Cranfield Eagle Lab launched Image: Cranfield University

Innovation centre for ‘AvTech’ to open in December

Barclays and Cranfield University have announced a partnership to establish the first Eagle Lab dedicated to aviation technology, or AvTech, based on the University’s campus.

It will be one of the first cross-industry collaborations to accelerate the development of AvTech.

From December, the co-working and innovation space will open for ambitious entrepreneurs in industry to scale and grow.

Residents will receive business advice and mentoring from Barclays experts. They will also be able to access specialists and facilities at Cranfield University.

Jon Corbett Head of SME for Barclays in the South East Midlands and Cambridgeshire Image: Barclays Bank

Jon Corbett, head of SME for Barclays in the South East Midlands and Cambridgeshire said:

“New technology is rapidly transforming the aerospace and aviation industry, and we want to ensure businesses across the South East Midlands, large and small, can take advantage of and contribute to this huge opportunity.

“That’s why we’re excited to open a Barclays Eagle Lab here at Cranfield University, helping entrepreneurs turn a clever idea into a thriving business by giving them access to world-class facilities and a network of potential clients, investors and mentors.”

Part of aviation, innovation and entrepreneurship project

The Eagle Lab is the first step in the University’s ambitious aviation, innovation and entrepreneurship project. This will create specialist enterprise facilities and programmes at Cranfield University to support start-ups and SMEs.

The Lab will include over 60 desks laid out over two floors with a combination of private offices, meetings rooms, hot-desking and breakout spaces.

The launch of the Cranfield Eagle Lab follows the creation in April this year of a new business unit at Barclays called Barclays UK (BUK) Ventures.

BUK Ventures has an independent mandate to deliver new customer experiences at pace and scale and is responsible for growing the Eagle Lab network.

Barclays Eagle Lab launched at Cranfield University Image: Cranfield University

Professor Tom Stephenson, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Cranfield University, said:

“We are delighted that Barclays is opening an Eagle Lab on campus, marking the first step of our ambitious aviation, innovation and entrepreneurship project, an intensive support package for aerospace and aviation entrepreneurs.”