New programme launched to support sustainable tech businesses in the West of England


Bristol-based business incubator SETsquared has launched a new business support programme with the University of Bath aimed at small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the West of England which are developing sustainable technologies.

The new West of England Sustainable Technologies Scale-Up Programme is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and will help accelerate the growth of 155 SMEs over the next 3 years.

The primary support will be provided through a Sustainability Workout – an online workshop which will help SMEs scrutinise their existing business model, understand their sustainability challenges and use sustainability and circular economy principles as key drivers for innovation.

There are many business benefits to taking this approach including reduced costs, strengthened customer relationships and improved supply chain resilience.

Three dates for the Sustainability Workout are confirmed for 2021 and more dates will be added in 2022 and 2023.

Pete Keevill, Entrepreneur in Resident for the WofE Sustainable Technologies Scale-Up Programme, said: The need to make the change to a dramatically more sustainable economy becomes more urgent every day to avoid the worst effects of Climate Chaos.

“Customers are demanding that businesses respond and regulators and big companies are beginning to force the pace of change. But in every major shift there are huge opportunities for businesses that can anticipate, adapt to and then exploit the change and I am excited by the innovation “toolkit” we are bringing together to help West of England SMEs thrive in a sustainable future.”

Stephen Perris, Business Development Manager at Calne-based Pinweld, which has developed an innovative new precision technology for joining high value plastic components, has received support through SETsquared, said: “As a relatively new company Pinweld, like many other start up companies, has no other option but to work incredibly hard and move extraordinarily fast to attract potential customers, talent and additional funding.

“A good dose of straight talking from experienced individuals has certainly helped us shape our business. In particular the research associate team at the University of Bath who put together some presentations to a group of advanced engineering and polymer scientists which has established a number of foundations and initial contacts for the future of Pinweld.

“As a company initially focused on the joining of thin sheet plastics we have expanded our research and development into pipes, manufacturing plus the possibility of joining plant based polymers.

“Also, many hours of support through SETsquared has helped us redefine and expand our business plans through the Innovation Workout programme. We continue to revisit the various plans we develop and create additional ones as new opportunities pop up.

“Were certainly not out of the woods yet but the help we receive from SETsquared certainly increases our chances of survival and I would urge any company looking for business support to help accelerate their growth register to join the SustainableTechnologies Scale-Up Programme.”

To launch the new programme an online event, Changing Your Business to Change the World, is taking place on Wednesday 9th June from 9.00 – 10.30. 

The event is open to anyone interested to learn more about the programme and to connect with experts in this field. Learn more and register your place for this free to attend event