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New business and innovation space in North Wales approved

Transforming North Wales into a low carbon centre of excellence has taken a leap forward, with approval of the outline business case (OBC) for Bangor University’s Egni Project.

The approval by the North Wales Economic Ambition Board paves the way for a groundbreaking initiative that aims to redefine business incubation, research collaboration, and low carbon innovation in the region.

The project will provide around 1,500m2 of new build business and innovation space on the M-SParc site in Gaerwen, Anglesey along with business development support for innovative start-ups within the sector.

The aim is to promote collaboration and encourage the cross-fertilisation of ideas between academia and industry, researchers and engineers, to put Bangor University, M-SParc and North Wales at the forefront of UK innovation.

The project forms part of the North Wales Growth Deal Low Carbon Energy Programme which looks to position the region as a leading location for low carbon energy. The focus is on creating new high value jobs, attracting investment into the region, as well as contributing to reaching net-zero targets.

Cllr Llinos Medi, Leader of the Isle of Anglesey County Council, and the lead member for the Low Carbon Energy Programme, said:

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“The approval of the Outline Business Case reflects our dedication to advancing low carbon innovation in North Wales. With this green light, we can now move forward confidently, knowing that Egni is on track to making a lasting impact.

“Our region’s characteristics and natural resources as well as the expertise we have developed means we are in a strong position to lead the way in this important growth sector which will create new jobs as well as reducing carbon emissions. The project aligns with our mission to enhance the region’s capabilities in research, design, and innovation in low carbon energy.”

Michael Flanagan, Chief Operating Officer at Bangor University and lead for the Egni project, added:
“We are pleased to see the Egni Project reaching this important milestone and progressing towards implementation. It is an important project which aims to address challenges faced by innovations in transitioning from laboratory concepts to commercialisation.

“In addition to targeted interventions and comprehensive business support from the team at M-SParc, we will also develop space, led by our world-leading Nuclear Futures Institute, to allow engineering scale demonstration of processes and equipment and perform cutting edge analysis of materials. Through this we hope to add to the momentum around low carbon industries here in North Wales.”

With agreement from the Board, the project can now progress with the procurement phase, which will offer opportunities to the local supply chain, and develop a full business case – the final phase in securing Growth Deal funding before implementation.

Business cases are developed for each project within the Growth Deal and each Outline Business Case covers the project planning phase and identifies options which deliver public value following detailed appraisals.

The project has already received funding from Welsh Government and the proposal also forms part of the Outline Business Case for the development of Anglesey Freeport.

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