SETsquared named best business incubator in the world


The incubator has won top accolades for its contribution to developing the next generation of UK tech entrepreneurs.

SETsquared, a partnership between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, has been named the best business incubator in the world by UBI Global at the World Incubation Summit in Toronto, Canada.

The national university business incubator, with offices in Bristol’s Engine Shed, nurtures technology-based businesses throughout their lifecycle from idea through to investment and scale-up.

The SETsquared Centre, which is home to around 85 innovative ventures, has created more than 1,300 jobs since its launch in 2012.

In 2017, its members raised more than £119m of investment and generated over £75m in revenue between them.

SETsquared offers entrepreneur training programmes and provides access to a network of mentors, alumni, investors, corporate partners and knowledge base of the five universities.

It has helped more than 2,500 UK high-tech start-ups raise £1.5bn of investment and contributed over £3.8bn to the UK economy.

In 2017, more than 880 entrepreneurs participated in SETsquared programmes and it incubated 381 companies, which raised £218m investment.

Bristol-based Ultrahaptics is one of the companies to have benefitted from the SETsquared partnership.

Founded by University of Bristol alumnus Tom Carter during his PhD studies, Ultrahaptics has developed a technology that uses ultrasound to project invisible buttons and dials that people can feel.

Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark said: “The SETsquared partnership has not only helped nurture and grow British technology businesses, but it has also contributed nearly £4bn to the UK economy, which is an incredible achievement.

“Being recognised as one of the world’s leading business incubators is fantastic news and testament to the hard work and dedication of the team at SETsquared and the universities they work with.

“Through our modern Industrial Strategy, we’re calling on businesses to invest in the latest technology trends, and through our Sector Deals and Grand Challenges, we want the UK to be at the forefront of the technology revolution and make Britain fit for the future.”

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