Today (10 October), Southampton City Council, in partnership with the British Library, officially launched the Business and IP Centre (BIPC) at Southampton Central Library to help entrepreneurs start and grow their business, project or next big idea.
Following a successful bid to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport earlier this year, the British Library has been working in partnership with Southampton City Council to establish a Business and IP Centre (BIPC) in Southampton, a beacon to all aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators in Southampton.
Supported by the Intellectual Property Office, the Southampton BIPC offers professional resources including Patent specifications, 1-2-1 support on business ideas, workshop sessions, access to market leading databases and information on business grants and access to industry-led market research tools and reports to find key opportunities.
The ‘hub’ offers free access to co-working professional spaces and specialised facilities including:
- PhotoHub: an inhouse studio where members of the public can take professional quality headshots
- SellersHub: dedicated space for professional product photography
- CreatorsHub: videography studio for recording and editing video content
To celebrate the launch of the BIPC at Southampton Central Library, Southampton City Council and the British Library were joined by business leaders and users from across Southampton including the Solent LEP and Hampshire Chamber of Commerce.
Isobel Oswell Head of Business Audiences at the British library, commented:
“It is our pleasure to partner with Southampton City Council to launch the latest in a network of BIPCs across the UK.
“Helping entrepreneurs is our mission and we know that the city of Southampton also shares this goal. We look forward to helping the citizens of Southampton get the inspiration and support they need to prosper.”
Councillor Satvir Kaur, Leader of Southampton City Council, also commented on the launch of the BIPC:
“Southampton is a city thriving with ambition and this dynamic innovation hub will help harness that. It is fantastic we can offer budding entrepreneurs from all sectors the opportunity to access professional resources for free; our city’s growth must come from investing in local people and talent. The BIPC will become a valued asset in Southampton and is set to play an important role in the economic and cultural future of our city by supporting new businesses to establish themselves and become successful. It was one of the opportunities we identified in our UK City of Culture bid and I’m really pleased to see some of that legacy coming to fruition.”
Councillor Kataria, Cabinet Member of Communities and Customer Engagement at Southampton City Council, added:
“The BIPC in Southampton Central Library will greatly benefit our entrepreneurial communities. Everyday citizens will now have a chance to join a thriving business community and get free access to professional resources to help them grow their own ideas.
“We have so much potential in Southampton and the BIPC is a powerful tool to help develop that potential.”