2023 has roared into action across all four CCR strategic goal areas, with the Cardiff Medicentre innovation hub celebrating its 30th birthday, Principality unveiling a £500,000 Future Generations Fund, Chwarae Teg opening doors for women in tech through the New Futures pilot, and the Cyber Resilience Centre for Wales welcoming its 1000th SME member …
Cardiff Medicentre celebrates 30 years of innovation
A pioneering biotech and medtech innovation hub in the Welsh capital has reached a milestone fourth decade, celebrating 30 years of helping develop some of the UK’s most exciting businesses.
Founded in the early 1990s, Cardiff Medicentre was the first business incubator of its kind in the UK – and now operates as a joint venture between Cardiff University and Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, providing everything from low-cost leasing through to high-spec laboratories, for start-ups and established life science businesses.
Over the past three decades, this remarkable innovation hub has nurtured 55 businesses, many of which have gone on to achieve significant success – with alumni including Intelligent Ultrasound, the AIM-listed AI-based ultrasound software and simulation company; Alesi Surgical, founders of Ultravision – the world’s first system for eliminating surgical smoke without the need for gas exchange; and Cellesce, inventors of a unique process for expanding human-derived normal and cancer organoids for drug discovery.
With MedTech being one of CCR’s five priority sectors, we applaud the 30th anniversary of a home of innovation that has produced such startling startups, spinouts and scaleups, providing the environment and hands-on support to get innovation off the ground and into commercialisation.
Principality unveils £500,000 Future Generations Fund
Principality Building Society has launched its second Future Generations Fund, to help secure the future lives of young people across CCR and the rest of Wales.
The £500,000 fund provides grants of between £5,000 and £10,000, to help ensure young people prepare for a future where they can live sustainably by building financial resilience, preparing for an ever changing world of work, protecting their mental health and developing healthy food habits.
By focusing on removing fundamental sustainability barriers faced by thousands of young people in Wales, the Principality aims to help individuals connect with better opportunities and access resources that are vital to boosting education and wellbeing – working in partnership with Community Foundation Wales to create maximum impact ‘on the ground’, across the country.
The fund represents Principality’s most significant investment in the future of local communities – and is open to applications until Wednesday 8 February, via the Community Foundation Wales website.
Chwarae Teg’s ‘New Futures’ pilot opens the door for women in tech
Chwarae Teg is encouraging women across South Wales to train for a career in tech, through the New Futures programme that provides technical training, career development support and opportunities to meet employers – completely free of charge.
The award-winning gender equality charity is working with FinTech Wales in partnership with Code First Girls and the Open University, to address the under-representation of women in tech and digital roles – with a pioneering pilot being rolled-out across Bridgend, Cardiff, Swansea and the Vale of Glamorgan.
Women need no major qualifications to take part, just an enthusiasm to train for a career in technology – with applications particularly encouraged from those currently working in retail, hospitality and care; or from females who are aged over 54, or from underrepresented groups such as women from an ethnic minority background.
Support can be provided with transport and childcare costs, for a programme that is being led by the Learning and Work Institute, and funded by the Covid-19 Support Fund – with those people interested able to find out more and register here.
Cyber Resilience Centre for Wales welcomes 1000th member
The Cyber Resilience Centre for Wales (WCRC) celebrated welcoming its 1000th member in January – an impressive statistic for the Bridgend-based enterprise that was established in 2020.
The WCRC offers its membership a range of cyber security support services and guidance, ensuring that business owners and their employees have the right processes in place to protect their enterprise – including the knowledge to recognise a targeted threat.
With 1000 members now enjoying enhanced protection, the WCRC published its state-of-cybercrime views on the main factors affecting the digital security for small to medium sized enterprises:
- People pose the biggest risk to business when it comes to cybercrime, with employees identified as the number one weakest link and primary target for criminals.
- Phishing attacks, where the attacker uses a form of communication such as an email, are increasing in number and sophistication – including the emergence of Welsh language phishing emails, as cybercriminals try their best to infiltrate businesses in our Region.
- Ransomware remains a significant threat, with attackers increasingly stealing the data and encrypting it, to increase pressure for payment of the ransom.
On a positive note, the WCRC reports that organisations are increasingly recognising the importance of supply chain cyber security, understanding that attacks through supply chains are becoming more frequent.
To find out more about the latest news in Innovation, Sustainability, Inclusivity and Connectivity across South East Wales, go to: www.cardiffcapitalregion.wales