Venture Investment

Investment at Edinburgh

As one of the world’s top research-intensive universities, the University of Edinburgh has a wealth of talent, ideas and technology to help address tomorrow’s greatest challenges. Every year, the Enterprise Services team at Edinburgh Innovations supports entrepreneurial staff and students looking to translate their concepts and research into real-world impact via the formation of new companies.

As part of this journey, most startups and spinouts require external funding to finance their research, development and commercial activities. Although this can come from a mix of sources (including grants, competitions and loans), high-growth companies often fund most of their early activities via equity investment.

Alongside financial support, investors often bring experience, sector-specific expertise and deep networks of contacts. Supportive investors can also provide early-stage companies with the confidence to be ambitious in their growth plans.

What we do

Edinburgh Innovations (EI) has a small team of investment specialists who support EI clients and the wider Enterprise Services team and engage with investors. The team is responsible for:

  • Managing the University’s portfolio of early-stage equity positions through the Edinburgh Technology Fund
  • Managing the University’s early-stage investment funds, including Old College Capital
  • Supporting the University and our companies understand investment topics and engage with investors

Meet our Investment team.

Looking to raise investment?

In addition to Old College Capital, the University and Edinburgh Innovations have strong relationships with angel syndicates, family offices, venture and corporate venture capital firms. We also have access to market research platforms to help you find, research or understand specialist investors in your area.

In addition, the University is involved with programmes and partnerships that can help you find funding, including:

The best starting point is to contact EI’s staff or student advisers, who can direct you to support available and advise you on your journey to becoming ‘investment ready’. If you would like to have an informal chat with the team, please speak with your EI adviser or contact us at investment@ei.ed.ac.uk to book a slot in one of our fortnightly office hour sessions.

Commercialise your PhD

Another option to support your research or kick-start your entrepreneurial journey is to commercialise your research. In essence, this really means thinking about it in a different way.

Engineering biologist Maggie Hicks shares what she has learned on her journey towards commercialising her PhD, with business partner Florentina Winkelmann.

Looking to invest?

If you are interested in investing in high growth companies associated with the University of Edinburgh, please contact us at investment@ei.ed.ac.uk.

Our team are working on new ways to share details about our companies looking to raise investment with interested investors.

Responsible and patient investment

The University of Edinburgh is a signatory to the UN Principles of Responsible Investment and applies these principles when investing its funds. We also recognise that University technology often takes time to reach the market and hence needs supportive capital with a patient outlook. As such, we look to partner with (and encourage University companies to work with) investors who share these principles.

For more information, please see UN Principles for Responsible Investments, UN Sustainable Development Goals, Impact Management Project.

Header image: The University's Old College Quad, © http://www.nealesmith.com