Yorkshire-based tech start-up In-Part has expanded overseas after securing £300K investment from Mercia Technologies.
The latest success for the company, that establishes commercial collaborations between researchers and industry professionals, is its launch into the U.S. market – with more than 20 university teams now using their system, including MIT, Stanford, Cornell and Columbia University.
Founded by entrepreneurs Patrick Speedie and Dr Robin Knight, and having grown rapidly since it was established in 2014, IN-PART operates out of the Sheffield Innovation Centre – a city centre facility owned by Tata Steel subsidiary UK Steel Enterprise.
The company now employs 15, working with a total of 90 universities and more than 2,500 companies investing in the latest innovations. It has recently embarked on another recruitment campaign in a bid to meet growing demand from new and existing clients.
Its global expansion has seen the company begin work with educational institutions based in the USA, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, France, Austria, the Netherlands and Ireland, with a satellite office now being set up in Canada.
Patrick Speedie, IN-PART Founder and Sheffield University graduate, said: “IN-PART is a platform that enables universities to distribute creative and potentially ground-breaking early-stage ideas and technologies directly to relevant industry contacts who have the ability, funds and resources, to collaborate and build upon them.
“Ultimately, our aim is to accelerate new technology assessment whilst also generating detailed impact reports for universities, providing industry feedback and quantifying commercial interest in their technology.
“Being based in the Innovation Centre has helped us reach this stage of the business in a number of ways – not least as we are ideally placed to tap into the talent that comes out of the two local universities year-on-year, but also because of the great facilities and competitive rates.”
Allan Wood, UK Steel Enterprise Regional Executive and Innovation Centre Manager, said: “IN-PART is a unique organisation that is helping to bridge the gap between academics and the commercial market, so it is fitting that they chose to base themselves at the Innovation Centre in Sheffield.
“Their expansion on a global level is indicative of the ground-breaking services that they facilitate the transfer of knowledge across the university–industry border.
“We’re absolutely delighted to be a part of the team’s journey as the business continues to progress.”
The UK Steel Enterprise Innovation Centre provides high quality serviced office space and workshops to rent to support the needs of new or growing businesses. Complete with 24/7 access, broadband, on- site car parking, meeting rooms, serviced reception, photo copy and postal services.