Businesses will gather to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the University of Wolverhampton Science Park as the science park prepares to enter its latest phase of development.
Among the participants will be the site’s first ever tenant – Paul Kalinauckas – who is delighted to still be running a business from there today.
Mr Kalinauckas said the opening of the Science Park was an exciting time for Wolverhampton and its expansion and success had come as no surprise.
“The Science Park brought high-quality, professional accommodation into the city. Something which had been lacking before then,” he said. “I was proud to be the first tenant - it really was a beacon for Wolverhampton, showing that it was on the way up.”
Mr Kalinauckas originally worked as a business consultant but now runs BCRS Business Loans providing access to finance for SME’s and the company is going from strength to strength.
“The flexibility of the accommodation and management has enabled us to grow and make the offices our own,” he said. The close relationship with the University has been an added benefit, with opportunities for business links and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, working with enthusiastic graduates and academics.
Along with colleagues, Mr Kalinauckas has even started a lunchtime running club which uses the nearby canal.
“There is a great community feel among the tenants and we have all the facilities you could need, including security, reception staff and catering.”
Over 100 people, including tenants and University business support services representatives, will enjoy an informal celebration on Tuesday November 3 and will have a chance to see how the site has developed over the years. The original plans will be seen, alongside the latest hi-tech plans for the new development - a new £10.1m Science, Technology and Prototyping Centre, providing high specification laboratory and workshop space for science and engineering businesses the Black Country.
The three storey development will offer 4,000 square metres of space and feature high quality offices, labs and workshops, as well as a café and electric vehicle charging points.
The project has been part-funded through a £4.8m grant from the Growth Deal to the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership, with the remaining £5.3m coming from the University of Wolverhampton.
The University of Wolverhampton Science Park is currently home to over 80 businesses employing some 500 plus people. The new facility will provide capacity for up to forty new businesses focussed on science and technology based activities.
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