New centre will help North-East to access £1000bn market

CPI has secured funding for a new innovation centre in the North-East

CPI has secured funding for a new innovation centre in the North-East

First published in Business News

A £14m research centre to develop new ways of making household products is being established in the North-East.

An investment of £7.4m from the local growth fund is being made to The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) to develop an innovation hub focused on the development of complex formulated products, a market worth an estimated £1000bn.

The investment will be matched with £7m from industry.

Complex formulated products are found in a huge variety of everyday items including cosmetic creams, gels, detergents processed foods, paints and adhesives.

The new centre, the only one of its kind on this scale in the UK, will be located at NETPark near Sedgefield, in County Durham.

It will provide facilities and expertise to help companies develop new formulated products before they are introduced to the market .

The centre is expected to be used by major blue chip business across the region operating in the pharmaceuticals, paints and cosmetics industries, including Glaxosmithkline, AkzoNobel and Proctor & Gamble, as well as small firms within the supply chain for these industries.

Initially the centre will create about 20 high calibre jobs. Indirectly it's estimated the project will generate about 100 jobs once it is fully operation around 2015/16.

It follows confirmation in March that CPI will establish a research centre at NETPark for firms to work on wonder material graphene.

NETPark itself was also a major winner from the growth fund deals announced by the Government on Monday. The County Durham technology park won £8m to support its expansion plans.

The growth fund bids formed part of the North East LEP’s Strategic Economic Plan, ‘More and Better Jobs’, which drew on the evidence in the North East Independent Economic Review.

Roy Sandbach, the LEP'S innovation champion, said: "There is a growing global market in formulated products, estimated at £1000bn, in which the North-East has genuine strengths in both its business base and research capability.

"This new centre will provide a tremendous opportunity for the region to play a leading role in this marketplace. It will be a key asset for the UK as a whole, creating new high level innovation-centric jobs, acting as a catalyst for skills development and further establishing the North-East as a dynamic, open innovation region intent on securing inward innovation engagement from around the world”.

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