Members of Nexus, the University of Leeds’ innovation hub, hope to create 350 jobs over the next year

Dr Martin StowDr Martin Stow
Dr Martin Stow
Members of Nexus, the University of Leeds’ innovation hub, hope to create 350 jobs over the next year as they help the region’s economy bounce back from the pandemic.

A new report - ‘We Are One: Building the Nexus Community’ - reveals that, in the year since it opened, 125 skilled jobs have been created at Nexus and hub members have developed 37 products and services.

Based inside a £40m building on the university campus, Nexus includes office and lab space, along with meeting facilities.

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The members of Nexus have secured £10.8 million in grant funding and invested £3.5 million in research and development over the last year.

Dr Martin Stow, Nexus Director, said: “Our vision is for the University of Leeds and Nexus to become an even stronger powerhouse for innovation, recognised nationally and internationally as a benchmark for how universities should collaborate with businesses to deliver societal and economic impact.”

Nexus is home to around 35 high growth businesses working with the university on initiatives that are helping to tackle some of society’s biggest challenges. They include the artificial intelligence innovator Scaled Insights, which has played a major role in compiling a survey analysing how public behaviour has changed in response to the pandemic.

The project is providing data to public health services, charities and Government and is being led by Dr Stuart Flint, Associate Professor of Psychology at the University and Scaled Insights’ company president.

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The survey findings have been presented to West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA).

The Indian nanotechnology specialist, MagGenome Pvt Ltd, has also joined Nexus as its first community member business.

MagGenome, which has a team of 40 senior microbiologists and biotechnologists based in Tamil Nadu in India, signed up as a Nexus community member as part of its plans to expand its magnetic nanoparticles development business internationally.

Community membership was launched by Nexus, in order to attract businesses which might not need physical space in the Nexus building, but could still benefit from access to the skills and talent based at the university and support for their development.

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Dr Stow, said: “We are extremely proud that MagGenome has chosen Nexus as its base for the expansion of its business across the UK and internationally.

“Our community membership option was a perfect solution for the business, giving them seamless access to the brilliant academics and researchers at the University of Leeds, from their base in India. Many other businesses, both in the UK and overseas, are contacting us to discuss that option.”

Dr Stow said the innovation hub is bringing highly skilled technical jobs to Leeds.

He added: “The economic benefits we have seen speak for themselves.”

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Dr Stow continued: “Investment in research and development has been identified as crucial for future growth and our member businesses are leading the way – and bucking the declining regional trend – with vital investment in R&D to bring about transformative change across the healthcare, data, engineering and environment sectors.”

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