plans and funding applications, develop and diversify products, plan new markets, and exploit and protect intellectual property.

Contact Stefan about:

  • finding trusted business, research or technology partners internationally 
  • accessing funding and finance 
  • making global connections  
  • improving how you manage innovation 

Stefan has more than a decade of experience in healthcare and life sciences in various managerial positions, from multinational enterprises and consulting to the startup sector. 
 
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from University of Applied Sciences Regensburg, Germany, a Master's degree from London School of Economics and Political Sciences, and an Executive MBA from ESMT Berlin, Germany. 


Miriam Newman-Tancredi

Innovation Analyst

Tel: 020 3108 6563 (internal: 56563)
Email: m.newman-tancredi@ucl.ac.uk

Miriam develops and supports the team’s strategy for working with startups, spinouts and London SMEs. This involves supporting the objectives of the Innovate UK consortium, leading on quality assurance and data analysis, and creating new processes for data monitoring.

Contact Miriam about:

  • sector engagement strategies of the Innovate UK EDGE team
  • project management, reporting and project outputs 

Miriam has a background working on European projects and consulting in communications for the defence sector. She holds a Master’s in European Politics specialised in security and defence from Sciences Po Strasbourg, France, an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Exeter, and an LLB in Law from the University of Southampton.


Suha Nizami

Project Officer

Tel: 020 3108 3762 (internal: 53762)
Email: suha.nizami@ucl.ac.uk

Suha carries out project management and financial activities for the Innovate UK EDGE team at UCL. She plays a major role in reporting to funders and tracking performance outputs of projects.

Contact Suha about:

  • the Innovate UK EDGE programme and its suitability for your business
  • reporting and project outputs for the Innovate UK EDGE team

Lisa Stafford
Lisa Stafford

Innovation and Growth Specialist

Email: l.stafford@ucl.ac.uk

Lisa works with London-based SMEs who seek to offer solutions to problems affecting communities in the UK and worldwide. She helps companies to refine their business plans, manage and commercialise intellectual property, and  access funding and investment. She also helps companies to identify and access new markets internationally.

Contact Lisa about:

  • finding trusted business, research or technology partners in the UK and internationally
  • accessing funding and finance
  • making global connections and finding networking opportunities
  • improving how you manage innovation
  • identifying sector specific opportunities to develop your business
  • accessing and doing business in new markets

Lisa’s background is in UK foreign direct investment. She’s worked in the Investment Services Team at the Department for International Trade and at London's International Promotion Agency, London & Partners. Here she helped international companies make a business case to expand to the UK, identify market opportunities, and establish their operations.

Lisa holds a Bachelor's degree in International Business with French from Queens University Belfast and a professional diploma in marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.