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artist illustration of proposed offices on LUSEP

Major deal sealed with tech giant

Innovative plans to create hundreds of jobs, and generate £1.6million for front-line County Council services have been unveiled by the Secretary of State for Communities the Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, during a visit to the Midlands today (Thursday).

Leading software company, The Access Group, will be expanding its headquarters and moving into a new 100,000 sq. ft. office on the Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP).

The announcement was made jointly in Loughborough by the Midlands Engine Ministerial Champion Rt. Hon. James Brokenshire MP, Leicestershire County Council and Loughborough University.

Investment in the new office space by Leicestershire County Council will see the creation of over 500 new jobs and £1.6m a year for vital front line county council services. It is believed to be the largest, single-occupier office deal in the county this century.

The Access Group has 15,000 customers and develops a range of business software for clients including Leicester City Football Club, Cineworld, Itsu, Burts Crisps and Domino’s Pizza.

The venture has been made possible thanks to a pioneering partnership between Leicestershire County Council and Loughborough University.

Secretary of State for Communities and Midlands Engine Champion, the Rt. Hon. James Brokenshire MP said: "Investment by Leicestershire County Council in the Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park underlines the strength of the region as a great place to do business as well as driving growth and innovation.

"I'm delighted The Access Group has chosen to expand its headquarters in Loughborough, supporting the creation of jobs and providing a boost for the local economy."

Leicestershire County Council deputy leader, Byron Rhodes, said: “This is a real boon for our local economy, and I’m delighted we’ve secured this forward-thinking deal.

“It cements Loughborough’s growing global reputation as a business and innovation centre, and shows that Leicestershire is truly open for business.

“By investing in property, we’re securing new jobs and through this deal alone, generating £1.6m a year for the county council which we’ll plough into frontline services, helping to reduce the impact of national funding reductions.”

Work is set to get underway on site early next year and the completed office is anticipated to be ready in summer 2020.

Loughborough University's Vice-Chancellor, Professor Robert Allison, said: “Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP) is already established as one of the largest Science Parks in the UK, with over 66,000m2 of high-quality lettable space, with more than 70 companies on site hosting over 2,000 jobs.

 “We are delighted that, through its partnership with Leicestershire County Council, The Access Group will have such a significant presence amongst LUSEP’s vibrant and well-established innovation community.

“The Access Group have a well-earned reputation as both one of the UK’s top employers and innovators, so they are a perfect fit for LUSEP. They are focussed on developing employees, graduates and technology, and have already established mutually beneficial links with the University since opening a technical development and support centre at LUSEP in November 2016.

“It is also very fitting that the new headquarters for Access is at the heart of the Loughborough and Leicester Science and Innovation Enterprise Zone, which could bring more than 21,000 new jobs and £123 million into the area over the next 25 years.”

Jon Jorgensen, Chief Sales Officer at The Access Group, said: “Access serves over 15,000 UK companies and employs in excess of 1,500 people. A third of our workforce is currently based in the Midlands, in Leicester, Loughborough and Lockington, with other offices across the UK including the City of London.

“As one of the fastest growing UK software companies, we needed to focus on the right location for our expansion, and decided that Loughborough was a perfect fit for our business. Loughborough is a logical choice as it gives us access to skilled people from the University and the surrounding area, along with excellent infrastructure connections to the whole of the UK.

“The culture of our organisation is underpinned by the mantra of - Love Work, Love Life - and we believe that we will be an employer of choice for people looking to build a career in a fast moving software business, based in the East Midlands.”

Sir John Peace, Chairman of Midlands Engine, said: “This is a shining example of how the public and private sector can work together. The innovative partnership will generate jobs, boosts skills and bolsters the local economy, as well as creating valuable income for Leicestershire County Council. 

“The Midlands is the beating heart of our nation and this investment will help our region’s people and businesses to prosper.”

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 18/115

The new building will be off Oakwood Drive at Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park.

The land is owned by Loughborough University - Leicestershire County Council will lease 4.5 acres where it will build the office HQ for The Access Group.

The deal – costing £22m - will generate £1.6m for the county council each year and will be ploughed back into services. Investing in property is generating extra cash, including £5m which is being invested in fixing and preventing potholes, reducing the impact of national funding reductions.

Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (www.lusep.co.uk )

Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP) expands from the Loughborough University Campus and is already established as one of the largest Science Parks in the UK with over 66,000m2 of high quality lettable space, with more than 70 companies on site hosting over 2,000 jobs. LUSEP received City Deal funding for further expansion in March 2016 and was announced as part of the Loughborough and Leicester Science and Innovation Enterprise Zone in February 2017, reflecting its significance as a key driver for regional economic prosperity.

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