This workshop was run by Torquil Goodwin, the Principle Business Adviser for CUE Business Solutions. “CUE aims to make people aware of the business support that is available, but more importantly, simplifying it to make it easy to access and to let them get the maximum benefit from it.”

Torquil started the workshop by explaining that growth strategies tend to be specific to a business, but there are common themes. The main theme being the ‘Valley of Death’ that all businesses have to overcome. The Valley of Death is the gap that exists between innovation and commercialisation, where many businesses suffer from a lack of resources and funding.

Torquil explained that in order to overcome this gap, businesses need a clear vision of growth. “Otherwise how do you know if you are on the right path?” The use of partners, existing research and investment is key. These three factors are what Torquil referred to as the ‘Champion shift’. The use of existing commercialisation resources is how to mitigate risk. By utilising the champion shift and by mitigating risk you create a smaller Valley of Death for your company or innovation. “You will never be able to avoid risk totally. Get over it! What you can do is mitigate risk.”

CUE can help along this journey by providing advice and support and access to networks, both local and regional, for any business to develop their growth strategy.

(Author: Tom Liggins, University of Warwick)