The UK Invades the Cove @ UCI

Past Tides
November 13, 2018 By Jackie Connor

Potential expansion into Irvine discussed.

Life science companies from throughout the U.K. made their way to UC Irvine (UCI) for the Greater Irvine Chamber’s 2018 Life Science Showcase event.

In collaboration with UCI Applied Innovation, the Greater Irvine Chamber hosted 10 executives from U.K.-owned life science companies to position Southern California and UCI as a strong global brand for innovation and entrepreneurship. Applied Innovation worked closely with the chamber to promote industry cluster growth in the region.

U.K. life science company executives join the Greater Irvine Chamber and UCI Applied Innovation executives for a lunchtime presentation at the Cove @ UCI.
Photo: Michelle Mar

“When you study the facts, every indicator reveals that the Irvine/Orange County innovation ecosystem is stronger and more competitive than most people know,” said Linda DiMario, Greater Irvine Chamber executive vice president of economic development and tourism. “Our life science and technology sector companies are leaders in their fields. And when the cost of doing business in Boston and Silicon Valley is 25 to 50 percent greater than doing business here, we can claim that Irvine/Orange County delivers a cost-effective, accessible, highly interactive and collaborative environment.”

This three-day event provided the visiting U.K. executives with the opportunity to consult with Irvine professionals, including a few from UCI, on potential expansion into the United States.

Applied Innovation’s Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Director Richard Sudek opened up the lunch meeting at the Cove @ UCI with highlights on UCI’s innovations and entrepreneurship programs and resources as well as focused on Irvine’s booming medical device and life science community. He talked about Southern California as a robust area for technology startups, with more than 30,000 STEM students graduating from universities across the region each year.

“Orange County is primed to accelerate research, innovation and entrepreneurship, positively impacting lives and transforming our regional economy,” said Sudek. “The convergence of these two — UCI’s strength and Orange County’s potential — is why UCI Applied Innovation exists. We serve as the crossroads where industry and university research meet, and offer a roadmap for the complex path that leads to startups and commercialized innovation.”

Richard Sudek, Applied Innovation chief innovation officer and executive director, answers questions during the Q&A portion of the presentation.
Photo: Michelle Mar

As part of the event, the company executives also toured UCI’s Beckman Laser Institute, an interdisciplinary center for biomedical optics. Beckman Laser Institute was selected as part of the tour to provide the guests with an example of UCI’s commitment to commercializing new technologies as well as the unique shared facilities within the institute.

“I’m really inspired to see what Applied Innovation and the Beckman Institute are doing,” said Giovanna Forte, chief executive officer of Forte Medical. “Whilst our tech Peezy Midstream is already selling in the USA, we have new medical devices in the pipeline. The excellence we have seen here around healthcare research, intelligence and finance is incredibly valuable. This visit will play a part in our decision to grow Forte Medical here, in Irvine.”

For more information about the Applied Innovation’s ecosystem partners and upcoming events, click here.