open for business

Highlights from the heart of an expanding Campus

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

As at August 2020, our occupancy was over 75% and we have accommodated 31 tenant companies ranging from established local and multinational organisations, start-ups and spin-outs, to charities and University business units. 

We are pleased to say that our tenants have all risen to the challenges of 2020 with their innovative energy and entrepreneurial spirit, with several companies working collaboratively on COVID-19 related projects, gaining recognition for individual and company achievements and success in funding and investment taking them to the next levels of business growth and a brighter future in 2021 and beyond.

Highlights - year 4

Engage Invest Exploit - EIE 2021 logo
The cohort for EiE2021(Engage Invest Exploit) has been announced featuring 32 of the most promising innovative, data-driven high growth companies in various categories, seeking funding from seed to series A.

A new 'Wildcard' category has been introduced for 2021 and includes Roslin Innovation Centre tenant Beta Bugs Ltd. The entrepreneurial company develop and distribute high-performance breeds of Black Soldier Fly for the 'insects as feed' industry.

EiE is the premier technology investor showcase takes place on 10th June (virtual) and will feature data-driven, high-growth technology companies, with an incredible line up of fantastic speakers. 
Registration now open. 
Dr Thomas Farrugia, Beta Bugs Ltd outside LARIF on Easter Bush Campus
Beta Bugs Ltd, a start-up based at Roslin Innovation Centre, has expanded their team and launched a new insect breeding facility at on Easter Bush Campus.

Founded by entrepreneur and PhD graduate, Dr Thomas Farrugia, the company is at the forefront of driving a sustainable bio economy in Scotland, developing and distributing high-performance insect breeds as a source of protein for animal feed.

Thomas joined Deep Science Ventures, our FAST Programme partner, where he researched how environmentally friendly and versatile insect-based products could be and how they could provide a different source of protein and potentially change the feeding habits of livestock and fish farms.


AccelerateHER Awards 2021 Finalists announcement
The  AccelerateHER Awards 2021 for female business founders announced its semi-finalists and this includes two of Roslin Innovation Centre's young entrepreneurs. Ishani Malhotra, MD and Founder of Carcinotech Ltd and Kate Cameron, CEO and Founder of Cytochroma Ltd will be pitching in the MedTech and Science category.

The awards are designed to accelerate the growth, visibility and backing of female-led companies. They are open to ambitious women who play a leading role in companies with strong global growth potential, providing participants with an ideal platform to connect with AccelerateHER’s network of door openers, experts and business angels.

The semi-finalists will pitch their businesses to a panel of highly experienced judges online and a shortlist will then progress to this year’s virtual final on Thursday, 25 March.
Keep Calm and Canter On merchandise branded for Roslin Innovation Centre
Whilst we missed out on the usual festivities in December such as our annual themed Christmas Quiz, Blue Banana gatherings, the Dick Vet pantomime and Campus Christmas raffle, we did want to thank our tenant companies for their continued patience and efforts in managing work challenges during the coronavirus restrictions. 

We have all faced difficult circumstances over recent months. Health and wellbeing is important so we wanted to share an inspirational message to 'Keep Calm and Canter On'. 

Personalised printed water bottles and coasters were distributed safely by Santa's elves (Holly Hazel and Jolly Jess) to tenant staff as a festive gift and to help keep staff hydrated and happy in 2021. 


Scotsman Life Sciences Conference 2020 - panel discussion team on Animal Health, Agritech, Aquaculture
Debating 'The Future of the Life Sciences Sector'. Leading experts and senior healthcare leaders from across Scotland and the UK gathered virtually on 3rd December for Scotland's annual Life Sciences Conference 2020, to share insight into how the sector’s response to Covid-19 is accelerating innovation and giving rise to emerging technologies.

Opening keynotes were followed by Panel Discussions and Subsector Strategy Panel Discussions including Animal Health, Agritech and Aquaculture - chaired by Roslin Innovation Centre's CEO, John Mackenzie, with hot desk tenant Dr Lawrence Brown (DIT Scotland), together with Simon Docherty (Institute of Global Food Security, Queen’s University Belfast) and Karen O'Hanlon (The Data Lab) and Heather Jones (Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre).
Scotsman Life Sciences Conference 2020 - panel discussion team on Animal Health, Agritech, Aquaculture
The Scotsman interviewed Jacqui Matthews, Chief Technology Officer of Roslin Technologies, who leads on strategic partnerships and manages the research and development programme focusing on bringing scientific innovations to the agri and animal health sectors. 

Bridging the gap between academia, commercialisation and investment, Roslin Technologies is a joint venture between The University of Edinburgh, Roslin Institute and two investment and business development partners.

Open for business during the Covid-19 crisis. "We went back into the laboratory as quickly as we could but obviously we've had to introduce protocols about hygiene and social distancing – we feel we’re in safe hands at our HQ in the wonderful Roslin Innovation Centre!"

Read The Big Interview as published in The Scotsman, 29 November 2020


Emma McCallum, Project Co-ordinator Midlothian Science Zone

Midlothian Science Zone has appointed Emma McCallum in the role of project co-ordinator, to increase engagement and collaboration within the Midlothian business community and beyond, raising awareness to the opportunities of this centre of excellence for animal health, research and science focused business the region presents.

Emma McCallum took up role in October 2020, based at Roslin Innovation Centre, and will work with the project's Steering Group to deliver on the key objectives of their Business Plan: to stimulate economic growth within the region's science and research sector; promote the diversity, prestige, quality and capability of Midlothian Science Zone and to attract more companies, particularly those with a One Health focus and open to collaboration.
Dr Ian Fotheringham, Managing Director and founder of Ingenza Ltd

Congratulations to our tenants, Thomas Farrugia CEO and founder of Beta Bugs Ltd and Ishani Malhotra founder and Managing Director of Carcinotech Ltd, both joining this development programme for talented, innovative and ambitious entrepreneurs.

The business founders joining Unlocking Ambition this year have been specifically chosen for their potential to contribute to Scotland’s economic recovery from COVID-19 and Scotland’s journey towards a net zero economy.

View full list of entrepreneurs Unlocking Ambition


Dr Ian Fotheringham, Managing Director and founder of Ingenza Ltd

Many congratulations to Dr Ian Fotheringham, Managing Director and founder of Ingenza Ltd, who has been awarded an MBE for services to Industrial Biotechnology in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. 

This accolade recognises Ian’s position as a well-known industrial biotechnology expert. He originally gained extensive industrial experience within the Monsanto group based in the United States before founding Ingenza, the UK’s leading synthetic biology and industrial biotechnology company in 2003, 

The company is based at Roslin Innovation Centre and has grown organically, working across diverse sectors from fuels to biopharmaceuticals, as a result of its innovative technology platforms.


Clean Water Wave and Pure Water International Clean Aqua for Everyone (CAFE) filtration systems - tenant company at Roslin Innovation Centre

This month we welcomed two companies working together to deliver bespoke water treatment technology with Clean Aqua For Everyone (CAFE) filtration systems.

Clean Water Wave blend advanced technology with robust engineering, to transform polluted ground and surface water into clean water, safe for consumption and discharge. A social enterprise, passionate about the environment with profits going to support low income communities with water issues, and research into oceanic pollution and climate change through the Global Oceanic Environmental Survey (GOES).

Pure Water International is a new innovative Scottish start-up providing safe, clean, sustainable, decentralised water packages. The team of highly experienced design, fabrication and installation professionals have extensive experience overseas, particularly in African markets. 


"There is no doubt that the coronavirus pandemic certainly made 2020 a challenging year for all of us and required Roslin Innovation Centre to implement new ways of working and operating within our public areas, lab and office space for the safety of our staff, tenants and visitors.  

"We would like to thank everyone for your positivity and collegiality as we continue to work together to address the challenges posed by COVID-19 during these uncertain times."

John Mackenzie, CEO, Roslin Innovation Centre