Business competition kicks off across East Midlands to celebrate 30th anniversary

Harborough Innovation

A search for “business stars” of the future has been launched across region by a network of five innovation centres.

The Scale-up Stars of the Future competition has been organised by Oxford Innovation, the company managing the Worksop Turbine Innovation Centre, in Shireoaks, Worksop, the Mansfield i-Centre, at the Oakham Business Park, Hamilton Way, Mansfield, the Newark Beacon Innovation Centre in Cafferata Way, Newark, the Harborough Innovation Centre at Airfield Business Park, Leicester Road, Market Harborough, and the Scott Bader Innovation Centre in High Street, Wollaston, Northamptonshire, to mark their 30th anniversary of supporting ambitious businesses across the UK.

The nationwide competition has been created to identify the next generation of high-growth businesses. The winners can choose a tailored package in-line with their requirements and what support is needed. The unique offering is worth up to £10,000 and will include, but is not limited to, private, shared, lab, virtual or workspace up to the value of £5,000, professional business coaching, which will be delivered locally by specialist business advisers who are part of the Oxford Innovation network, and the opportunity to pitch to investors. Any SME registered in the county is eligible to apply no matter what stage they are at.

Tom Hanney, Regional Manager at Oxford Innovation, said: “There are a number of exciting small businesses across the county with growth potential and this is a fantastic opportunity for home-grown talent to show case their entrepreneurial flair. I’d strongly urge people who are looking to scale-up their business to enter to benefit from professional support and Oxford Innovation’s 30 years of supporting business growth.”

Oxford Innovation has helped over 10,000 SMEs to become sustainable businesses since renowned entrepreneurs, Martin and Audrey Wood, founded the company in 1987. The husband and wife team also co-founded Oxford Instruments and The Oxford Trust.

According to a report* from innovation foundation, NESTA, just six per cent of high growth companies generated over half of the UK’s employment growth.

To enter the Scale-up Stars of the Future competition, businesses are required to complete an online application form and submit a short three-minute video summarising the business, innovation, growth plans and how you could benefit from Oxford Innovation’s support. The deadline for entry is 1st September 2017. To enter or find out more, visit