Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

Business Comment: New ideas bring hope to the region

Newcastle Science City’s chief executive Peter Arnold on how innovation can help the economy through the tough times ahead.

June has been a turbulent month for Newcastle’s economic direction. News feared by many for months – the replacement of One North East – was announced and George Osborne’s emergency Budget firmly reinforced the era of austerity we are entering, while also offering capital gain incentives to new entrepreneurs.

We face a challenge, undoubtedly, but the North East has overcome serious economic obstacles before.

Businesses based on science, technology and innovation are perhaps the region’s greatest hope for achieving the high growth needed to safeguard jobs and attract investment.

Luckily, the North East has many of the ingredients required for this growth in abundance. World class research with economic potential is conducted in our universities every day. Much of the infrastructure and spirit needed to support those businesses is readily available – and has been put in place by public sector bodies like One North East and Newcastle City Council.

Most heartening of all is the growth in the number of the optimistic, creative and commercially astute entrepreneurs who want to turn a great product or service into a successful business. In the last few months they have been contacting Newcastle Science City in increasing numbers to see what services we can offer to give their business the best chance of success in straitened economic times.

In the last three months, Newcastle Science City has helped 65 people from all walks of life further their business idea.

No one is suggesting we pin all our economic hopes on this growing class of entrepreneurs, but their increasing number, their nose for a good business idea and their commercial awareness is a ray of light.

We owe them all the support and encouragement we can give them.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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