LSBU banner

Tenants and graduate entrepreneurs head to Toronto to run their businesses

A group of competition winners have spent a week at Ryerson University to establish an International Business Launchpad programme
26 September 2017

Four London South Bank University (LSBU) tenants and two graduate businesses have spent a week in incubators located in Downtown Toronto to see how easy it is to run their businesses from across the Atlantic. This is part of LSBU's ongoing partnership with Ryerson University and a newly established International Business Launchpad programme between the two universities.

The pilot project will assess the benefits of operating from an International Launchpad in order to develop a model for UK and North American companies to access each other’s markets. For LSBU’s tenants and graduate entrepreneurs, there will also be opportunities to find new partners, access new markets and explore new investment prospects.

The group started running their businesses within Toronto’s immersive start-up scene, using Ryerson’s landing zones as a base to network and make connections. Whilst in Toronto, they have compiled reports to evaluate their experiences of running a business overseas.

The competition winners are:

Tom Williams and Benjamin Weld - Falcon DHQ

Fergal McEntee - Luz Consultancy

Maggy Blagrove – Active Communities

Jevon Daview – Albora

Harsha Patel – Doing Social

Ben Wilding – Cameron and Wilding

Lulu Mazzocco – Luma Works

Gurpreet Jagpal, Director of Research, Enterprise and Innovation at LSBU, said:

“There are a lot of similarities between not only the two universities but also between London and Toronto. Given the current global and political challenges, we are keen to explore how the UK and North America, using this strong partnership between LSBU and Ryerson, can help start-ups and SMEs scale internationally.

“As the UK’s Entrepreneurial University of the Year we run a number of SME growth programmes that enable local businesses to access LSBU’s expertise across a wide range of areas. This pilot programme is the next logical step for internationalising our offer so that we can tap into new markets from our central London location.”

Ryerson University, like LSBU, provides opportunities for their students to work on real projects with real companies and start-ups. Operating within a 10-zone network covering different areas of industry, from biomedicine to design, students are offered the chance to learn new skills, gain experience and solve real world problems in Ryerson’s DMZ, ranked first in North America as the leading university-based incubator.

Charles Falzon, Dean of Faculty of Communications and Design (FCAD) at Ryerson University, said:

“We are thrilled to have LSBU entrepreneurs visiting, engaging and collaborating with members of the Ryerson learning zones. This is a key opportunity for potential growth across the pond and to foster new business ventures.”

LSBU will be hosting a return visit for four Canadian companies after which the results and evaluation will be used to shape the development of further International Launchpads with other university partners.

Find out more about tenancy at LSBU.