Leveraging the value of consulting

The role that consulting can play in getting started as an entrepreneur is the subject of this week’s Enterprise Tuesday lecture, to be held tomorrow evening in the Department of Engineering.

Consulting can be either a standalone business, or may be used to leverage intellectual assets to create companies. Cambridge has seen both phenomena. One of the interesting features of the Cambridge entrepreneurial ecosystem is the large number of technology-focused consultants who are active in the cluster, more than 3,000 at last count.

In addition to technical excellence, these consultants also bring with them commercial skills to enable technologies to reach markets.

This week’s speakers are Gerald Avison, Chairman of TTP Group; Claire Ruskin, Interim CEO of Cambridge Network; and Paul Seabright, Head of Consultancy Services at Cambridge Enterprise.

Dr Avison is Co-Founder and Chairman of a privately owned technology consulting company, TTP Group, based near Cambridge. The company, established 24 years ago, employs 300 staff and develops diverse technology from diagnostic instruments, automated systems, communications products, digital printing technology, medical products and a wide diversity of industrial and consumer products.

Claire Ruskin played a substantial part in the start-up of three companies, CSR, Alphamosaic and Cyan, which were spun out of Cambridge Consultants (CCL). In 2001 she left CCL and joined PA Consulting Group as a member of the management team in PA’s Global Technology Group, where she has worked to help many global and local clients. Claire is on Red Gate Software’s Council of Advisors and she has recently taken on the role of CEO of Cambridge Network which brings people together to raise Cambridge’s game, collaborating for shared success and encouraging the growth of the region.

Paul Seabright joined Cambridge Enterprise in April 2009 as head of consultancy services. He has considerable experience of technology transfer in both the biotech and medtech sectors, a degree in biochemistry and a PhD in chemistry from Manchester. Paul was previously head of business development at Health Enterprise East where he was instrumental in building a successful technology transfer and consultancy organisation for the NHS in the region. Previously, he was a technology manager at Cambridge Enterprise for more than three years and led its life science team. Paul also spent five years as a senior scientist with a Cambridge biotech company developing its medtech business and has been a postdoctoral researcher with the MRC and the University of Cambridge.

Enterprise Tuesday is a series of lectures and networking sessions on entrepreneurial themes, managed and delivered by Cambridge Judge Business School’s Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (CfEL). It is free to attend and open to the wider community.

Tuesday’s lecture begins at 6pm and takes place in Lecture Theatre 0 at the Department of Engineering.

Photo credit: Walton Hall campus – Berrill lecture theatre by The Open University via Flickr

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