SETsquared partnership ranked as the world’s top business incubator!!


The SETsquared partnership has been ranked as the world’s leading business incubator for its outstanding contribution to developing the next generation of UK tech entrepreneurs.  The announcement was made at the World Incubation Summit in Toronto, Canada. This confirmed SETsquared’s pre-eminence as ‘number one’ in its field, having maintained its world-leading position since 2015.  SETsquared’s ranking comes as a result of the world's most extensive benchmark study of university-linked business incubators and accelerators, conducted by UBI Global, and has recognised SETsquared as the World’s Top Business Incubator - Managed by University.  SETsquared, the enterprise partnership between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, nurtures technology-based businesses throughout their lifecycle from idea through to investment and scale-up.  With bespoke entrepreneur training programmes and unrivalled access to a network of mentors, alumni, investors, corporate partners and the knowledge base of the five universities, SETsquared has helped over 2,500 UK high-tech start-ups raise more than £1.5bn of investment and contributed over £3.8bn to the UK economy.

Last year over 880 entrepreneurs participated in SETsquared programmes and it incubated 381 companies which raised a record £218m investment – the highest ever annual investment raise from the SETsquared portfolio.

Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said: “The SETsquared partnership has not only helped nurture and grow British technology businesses, but it has also contributed nearly £4 billion to the UK economy which is an incredible achievement. Being recognised as one of the world’s leading business incubators is fantastic news and testament to the hard work and dedication of the team at SETsquared and the universities they work with.  “Through our modern Industrial Strategy, we’re calling on businesses to invest in the latest technology trends, and through our Sector Deals and Grand Challenges, we want the UK to be at the forefront of the technology revolution and make Britain fit for the future.”

Ali Amin, CEO and co-founder at UBI Global, said: “Congratulations to SETsquared for ranking as the world’s top university-managed business incubator again. The partnership’s continued success is testament to the innovation and high level of business support it offers. This has resulted in high economic impact and growth for the companies it works with.”

Caroline Fleming, head of incubation at SETsquared in Surrey, said: “We’re delighted to be acknowledged once again as a leader in the world of business incubation and it is an honour to be recognised by UBI Global in this way alongside the best performing university business incubators and accelerator programmes.  “This ranking reflects the commitment of the SETsquared teams and SETsquared Surrey, a university environment that embraces innovation and enterprise and, of course, the sheer talent and drive of the entrepreneurs and companies that we have the privilege to work with.”

One of the companies to have benefitted from the SETsquared partnership is Surrey-based Fourth State Medicine, which provides products that harness space technology for use in the medical sector.

Dr. Thomas Frame, CEO of Fourth State Medicine, said: “SETsquared provides the complete support package that any start-up in any sector could want. With access to high quality facilities, workshops and free clinics by experts on almost any subject you need, they have been absolutely pivotal in our rapid growth.”


For more information, images, or interviews contact:


Ben Walker or Stuart Hunt at Carswell Gould

T: 023 8023 8001




About SETsquared

SETsquared is a long-standing partnership between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey which specialises in growing high-tech start-ups through its incubation programme and other business acceleration services. SETsquared provides mentoring, access to investors and corporate innovators and a wide range of industry experts through its network and training programmes.

Its business incubation programme is ranked by the University Business Incubator Index as the best in the world and has helped over 2,500 high-tech start-ups to develop and raise more than a £1.5bn of investment.

Independent research carried out by Warwick Economics estimates the economic impact of SETsquared member companies to be £3.8bn to 2014, with the creation of 9,000 jobs and that these companies will go on to deliver a further £8.6bn of impact to the UK economy in the decade ahead.


About UBI Global

UBI Global is a Swedish-based data and advisory firm specializing in mapping, highlighting, and connecting the world of business incubation. Through a network of more than 500 member organizations from over 70 countries globally, UBI Global provides matchmaking, ranking, benchmarking, and research services to corporations and business incubation programs.

UBI world ranking assessed 1370 programs after which 259 from 53 countries were shortlisted for the benchmark.

The award for top university business incubator is one of only four categories to be awarded by UBI Global. SETsquared shares the top university business incubator - university managed accolade with Canadian incubator and awards’ host, DMZ.




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