Matthew Neville

Northumbria University ranked highest in region for graduate business startups with over £95m turnover

Northumbria University, Newcastle, is the North East’s highest ranked university for graduate business startups based on estimated turnover.

According to the latest Higher Education Business and Communities Interaction (HEBCIS) survey 2020/21, turnover for Northumbria graduate startups exceeded £95.3m, placing the University in the top five nationally as well as first regionally.

It means this is the 12th consecutive year Northumbria has been in the top 10 universities across the UK for graduate startups. The University has also been in the top five nationally for 10 of these years. With a “strong” track-record of supporting graduate enterprise, this latest HEBCIS report has been welcomed by Northumbria.

Services such as Student and Graduate Enterprise provide a range of support including entrepreneurial skills training, incubation/co-working space, workshops, mentoring, and specialist advice in areas such as IP/Legal, marketing, Sales, Business Growth and Finance.

Professor Graham Wynn, pro vice-chancellor for education at Northumbria, said: “These fantastic results showcase the enterprise talent, innovation and drive of Northumbria students and graduate entrepreneurs. They also highlight Northumbria’s focus on entrepreneurial learning and support for student startup businesses.

“We provide a range of services, including mentoring from industry experts to get startups to the point of trading, and we continue to support these businesses in the early years of trading. It is not just about the number of new start-ups, but also the longevity of University support to ensure our student start-ups prosper and grow over the long term.”

Since 2003 Northumbria has supported the creation of more than 500 graduate businesses, which now employ in excess of 1,100 staff and have a combined turnover approaching £100m.

Many of these businesses are based in the North East and are said to be making a “significant contribution to the regional economy”, but they are also trading nationally and internationally. Northumbria also supports the wider startup and SME community in Tyne and Wear through the Northumbria Enterprise Business Services 2 (NEBS2) programme.

With funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the programme helps graduate enterprises and local SMEs with, for example, financial support through funding for internships.

Graham Baty added: “NEBS2 is a highly successful programme, both for offering internships and great career prospects for recent graduates, and in the support it provides local SMEs looking to recruit and grow.”

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