A business lounge for start-ups has opened inside the University of Manchester Innovation Centre as part of a £1.5 million investment in facilities.

Hot-desking is available inside the atrium, with a number of spin-outs and start-up companies already using the space.

Listed companies including WideCells and Nanoco are based within a stone’s throw of the Atrium Business Lounge which is based inside UMIC’s base on Grafton Street in the heart of the Oxford Road Corridor.

Head of UMIC Yvonne Loughlin said a co-working hub – currently being renovated as part of a wider £1.5m UMIC investment programme – will also open before the end of 2018.

“UMIC’s Atrium Business Lounge is now open for business from 8am to 6pm every day,” Loughlin said.

“The modern bespoke décor makes the lounge an ideal place for you to catch up on your emails, gather together for small meetings or simply just to relax with a coffee and snack after a long day.

“Hot-desking facilities are also available making UMIC the ideal base for entrepreneurs and start-up businesses.”

UMIC

UMIC, a division of UMI3, is wholly owned by The University of Manchester, and was founded to develop and maintain a world-class infrastructure for spin-outs and spin-in ventures.

The soon-to-open co-working space will house a variety of companies connected to the University’s Innovation Optimiser initiative as well as budding entrepreneurs beginning their start-up journey.

IO provides support for aspiring entrepreneurs wishing to develop start-up businesses, social ventures and research student enterprises. So far over 20 start-ups have graduated through its programme in less than three years.

The announcement to open the co-working hub comes after UMIC, home to biotech and hi-tech companies, increased its tenant engagement activity with the introduction of weekly yoga classes.

Desks inside the co-working hub will be rented out monthly, with four desks being available on a non-reserved basis for use by the hour.