Kent-based Discovery Park has signed a two-year agreement with The Innovation Forum to help elevate start-ups in the life sciences industry and open up networks between innovators and the wider science community.

The Innovation Forum is a global, non-profit network of entrepreneurial scientists and an accelerator for healthcare ventures, started in Cambridge more than eight years ago.

It will assist Discovery Park in attracting young scientists, building collaborative partnerships with universities, and delivering workshops and training programmes to help move start-ups to the next level.

Dr Martino Picardo, Chair of Discovery Park, said: “We have a shared vision to connect innovators, industry and investors which will strengthen Kent’s life science economy. The Innovation Forum will help to further stimulate the growth of innovative young companies that are already finding the facilities and support they need at Discovery Park.

“It will also offer them the chance to be part of the science and entrepreneurial community, not just here, but internationally.”

Discovery Park and The Innovation Forum will work together on building stakeholder value to spin-outs and start-ups and providing mentorship for SMEs.

Iwan Roberts, CEO, The Innovation Forum, said: “The Innovation Forum is proud to announce its partnership with Discovery Park.

“As a grassroots network of 10,000 scientific entrepreneurs, the Innovation Forum believes in collaborating strongly with regional hubs of excellence and connecting them with the wider ecosystem of like-minded innovators building technologies and start-ups that will shape the future of our health.

“We see Discovery Park as a key partner in the UK which combines a strong heritage with a forward-thinking attitude looking at supporting great talent with the skills development and resources they need. We hope to support innovators in the Kent ecosystem along with Discovery Park to support even more healthcare ventures in the region and provide them with the networking and mentoring opportunities to take their ideas to the next level.”

More than 160 companies are based at Discovery Park, which offers high quality laboratory, office and manufacturing facilities, the space and support to expand, access to local finance, and a strong local scientific talent pool. For further information on the companies based on the site, which has been identified as one of six prestigious UK Life Sciences Opportunity Zones in the country, visit: www.discovery

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