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NanoKTN Brokerage and Support Services Secure Over £82m in Projects

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The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network has announced that its support and guidance has helped the UK nanotechnology industry in over 70 individual actions securing over £82m in projects over the last six years of its existence.

Nanotechnology is one of the key emerging technologies which is providing wealth opportunities for the future of the UK. Creating the right partnerships and collaborations is vital for completing any supply and partnership gaps in the UK supply chain, and the NanoKTN has been actively working with its 3,800+ members to identify suitable partnerships for collaborative work for the further commercialization of nanotechnology products and services.

Of the £82m secured for the community, the NanoKTN has delivered £32m in 31 projects for research and development by UK organizations, brokering direct introductions for £11m of these projects via its events, and added support to the remaining £21m. Monies have been secured from a variety of sources including the UK Government, European Commission funds and also private awards.

The NanoKTN has delivered a further £20m to the UK nanotechnology community in the form of commercial sales, establishment of new university facilities, collaborations and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships. There have also been 10 international missions and the co-delivery of special interest groups (SiGs) such as the Energy Harvesting and the Surface Engineering Special Interest Groups with the Electronics, Sensors and Photonics KTN and the Materials KTN. The NanoKTN has also been instrumental in the establishment of a new £9m battery development centre at the Warwick Manufacturing Group and supported the NEXUS analytical facility at Newcastle University.

There have been many recent examples of UK SMEs raising money through IPOs, private equity fund raising and through acquisition by larger organizations in the nanotechnology sector, especially in the last quarter of 2013.

The NanoKTN has encouraged these companies to the value of £30m over the 6 years through many events and personal interactions.

Recent examples of companies helped in this area by the NanoKTN include the sale of Nanosight for £15m to Malvern Instruments Ltd and the floatation of Applied Graphene Materials onto the AIM market for over £10m.

Dr Alec Reader, Director of the NanoKTN comments, “One of the major outputs from recent government funding in the nanotechnology sector in the last 10 to 15 years is the creation of a vibrant self-sustaining SME community. The UK has a wealth of academic knowledge and industrial expertise in nanotechnology and by bringing these organizations together to collaborate on projects, the NanoKTN has provided viable commercial opportunities for the UK.”

“We are also seeing significant interest in graphene as an important material and enabling technology for future UK wealth from many companies across disparate industrial sectors, from electronics, to energy, to transport, to healthcare. With the recent announcement of the Horizon 2020 framework programme - the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years (2014 to 2020) - we hope to see more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the science base to commercialization, to further drive economic growth.”