We build digital tools that help universities and colleges maximise their innovation capacity, support entrepreneurs and measure their impact.
Dhruv Majumdar, Director at Varsity Ventures Ltd (left), Marion Anderson, Student Enterprise Manager at University of Glasgow (middle), and Chris Shannon, Director at Varsity Ventures Ltd (right).
Every two hours a new business is created at a UK university (Universities UK, 2022). There’s growing demand from students, graduates and communities who are looking to their local universities for business support and expertise. As a result, more than ever, universities are investing in resources to develop and scale their enterprise and entrepreneurship services.
These services and the teams that manage them are unique, they serve multiple internal and external stakeholders. Ranging from early career researchers and undergraduates to regional SMEs and local governments.
The publication of the Knowledge Exchange Framework places renewed focus on the importance of knowledge exchange and university impact beyond the lab. Yet, many university entrepreneurship teams rely on spreadsheets and admin heavy processes to manage and deliver such services.
While other teams within higher education have a range of software providers serving their needs (Alumni mentoring, career services platforms, fundraising etc). University entrepreneurship teams, particularly student and graduate entrepreneurship services, have yet to be digitally transformed at many UK higher education institutions.
In 2020, Chris was leading an entrepreneurship team at a UK university. He searched the market hoping to find a tech solution that could help free up resources within his team from repetitive and administrative tasks.
What he discovered was that other than career services platforms and some impressive spreadsheet manipulation, most university entrepreneurship teams had the same pain and were in need of a solution that met their unique needs.
Varsity Ventures Ltd was registered in May 2021 and Dhruv joined the team to lead the development of our first product. Thanks to our team of developers and input from 30+ university advisors, we’ve launched our first platform designed specifically to support the daily tasks of university entrepreneurship teams and is currently in use across the UK.
(1) Musaddique, S. (2018) ‘More than 25% of university students run or plan to run their own business, shows new study’, Independent, 12th Feb. Available at: URL (Accessed: 27/04/22)
(2) ‘A business is born every two hours at UK universities’, Universities UK, 09 Mar. Available at: URL (Accessed: 27/02/22)
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