Working with business, public and voluntary organisations


Latest news from Loughborough University

3 Feb 2016

New public- and private-backed growth programme launched

Growth Builder, the business growth programme designed by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, launches today and is open for applications from British high-growth businesses.

Entrepreneurs and public and private sector organisations have come together to build the tailored 12-month programme, designed to provide unrivalled access to government, university innovation, corporate expertise, investors, and successful entrepreneurs.

Designed by NatWest, BT, UCL, Loughborough University, UKTI, the UK Business Angels Association, PIE Mapping and Fast Growth Forum, the Growth Builder programme is the first of its type to bring together public and private partners to offer a fully adaptive educational programme for British businesses that want to take on the next stage of growth.

Applications open today with a launch event at BT Tower. The first programme will kick-off in late April 2016 with monthly events, workshops, and coaching groups. Organisers will identify an initial cohort of up to 50 high-growth UK companies and will work with them over a 12-month period.

Companies selected for the programme will be chosen by a panel of industry experts, each according to their own merit. The panel will be looking for proven successes with the potential for significant future growth. As a guideline companies should have either £1.5m revenue or 20 staff and have grown by over 20% per year for the last two years.

Ed Wray, co-founder of Betfair and active angel investor, said: "British start-ups are doing a great job, but more can be done to help them scale to become global and industry-leading success stories. Growth Builder has been designed to tackle some of the current barriers to this. Bringing together leading players in public and private sector organisations within a collaborative peer group, the focus is on providing promising entrepreneurs with unrivalled access to the most useful names in business, angel and venture funds, global universities, Government and entrepreneurship."

Sherry Coutu CBE, serial entrepreneur and investor, commented: "The UK is leading the world in the creation of innovative and fast-growth start-up companies - we have much to be proud of. With this in mind, I applaud the efforts of Growth Builder, which is building on the work we did together last year with RBS on the Scale-up Report, working to increase the number of businesses that grow from small ones to large ones by bringing together entrepreneurs with the specific goal of accessing new and game-changing contacts. I look forward to seeing the impact this programme will have on productivity and UK economic growth for years to come.” 

Notes for editors

About NatWest

NatWest is part of RBS. RBS is a UK-based banking and financial services company, headquartered in Edinburgh. RBS provides a wide range of products and services to personal, commercial and large corporate and institutional customers through its two main subsidiaries, The Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest, as well as through a number of other well-known brands including Ulster Bank and Coutts.

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world.  It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of five customer-facing lines of business: BT Global Services, BT Business, BT Consumer, BT Wholesale and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2015, BT Group’s reported revenue was £17,979m with reported profit before taxation of £2,645m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. 

For more information, visit

About UCL (University College London)

UCL was founded in 1826. We were the first English university established after Oxford and Cambridge, the first to open up university education to those previously excluded from it, and the first to provide systematic teaching of law, architecture and medicine. We are among the world's top universities, as reflected by performance in a range of international rankings and tables. UCL currently has over 35,000 students from 150 countries and over 11,000 staff. Our annual income is more than £1

Follow us on Twitter @uclnews | Watch our YouTube channel

About Loughborough University

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, putting it among the best universities in the world, and was named University of the Year in the What Uni Student Choice Awards 2015.Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. It was 2nd in the 2015 THE Student Experience Survey and was named Sports University of the Year 2013-14 by The Times and Sunday Times. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

In September 2015 the University opened an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.

About the UKTI

UKTI works with UK based businesses to ensure their success in international markets through exports. We also encourage and support overseas companies to look at the UK as the best place to set up or expand their business. UKTI offers expertise and contacts through its extensive network of specialists in the UK, and in British embassies and other diplomatic offices around the world. For more information on UKTI, visit

About the UK Business Angel Association

The UK Business Angels Association is the national trade association representing angel and early stage investment in the UK.  Each year private investors account for circa £1.5 billion of early stage investment in the UK – the single largest source of early stage capital in this country. The UK Business Angels Association represents and connects all those involved in the angel investment market, including early stage VC funds, Banks and also non traditional sources of finance, as well as advisers and intermediaries; policy makers and academics with a view to ensuring a coherent ecosystem for financing the growth of start-up and early stage businesses. The trade association has a number of roles:

  • Building and Connecting the Angel Ecosystem
  • The Voice of the Angel Community to Government and Policy Makers
  • Improving Quality, Standards and Education
  • Resource for Market Intelligence and Thought Leadership
  • Providing Access to Quality Dealflow

About PIE Mapping

PIE Mapping is creating a vehicle management and commercial vehicle journey planning platform for any person or business that has to manage drivers, vehicles and customer orders. This is being delivered for DPD UK (PIE for Delivery).  This includes our Smart City offering PIE for Construction which navigates HGVs, minimising the likely collisions with cyclist. This is being delivered for Canary Wharf Group Southbank Place project. Our mission is to provide a solution that every business with a fleet can afford, easily use, and access time dependent information to increase efficiency.

PIE is the winner of Last Mile Labs, runner up on Cognicity Transport Challenge.  Selected Technation200 company for 2015. 

About the Fast Growth Forum

Fast Growth Forum and Fast Growth Icons are events for growth businesses that help the founders understand the challenges they will face as they scale. Forum looks at the first major growth transition when you grow to 50+ employees, and Icons is all about the hurdles to be overcome to reach £100m+ of revenue. The events are founded in the belief that it is the quality of your execution, not the quality of your ideas that matter most in creating a successful business.