Funding supports 1,400 jobs target
Biotechnology sector receives £11m taxpayer boost
Dame Anne Glover: ‘IBioIC is wonderfully positioned’
An £11.1 million investment in research will give a further boost to developing Scotland’s biotechnology industry.
The Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC) will receive the funding from various government bodies over the next five years.
It will support the Scottish Government’s National Plan for Biotechnology by contributing 500 jobs to a planned total of 1,400 and boosting the economy by £130m.
The Scottish Funding Council will invest £7.8m, Scottish Enterprise £2.8m and Highlands and Islands Enterprise £500,000 until 2023.
The funding was confirmed yesterday by Minister for Trade, Investment and Innovation, Ivan McKee, who said: “Today’s investment from the Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise builds on the £120m already invested in Scotland’s eight innovation centres which are already having a transformational effect on our economy.”
He said Scotland has the natural resources and infrastructure that make it the “perfect place” for industrial biotechnology to thrive, bringing significant economic benefits.
Over the next five years, IBioIC will focus on key areas including leadership, accelerating commercialisation and creating a skilled workforce. There are now over a hundred members of IBioIC, including multi-national companies, public sector organisations and newly formed micro-enterprises.
This next phase of activity will be overseen by the new chairman of the IBioIC governing board, Dame Anne Glover, a biologist with a wealth of experience in science, technology and who has championed the role of innovation in the UK economy.
She said: “Industrial biotechnology is an enabling technology, which underpins innovation in multiple sectors, and can contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the use of fossil fuels, as well as supporting sustainable production.
“IBioIC is therefore wonderfully positioned for a successful future in delivering significant value for the Scottish Government, businesses and general public. I am looking forward to working with the team and my new board colleagues in leading the vibrant IB community in Scotland.”
Roger Kilburn, CEO of IBioIC said: “Over the last five years IBioIC has helped to channel over £50m of funding into IB businesses and research projects.
“We’re delighted to welcome Dame Anne onto our governing board as we enter our ambitious second phase of five year funding, where she will help us build on our success and continue to accelerate the growth of businesses of all sizes, across multiple sectors with this disruptive technology.”