Canterbury Innovation Centre, a hub in which technology-rich companies can establish, diversifying the business base in East Kent, opened yesterday.
The centre, funded by £7.3m from the South East England Development Agency (SEEDA), aims to commect high growth, high tech businesses with academic expertise to help drive innovation and entrepreneurship.
It is expected to create 2,000 jobs and support 800 new businesses in the future.
The new hub, 25,000sqft (2,300sqm) of office, studio and workshop space designed to support business start-ups, is managed by leading business centre specialist, Basepoint.
Commenting on the launch of the centre, Professor Julia Goodfellow, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kent, said: “The Innovation Centre is an integral part of the University’s strategy to support the local economy and to encourage innovation and enterprise, making the region more attractive for graduates to stay and work locally”.
The hub has opened with over a third of space already let to local businesses. As stated by Jo Clark, Basepoint’s Centre Manager, “Within the first month of opening, 35 out of the 85 units available have already been occupied, a huge achievement considering the current economic climate”.