New recession-busting voucher scheme for innovative businesses

13 Feb 2009 12:43:00.000

PA 42/09

Businesses in the East Midlands and beyond are being offered a chance to fight the recession by linking up with experts at The University of Nottingham.


A new voucher scheme worth up to £5,000 for small or medium-sized businesses is being launched by the University’s Research Innovation Services. It’s aimed at increasing collaboration between local industry and academic researchers in the field of innovation. The ‘Business Innovation Vouchers’ will be given to companies who want to work with university staff to develop new products or processes through consultancy, service projects or research.


Successful applicants will be businesses mainly in the East Midlands who can demonstrate that they have a need or ambition which could be furthered or fulfilled by the expertise of members of staff within the University.  It is primarily aimed at companies who are developing products or services that are relevant to the interests of current University research. The scheme is being run by the University’s Technology Transfer department which has up to £75,000 worth of vouchers to give away over the next two years.

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Dr Bruce Venning, Commercial Manager of RIS Technology Transfer at the University, said: “It is vital in a recession that companies broaden their horizons and try to expand their product portfolio through high quality innovation. The vouchers will make this valuable collaboration more affordable at a time when businesses are nervous about investing in new projects.” 

The University hopes the scheme will encourage more collaboration between industry and higher education in the long term, as well as providing an immediate recession-busting boost to local businesses.  Potential applicants are encouraged to examine work of the different Faculties and Schools via the University of Nottingham website  and the Expertise Database  and

  to search for ideas for relevant collaboration.


In some cases the voucher scheme may be linked with another scheme called Ingenuity, which can add a further £2,000 to the value of the consultancy and service projects. Businesses can receive vouchers with a value up to 75% of the project costs and preference will be given to those applicants whose projects may lead to further collaborations in consultancy, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships or research ventures.

Application forms for the vouchers can be obtained from: 

Dr Bruce Venning
Research Innovation Services – Technology Transfer
The Sir Colin Campbell Building
University of Nottingham Innovation Park (UNIP)
Triumph Road
NG7 2TU  
+44 (0)115 846 7891  


  — Ends —


Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 100 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and Times Higher (THE) World University Rankings. 

More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to RAE 2008, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranks the University 7th in the UK by research power. In 27 subject areas, the University features in the UK Top Ten, with 14 of those in the Top Five.

The University provides innovative and top quality teaching, undertakes world-changing research, and attracts talented staff and students from 150 nations. Described by The Times as Britain's "only truly global university", it has invested continuously in award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. Twice since 2003 its research and teaching academics have won Nobel Prizes. The University has won the Queen's Award for Enterprise in both 2006 (International Trade) and 2007 (Innovation — School of Pharmacy), and was named ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2008.

Story credits

Dr Bruce Venning +44 (0)115 846 7891

Emma Rayner - Media Relations Manager

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 951 5793 Location: University Park

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Published Date
Thursday 9th April 2009

Media Relations - External Relations

The University of Nottingham
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telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 5798