QMYOU Alumni Magazine Issue 76 - Page 21

A MAJOR PART OF the new facility is the Business Gateway office, run by East Lothian Council, but housed within the University. This is the first time in Scotland that a Business Gateway has been incorporated into a university campus. Scottish entrepreneur and QMU’s Chancellor, Sir Tom Farmer, officially opened the Business Gateway in the autumn. Cllr. John McMillan, East Lothian Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development, who spoke at the launch, said: “The new Business Gateway at QMU continues the work of an existing and valued service which provides practical information and help for businesses both new and established. This advice is wide ranging. It can include helping individuals find their way through tax and regulation, and advice on how best to access public sector services needed to help establish or grow their business. The Council is funding the establishment of the Business Gateway at QMU which we believe strongly supports and complements the aims of the Business Innovation Zone.” Professor Petra Wend, QMU Principal, said: “The UK needs to create a stronger culture of enterprise. In the current climate, it’s no longer realistic for all graduates to think they can walk straight into well-paid graduate positions – many of these jobs are just not there at the moment – so graduates need to be inventive and have the ability to create their own careers. The creation of the Zone and the embedding of entrepreneurship into our courses is encouraging students to view business and entrepreneurship as a viable graduate career option.” The launch of the new Business Innovation Zone signals the University’s increasing push to step up its engagement with If you’re interested in knowing more about the Business Innovation Zone contact Miriam Smith, E: MSmith3@qmu ac.uk T: 0131 474 0000. small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Aside from the Business Gateway, the Zone incorporates new business incubation space, offering space and facilities to small business start-ups and QMU graduates who are setting up their own businesses. QMU graduates Michael Grant and Agata Jagodzinska are developing their fledging video production business, Raw Film Productions. Michael said: “I was surprised at just how helpful and useful Business Gateway has been. I went in with a small query about web optimisation training. By the time I’d left, the adviser had not only set me up with training, but has provided me with a whole range of other ideas to help further develop our business. He also provided excellent business leads which I am now following up.” Roots Soda, a newly developing natural drinks business, is based in QMU’s new incubation space. Mark Pool, Roots Soda Director, said: “It’s important that new enterprises get as much help and support in the early days as possible. We wanted to start a business for some time but the prospect can be daunting. You know that you can’t do it all yourself and since the start everyone at QMU has been really supportive of what we are doing. Just knowing that we have them behind us is a real boost.” With an academic flagship in Sustainable Business, the development of the Business Innovation Zone exemplifies QMU’s ambition to serve society by growing local business and expanding graduate career opportunities. ❒ It’s all a buzz at BIZ Despite only opening in September 2012, there are already a number of exciting developments within BIZ. QMU’s graduate start-up company Rawfilm Productions has been commissioned by our SME partner Advanced Microwave Technology (AMT) to produce a promotional film. AMT is also collaborating with QMU researchers and another BIZ tenant, Roots Soda on the pasteurisation of carbonated drinks.    Have your next meeting in a perfect setting Looking for the perfect venue for your next meeting or event? Look no further than QMU’s new dedicated meeting and conference facility. In addition to pre-existing meeting rooms, we now have a new dedicated meeting space which: • can accommodate up to 60 people; • is equipped with high-tech facilities – AV, plasma screens, interactive smart board and computer; • comes with in-house technical support; • can include private break-off space with a grand piano for social gatherings; • overlooks our water feature and landscaped grounds and; • offers easy access to the outside decking area. So why not try our award winning sustainable campus for your next event? Spaces for larger scale events also available. Discuss your space and catering needs with Sarah Whigham: T: 0131 474 0000 (say ‘EVENTS’) or E swhigham@qmu.ac.uk; www.qmu.ac.uk QMYOU / Commercial Support 21