27 November 2023

Arrow innovation support expands across the North East

  • News

New UK Shared Prosperity funding will allow businesses to access expertise and facilities from across four leading regional universities.

Arrow, the flagship business support programme initiated by Newcastle University, is set to support more regional businesses, and give them access to expertise from four regional universities thanks to funding by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund through Durham County Council and North of Tyne Combined Authority.

Arrow, over the past five years, has played a pivotal role in supporting regional SMEs, fostering innovation by connecting them with Newcastle University’s expertise. The new partnership will expand Arrow’s footprint across the region, enabling organisations in County Durham, Newcastle, North Tyneside and Northumberland to access expertise and facilities from Durham University, Newcastle University, Northumbria University, and the University of Sunderland.

Professor Jane Robinson, Newcastle University’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor Engagement and Place, said

“We are delighted that this funding will allow us to extend and expand our successful flagship Arrow programme to help businesses innovate. Businesses will now be able to access a wider pool of researchers, expertise and facilities from across four of the North East’s universities. Innovation is key to a successful economy and over the last five years we’ve seen that Arrow helps to increase innovation activity in local businesses, creating exciting new products and services, along with high quality jobs.”

Arrow has already helped over 150 businesses with innovation support by connecting them to academic expertise and facilities through short innovation projects. The success of Arrow is exemplified through Nanovery, a cutting-edge biotech company specialising in drug delivery for cancer drugs. Arrow provided support that allowed Nanovery to test their prototype in a lab, securing subsequent funding and establishing operations in the Biosphere at Newcastle Helix.

This strategic collaboration between universities and businesses, marks a significant step towards building a more sustainable, resilient, and inclusive economy in the North East.

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025. The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills. For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-shared-prosperity-fund-prospectus/uk-shared-prosperity-fund-prospectus

The North of Tyne Combined Authority is a partnership of three local authorities: Newcastle City Council, North Tyneside Council, and Northumberland County Council and the North of Tyne Elected Mayor.