Business partnership receives top grade from Innovate UK

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A KNOWLEDGE transfer partnership between the University of Portsmouth and Entec International has been awarded the highest possible grade of ‘outstanding’ by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency.

Entec manages the supply of maintenance, repair and operations of spare parts to global businesses in the food and beverage industries with manufacturing operations at the end of complex supply chains.

The partnership delivered an extension to Entec’s business model, which improved the procurement process in their global supply chains.

Business, operations research and maths academics from the university worked with Entec staff and Innovate UK to produce an industry first ‘toolset’ which calculates and presents complex inventory data, using a series of business algorithms, in a simplified graphic format.

As a result of the partnership, Entec generated revenue of $3m (£2.4m) and confirmed $20m (£16m) of revenue from one major client within two years. Entec also confirmed five new contracts.

Entec has also opened an office in Portsmouth to continue to foster the relationship with the university and benefit from the research base.

The university has seen the submission of three peer-reviewed journal papers, discussions at international conferences and saw three masters and two undergraduate projects through to completion.

Mark Xu, professor of information management at the university, said: ‘In our view, the relationship with Entec which evolved through this partnership not only provided a knowledge transfer partner but brought an inextricable link to knowledge creation and innovation into the university.’