Major new collaboration to harness Dundee’s entrepreneurial spirit

A pioneering alliance between the University of Dundee and Entrepreneurial Scotland (ES) will help to forge Scotland’s next generation of business leaders.

The three-year collaboration between the two institutions was signed at the University’s Centre of Entrepreneurship on Wednesday, where a full-time member of Entrepreneurial Scotland staff will now be based.

The tie-up will build on both organisations’ wider strategies to promote start-up and spinout businesses, with the University benefitting from access to a global network of business contacts, along with training and support for the on-campus community. In turn, the move establishes a permanent presence for ES in one of the country’s most dynamic economic environments.

Professor Andrew Atherton, Principal and Vice Chancellor, said, “This collaboration with ES is an ambitious and innovative move for the University of Dundee.

“Having a full-time member of ES staff located on campus will bring our organisations closer together, allowing new businesses emerging from both the University and wider Tay Cities region to benefit from leading sector knowledge and expertise.

“Working with ES opens up new and exciting networks for the University community to access and we are confident that this relationship will help our students and staff to establish themselves as Scotland’s next generation of business leaders.”

The University and ES already share strong ties, with alumnus Chris van der Kuyl having been founding chair of the organisation until last year, while current Rector Mark Beaumont acts as an ambassador.

The agreement was formally signed at the Centre of Entrepreneurship ahead of the University’s annual Public Lecture in Entrepreneurship, hosted this year by ‘The Apprentice’ star and leading publishing figure Mike Soutar.

Sandy Kennedy, Chief Executive of ES, said, “By working together, ES and the University of Dundee can ensure that students have the confidence, support and network to achieve their entrepreneurial goals, reinforcing the city’s reputation for creativity and innovation – and helping us succeed in our mission to make Scotland the most entrepreneurial society in the world. 

“Through a combination of our existing network and the University’s 18,000 students and 3,000 staff, we have a sizeable footprint to work with individuals to make them more entrepreneurial, and support start-ups and spinouts which will contribute to the future prosperity of the Tay Cities region.”