Historically the University, through OUI, has supported creation of two types of business: regular startup businesses created by staff and students, and ventures based on intellectual property from the University, known as spinouts.
Spinouts are typically formed around a patentable technology, such as a potential therapeutic candidate or an engineering project. This model has been successful for turning Oxford research into reality, with over 160 spinout companies created since OUI opened its doors in 1987, 19 of which were launched in the past year.
OUI is now supplementing this spinout creation activity by offering the social enterprise option. Academics will be able to receive support for creating businesses around ideas that don’t necessarily have a clear path to a commercial return, and will have the option of creating spinout companies focused on impact. Through social enterprise, OUI now offers a business model that is adaptable, dynamic and supports all University Divisions equally.
Prior to launch of this dedicated programme, OUI had already built up a pipeline of over 25 social enterprises.
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