DOZENS of business people whose careers and businesses began at a thriving hub in Portsmouth gathered to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
A wall plaque was unveiled to mark the milestone for record-breaking business and innovation centre Portsmouth Technopole, which provides office space and support services for 40 fledgling firms.
With occupancy levels of more than 90 per cent, the Technopole is run by Oxford Innovation, which manages 21 centres across the UK.
More than 150 people work for a diverse range of firms at the 20,000sq ft landmark building in Kingston Crescent.
Tribute was paid by Chris Allington, Oxford Innovation’s managing director of business and innovation centres, to the entrepreneurial couple who founded Oxford Innovation and part-funded the building of the Technopole.
Sir Martin and Lady Audrey Wood were guests of honour at the event.
Mr Allington told more than 50 guests: ‘At the heart of our business remains the original ethos of Sir Martin and Lady Audrey Wood to support start-up and growing companies.
‘This objective has never been more topical than today as the UK economy emerges from recession.’
He added: ‘When I’m speaking across the UK, I regularly describe how the innovation centre business is not about the building or its commercial performance. It’s about building destinations for business with vibrant, self-supporting communities.
‘I genuinely believe there is the market demand for at least five more of these centres in this region.’