Biotech boss says labs at The Heath Business and Technical Park are ideally placed to support new science businesses
A Biotech company is switching its operation to The Heath Business and Technical Park because the location is one of the few places in the UK, outside of universities, that has specialist laboratory facilities suitable for cutting-edge scientific research and development.
Dr Rob Rule, co-founder of Entropix, an early-stage business which develops Enzymes for the manufacture of products including pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, detergents and food, says The Heath in Runcorn is ideally placed to support start-up and expanding businesses in the science sector.
He says: There are lots of fancy new high-tech buildings on business parks around the country but outside of universities there arent too many lab spaces which have the kind of specialist facilities a biotech business such as ours needs. Of course, you can create a bespoke lab but for businesses like ours starting a lab from scratch is immensely expensive. Finding a place like The Heath with the infrastructure and technical support network already in place is massively helpful.
For the past 18 months Entropix has been located at ITAC-Bio in Sci-Tech Daresbury at Warrington but is now moving to The Heath to enable the business to expand.
Entropix was recommended by another science business which moved to The Heath last year, Liverpool ChiroChem, whose CEO Dr Paul Colbon has called on the Government to build more science parks with Heath-style facilities to meet the requirements for scientific R&D.
Dr Rule says: We are different from LCC which operates in the chemistry sector whereas we are a biotech company. However, we both need very specialist lab facilities to undertake our research. Although we dont conduct hazardous research, which The Heath is also geared up to support, we do need labs with good quality water services, ventilation, electrical access and high quality flooring.
The Heath has a pretty big client base and can afford to maintain specialist technical support services which means they can adjust lab spaces to bespoke requirements, make special components such as devices and technical instruments that we might require. This is a big help to an evolving company like ours.
Entropix is scheduled to move to The Heath in October and will be operating from the same building where Dr Rule started his career after he graduated from university and joined ICI, the UKs then biggest manufacturing company, whose chemicals HQ was located at The Heath up until 1999.
I started out as a scientist with ICI but for the past 25 years have been running science businesses. Relocating to The Heath will be going full circle and a bit like coming home, adds Dr Rule. More/2
He says: We chose The Heath as it is one of the few places that can provide the facilities we need and has a landlord who is flexible and understands our precise requirements without the pressure of us having to enter into a long-term lease. We have also had absolutely fantastic support from Lesley Banks (The Heaths Sales and Marketing Manager) who has been so responsive, quick and helpful, nothing is too much trouble. Shes been absolutely brilliant.
Entropixs move to The Heath also highlights a commission policy that the Parks owners SOG Ltd has in place to reward residents for introducing new clients.
Says Lesley Banks: The many satisfied resident businesses we have on site are our best form of advertisement. We have put a lucrative commission structure in place to benefit our residents for introducing new customers to us.
About The Heath
The Heath Business and Technical Park is a phenomenal regeneration success story. Formed in 2000, its owner and operator, SOG Ltd, has transformed a once single occupancy corporate facility into a thriving independent business park. The Heath now provides office and laboratory accommodation for more than 120 individual organisations, ranging from business services and IT specialists to those at the cutting edge of science, research and advanced manufacturing. Around 2,000 people are employed at the site. For further information, telephone 01928 515988 or visit www.theheath.com
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PAUL SMITH ASSOCIATES
13th September 2023