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Joining forces with the University of Salford and the North of England Robotics Innovation Centre, Match, the GM Business Growth Hub’s free business connector network, hosted an innovation themed networking event on 25th April 2024 at the Old Fire Station in Salford. Taking the opportunity, The North of England Robotic Innovation Centre (NERIC) showcased Spot the robotic dog for the first time, dancing with guests during the event. 

Established in July 2023, NERIC served as a hub for small and medium-sized enterprises interested in designing, testing and validating innovative technologies in the rapidly growing field of robotics and automation. Stephanie West, Business Development Manager of NERIC, stated that participating in events organised by BGH will help the centre expand its network and connect with the local business community, thereby fostering more collaboration in the future. 

During the event, Karen Dudley, Commercialisation Specialist, GM Business Growth Hub, and Richard Magennis, Business Engagement Manager, University of Salford, highlighted the significance for businesses in Greater Manchester to leverage the knowledge base of universities to drive innovation and commercialisation. 

With the event focusing on innovation, Karen Dudley highlighted the Innovation Vouchers program in her presentation, which is a matching fund program that awards up to £3,000 to £5,000 through the BGH with the university as the academic partner. The program aims to help businesses gain access to the consultancy services of both organisations to de-risk investments, explore new ideas or prove concepts, and set up a solid foundation for larger R&D projects. 

“Today’s event was a huge success in bringing together two distinct networks- one from the University and the other from the GM Business Growth Hub,” stated Richard Magennis, the Business Engagement Manager of the University of Salford.  

He added, “One of the major obstacles for businesses to collaborate with the university is that they are unaware of how to approach and work with us. However, the GM Business Growth Hub has an extensive network of businesses in the region. Therefore, it was natural for us to work together and spread our message to the business community.” 

“It was great to attend this networking event as it provided a chance for like-minded individuals to come together,” said Dixon, one of the attendees. “It provided a good platform for the exchange of thoughts on various business-related topics and networking opportunities.” 

This great event was brought together by Josh Harris, Business Development Executive of GM Business Growth Hub, and his ‘Matchmaker’ colleagues from across business, as part of our Match event series. He said, “Our BGH Match events are a fantastic platform for businesses and individuals in Greater Manchester to connect and discuss topics with shared concern and learn about the business support available. Innovation and commercialisation are definitely the topics on everyone’s mind, and it is so natural to bring in our partners from the universities, providing opportunities for future collaboration.” 

Get in touch with us and see how our advisors can help you connect with those brilliant minds in universities who can help you realise your concept and bring your business to the next level. Whether your business is big or small or at whatever stage in your business journey, we will surround you with experts and support programs designed to help you achieve more.   

GM Business Growth Hub - Greater Manchester's business support organisation | GM Business Growth Hub 

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