Business News

Report highlights NovaUCD’s global economic impact

By Business & Finance
25 October 2013

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD, today officially launched a new report which highlights the economic impact of NovaUCD, the Centre for New Ventures and Entrepreneurs, in Ireland and internationally.

The report was published to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the official opening of NovaUCD, which is managed by the Office of the Vice-President for Innovation, at University College Dublin.

At NovaUCD new high-tech and knowledge-intensive start-up companies are nurtured and supported to enable them to develop, grow and create jobs. UCD’s technology transfer team, which is responsible for the commercialisation of the intellectual property emerging from UCD’s world-class research programmes, is also based at NovaUCD.

The new report highlights that NovaUCD’s start-up and commercialisation activities, over the past decade, currently support a total of 1,341 jobs (direct and indirect) worldwide, of which 1,056 are based in Ireland. In addition, NovaUCD’s activities support an annual contribution of €47.7mn Gross Value Added (GVA) to the worldwide economy, of which €36.6mn GVA is contributed to the Irish economy.

The report concludes that by 2016 entrepreneurial and commercialisation activities at NovaUCD will be supporting a total of 2,527 jobs (direct and indirect), of which 1,934 will be in Ireland, and will be contributing an annual economic impact of €87.7mn GVA worldwide, of which €66.1mn GVA will be contributed to the Irish economy.

Launching the report at NovaUCD, Richard Bruton TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation said: “A key part of the Government’s plan for jobs and growth is ensuring that we derive more benefit, in terms of commercial outcomes and jobs, from the State’s investment in science and technology – turning good ideas into good jobs. To deliver this we are making a series of changes, including the research prioritisation exercise and the establishment of a central technology transfer office to act as a “one stop shop” for the commercialisation of research. Today’s report showing that over 1300 jobs have been created as a result of NovaUCD’s activities, illustrates clearly what can be achieved in this area. I commend them on all their work and wish them every success for the future.”

Since 2003, UCD has supported 126 companies through its incubation services at NovaUCD and 30 new UCD spinout companies have been incorporated during the last 10 years.

In 2013 the combined annual turnover of the companies supported at NovaUCD, which have raised €91mn in equity funding to date, amounted to €71.2mn and they collectively employ 599 people directly, 489 of whom are based in Ireland. These companies expect to create 851 new jobs over the next three years, 630 of whom will be based in Ireland.

Speaking at the report launch Professor Peter Clinch, UCD vice-president for innovation said: “They say a journey of a thousand miles starts with a small step; at NovaUCD we support and develop high-tech and knowledge-intensive companies at the start-up phase of development in a world-class incubation facility. At NovaUCD we provide comprehensive support programmes and a peer-support system that has nurtured an enthusiastic and dynamic community of talented entrepreneurs and companies which have gone on to achieve considerable success on the global stage.” He added: “The impact of NovaUCD has been far greater than could have been imagined 10 years ago when it officially opened and I have no doubt that an exciting future lies ahead for NovaUCD.”

During the last 10 years the income generated from UCD’s commercialisation activities at NovaUCD amounted to €5.2mn. Since 2003 445 inventions have been disclosed by UCD researchers to UCD’s technology transfer team and 318 patent applications have been filed by UCD.

In addition 81 licensing deals have been concluded with a range of indigenous and international businesses. As a direct result of entering into licensing agreements with UCD, businesses have been able to increase their turnover in Ireland by an average of €3.6mn annually and internationally by €5.8mn.

Kevin Cooney, managing director, Xilinx EMEA and Corporate CIO, said: “It takes time to create an embedded infrastructure to support an entrepreneurial culture. I believe that NovaUCD has successfully done this and is now moving to the next level under its current leadership. NovaUCD is a very enabling environment and if you look at the number of patents filed, for example, it is hugely encouraging as it reflects the level of innovation taking place at UCD and the potential for great business opportunities.”

He added: “UCD has shown both vision in establishing NovaUCD and a very strong commitment to making it work. The centre is going to go from strength to strength and I think it is going be even more successful in its next decade. Ultimately, the more successful NovaUCD is, the better it will be for Ireland Inc.”

Over 45 innovative new ventures are currently based at NovaUCD. Many of these are spinout companies, such as Equinome, HeyStaks and Oncomark, which are commercialising research specifically undertaken at UCD. The remaining are spin-in companies, such as Biosensia, Enbio and Tethras, which located to NovaUCD in order to interact more closely with the University.

Frank Ryan, CEO, Enterprise Ireland said: “The results of the NovaUCD economic impact survey are very positive and demonstrate that NovaUCD is a key component of Ireland’s technology transfer system and is an example of what we excel at here in Ireland.”

He added: “From Enterprise Ireland’s point of view our objective is jobs and increased exports and we welcome being involved in leading-edge applied science that can be commercialised. This is key for Enterprise Ireland and we believe an ecosystem that includes NovaUCD is very attractive and advantageous for the country.”

The impact of NovaUCD’s activities are based on independent economic analysis of NovaUCD’s entrepreneurial and commercialisation activities from 2003 to 2013 carried out by BiGGAR Economics.

These results are included in a publication launched today entitled NovaUCD – Celebrating 10 Years of Entrepreneurial Success 2003-2013.