Innovation takes to the road


The Mobile Pop-up Innovation Centre is out on the road each Thursday looking to engage with the Cornish business community.

Funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Cornwall Council, the Mobile Pop-up Innovation Centre forms part of the business outreach and support services offered by Acceleration Through Innovation 2 (ATI2), a £3.4 million business support programme led by the University of Plymouth.

Paul Miles Rogers, ATI2 Pop-up Innovation Centre coordinator and driver of the Mobile Pop-Up, explained: “Every week I shall be taking the van to a town or industrial estate, and sometimes to a business networking event, in order to speak to businesses about how ATI2 can help drive innovation and growth.

“This assistance can take many forms, whether it’s business innovation advice, market research support or access to specialist consultants and academic resources via the University of Plymouth.

“What’s more, if the business has a challenge or aspiration which doesn’t fit within ATI2’s suite of services, then we can also connect them to another support partner who could help, such as Access to Finance or the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth and Skills Hub.”

Last week (Oct 7), the Mobile Pop-Up visited the Cornwall Business Show in Wadebridge to connect with businesses and shall be in Roche on October 21 for the Your Partnerships networking event at the Victoria Inn.

Bude will also see the Mobile Pop-Up roll up on October 28, when it is set to visit the Neetside Community Centre to offer a business support clinic alongside eHealth Productivity and Innovation in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly (EPIC), a sister project led by the University of Plymouth and funded by ERDF.

ATI2 supports small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who are seeking to commercialise new opportunities which can lead to increased growth, productivity and sustainable change. To date, the project has engaged over 320 businesses, registered 135 small to medium-sized enterprises onto the programme and awarded 29 grants to support innovation projects with a total project value of £769,856.

Following the success of its static Pop-Up Innovation Centres (which is currently located in Hayle for businesses to use), its new Mobile Pop-Up facility aims to raise awareness of the various business support providers and will tour the county to seek out SMEs residing within harder to reach areas of Cornwall.