open for business

Highlights from the heart of an expanding Campus

Roslin Innovation Centre opened for business in August 2017. Two years on, our unique business gateway is proving to be a hotbed of growth, entrepreneurship and collaboration within the innovative environment of the University of Edinburgh’s Easter Bush Campus. 

Approaching the end of 2019, we now have a 75% occupancy with 25 tenant companies ranging from established local and multinational organisations, start-ups and spin-outs, to charities and University business units.

Highlights - year THREE

PigBoost project launch banner - Uganda

Scientists, farmers, technicians, veterinarians and business managers from Uganda, New Zealand and the UK will take part in PigBoost, a data-driven project that aims to address low average production and poor animal health - a common challenge among pig farmers in Uganda.

In the first phase, The Roslin Institute and AbacusBio are partnering with Ugandan-based organisations, funded by a £500,000 grant from the Global Challenges Research Fund.

At least 40,000 pigs will be fitted with electronic tags to store information about breed, size, birth rate, disease syndrome, weight, among other characteristics, generating accurate data that will be accessible through a smartphone application. 

Dr Timothy Byrne, Managing Director of AbacusBio International based at Roslin Innovation Centre, says the data on individual pigs will guide technicians to give targeted services to farmers.


Duradiamond Software logo

Roslin Innovation Centre welcomes innovative agritech company, Duradiamond Software, as their newest tenant. 

The company develops proprietary, farmer focused business and market intelligence solutions for domestic and international livestock markets. Core products are iLivestock and eWeigh, designed to allow farmers to be more efficient at a lower cost point.

The company has recently gone global after securing contracts in South Africa and Australia for their agricultural software that provides digital solutions to the farming sector.

Campus Christmas Raffle prizes and tickets

The annual Easter Bush Campus Christmas Reception took place on 19th December in the Atrium of the William Dick Building. 

As well as festive refreshments and entertainment by the Dick Vet Musicians, one of the highlights is the Christmas Charity Raffle. This year the raffle raised a total of £466.90 in support of Thornton Rose, Riding for the Disabled Group, Midlothian and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, protecting hedgehogs and an initiative that Easter Bush Campus is part of. 

A big thank you to everyone who purchased raffle tickets and also to those who donated a great selection of prizes.


Christmas jumper line up at Roslin Innovation Centre Christmas Quiz event

The theme for our annual Tenant’s Christmas Quiz was ‘Festive Foodies’. Teams were hungry for the challenge, with a record 19 teams and over 70 participants. Quiz Master John Gardner of Censo Biotechnology did a great job presenting the questions. 

So who was the signature dish and who got stuffed?! Winning team was'An Ocean of Knowledge, an Inch Deep' starring Kajeka Ltd and Cytochroma UK; top team name was 'The Pheasant Pluckers' aka Greengage Lighting and the wooden spooners were 'Away in a Merger', a Synpromics Ltd team. 

Breakfast rolls and refreshments fuelled the teams and many entered in to the festive spirit with an impressive line up of Christmas jumpers.

Students in the lab at Roslin Innovation Centre Research Hotel

Students of the Infectious Diseases and One Health (IDOH) Erasmus MSc programme and the MSc in Animal Biosciences were hosted at Roslin Innovation Centre’s ‘Research Hotel’ for a second year. The Research Hotel provides ready to use state-of-the art office and lab space with access to standard lab equipment and the 30 students, representing 20 countries, utilised bench space as well as tissue culture hoods and incubators. 

IDOH is a partnership of some of Europe's leading research-intensive universities in the field of infectious diseases and the one health concept, which seeks to improve health in people, animals and for the benefit of the environment. 

The three founding partners are Université de Tours, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and the University of Edinburgh. 


The Scotsman Life Sciences Scotland Supplement 2019 featuring article on Tripe A by John Mackenzie

The Scotsman Life Sciences Conference 2019 is the annual meeting for this growing sector and attracts  professionals in industry, academia and healthcare. The event introduces the opportunities we have in Scotland to become leaders in innovation and realise our ambition. 

John Mackenzie, CEO of Roslin Innovation Centre, contributed to the accompanying Life Science Supplement promoting Scotland's animal health, aquaculture and agritech sectors.  John is a driving force behind the creation and growth of the Triple-A industry leadership subgroup and the sector has gone "From new kid to major player", maturing fast and firmly established as a key player as the life sciences sector strives for an £8 billion turnover target by 2025.

'How the Triple-A life sciences sub-sector is maturing as it pushes for growth' 
Roslin Innovation Centre celebrating 2 years of business with cake shared with tenants in the open-plan office

It was a pleasure to introduce representatives from Scottish Development International (SDI) offices in London and Boston to the facilities, research expertise, innovation and collaboration opportunities we have here on Campus - a location for business in Scotland.

As Scotland’s inward investment agency, SDI help businesses from around the world do business in or with Scotland and promote the research, innovation, talent and investment support available. 

Emily Lekkas (left) is International Senior Specialist, Life Sciences & Healthcare, providing support to international companies looking to partner with Scotland's commercial, clinical and academic communities across the digital health, medical devices, pharmaceutical services, regenerative medicine, precision medicine, industrial biotech, chemical sciences and animal health industries. 


Roslin Innovation Centre celebrating 2 years of business with cake shared with tenants in the open-plan office

We extended a fond farewell to our colleague Frances Burgess. Frances worked in roles at Roslin sites for 24 years including The Roslin Institute, Roslin BioCentre, Midlothian Science Zone and finally as Senior Administrator and Tenant Liaison with Roslin Innovation Centre.

Frances played a vital role in our relocation from Roslin BioCentre to Roslin Innovation Centre, working between both sites for many months and liaising with tenants during this transition period - in particular Ingenza Ltd, our largest tenant who joined us here in July 2018.

Our best wishes to Frances on her retirement which will allow her to spend more time with her family and young grandchildren, as well as continuing to enjoy her travels.   
Roslin Innovation Centre celebrating 2 years of business with cake shared with tenants in the open-plan office

Two years on, Roslin Innovation Centre is proving to be a hotbed of growth, entrepreneurship and collaboration within the innovative environment of the University of Edinburgh’s Easter Bush Campus.

We celebrated the continued success and this presented a great occasion to recognise our growth in terms of occupancy, the diversity and capabilities of our tenants and also their achievements.

By the end of 2019 we will have 75% occupancy with 23 tenant companies collaborating in animal sciences, agritech and One Health so a larger celebration cake will need to be ordered for this time next year!


Scottish EDGE assessment panel at Roslin Innovation Centre

Roslin Innovation Centre hosted a 1st Stage Assessment Day for Round 15 of Scottish EDGE, a competition aimed at identifying and supporting Scotland’s innovative, high-growth potential entrepreneurial talent.

Three minute video presentations and applications for potential business ideas in the 'Science' category were assessed by an independent panel of assessors: John Mackenzie (Roslin Innovation Centre), Kathryn Cameron (Scottish Enterprise), Barbara Blaney (Edinburgh Innovations), Ian Archer - (IBioIC) and Alexandra McConnachie (MBA - GRID).

Successful applicants can secure awards of up to £100,000 plus a fantastic package of support from Scottish EDGE. If you think you have the EDGE then Round 16 will open in January 2020.


"With more than £300,000 contribution to the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine and Campus from Roslin Innovation Centre operations by July 2020, and more than £1 million turnover per year forecast within the following financial year, I am delighted that Roslin Innovation Centre will become a profit centre of the University of Edinburgh, after only three years of operation."

John Mackenzie, CEO, Roslin Innovation Centre