For science and engineering based startups, getting off the ground and commercialising your idea can be challenging.

Knowing what support is around is half the battle, so Dr. Andy Collins, lecturer at the University of Bristol’s QTEC, and Business Development Associate for the Quantum Technologies Innovation Centre has put together some initial deep tech resources you could turn to.

Business support – pre-incubation

QTEC is a pre-incubation programme for academics and early-stage businesses to develop their quantum and deep tech businesses. Each year, QTEC offers scientifically minded individuals the training and support needed to develop their technology idea into viable business opportunity. Over the past four cohorts, QTEC has supported the creation of 31 new companies based on technologies which underpin quantum industry. 

“QTEC gave me the critical time to start the business and supported me on the journey from post-doc engineer to start-up founder.”  Evangelos Zympeloudis, CEO & Cofounder, iCOMAT

“The QTEC programme provides a clear structure and the team were very supportive, which really helped me as I was starting my company.”  Carmen Palacios-Berraquero, CEO & Cofounder, Nu Quantum

Business support – incubation

SETsquared Bristol is a world-leading tech incubator for start-ups. Based at Engine Shed, it offers early-stage entrepreneurs in the UK a bespoke business programme to help them make an impact in the world. Current SETsquared members include KETS Quantum Security, a University of Bristol spinout which uses quantum photonics to deliver next generation cybersecurity tools, and Xavier Analytics, a Xerox accounting tool.

“SETsquared has been invaluable for us for trusted advice, training and information, at all stages but especially during the acquisition.”  Helen Lloyd, Co-founder, Xavier Analytics

Deep tech facilities and support services

Quantum Technologies Innovation Centre (QTIC) offers exceptional facilities and support services for quantum and deep tech companies to launch, grow and connect. Based at the University of Bristol’s 1 Cathedral Square in the centre of Bristol, it offers flexible shared and dedicated laboratory space, 3D printing and electronics hackspace, access to equipment pools, offices, workspaces and meeting rooms, and free membership of Engine Shed’s Members’ Lounge.

“QTIC has all the right ingredients that enable us to use their network and build new links. The labs and equipment are fantastic – there is nothing comparable for quantum and quantum service companies in the UK.”  Dr Josh Silverstone, Qontrol

Quantum business support advisor, Dr. Andy CollinsThe University of Bristol Cleanroom is open to external individuals and companies, alongside University researchers. The cleanroom comprises several class-1000-rated rooms and houses process tools for lithography, dry etch, deposition, chemical processing, post processing and characterisation for rapid prototyping of a range of devices, including photonic structures, microfluidics, micro-lenses, integrated circuits and MEMS.Deep.


Dr. Andy CollinsAndy is a lecturer at the University of Bristol’s QTEC, and Business Development Associate for the Quantum Technologies Innovation Centre (QTIC). He supports entrepreneurs and start-ups to launch and grow deep tech companies.

Main I=mage Credit: Science Creates