// EXPERT PROFILE //
Driving innovation :
HOW ACCELERATOR PROGRAMMES ARE BOOSTING THE UK ’ S SPACE INDUSTRY
The UK space sector is worth more than £ 16.4 billion per year and employs over 47,000 people . Entrepreneurial support from space accelerators plays an integral role in the industry ’ s growth . Mike Stephens , CEO Entrepreneurial Spark – Space Accelerators , explains how accelerator programmes are boosting the space industry .
BY FOSTERING INNOVATION
A DIVERSE WORKFORCE , ACCELERATOR PROGRAMMES HELP UNEARTH A NEW EMERGING
SPACE ECOSYSTEM THAT DRIVES
FOR START- UPS AND FOR ESTABLISHED COMPANIES .
S THE CEO of Entrepreneurial
Spark , having spent the last two years running corporate accelerator programmes for a range of sectors , it is my pleasure to lead innovation , drive entrepreneurial support and create a positive impact in the UK ’ s flourishing space industry .
With the UK space sector worth over £ 16.4 billion pa and employing over 47,000 people , entrepreneurial support from space accelerators plays an integral role in the industry ’ s growth – last year , start-ups which had participated in UK Space Agency Accelerator pilots generated almost £ 9 million in investments and created 80 new jobs . With many aspiring entrepreneurs signing up for similar opportunities , it is fantastic to see the role accelerators play to inspire entrepreneurs to join the UK ’ s space industry .
Space accelerator programmes offer invaluable support to entrepreneurs passionate about space exploration and there are numerous programmes available in the UK and globally , all aiming to help incubate space-focused startups and drive them to success .
These programmes include Seraphim Space Accelerator , designed to get SpaceTech companies investment-ready ; Astropreneurs Space Start Up Accelerator , Starburst Aerospace and of course , the UK Space Agency Accelerator , run in partnership between the space commercialisation experts at Exotopic and us here at Entrepreneurial Spark , with funding from the UK Space Agency .
Entrepreneurial Spark is founded on the belief that creativity and curiosity can change the world . As CEO , I love to see the limitless possibilities in people and the businesses they create and strive to ensure accelerators are the means where infectious imagination meets desire , generating change and encouraging entrepreneurs to find their place in the business ecosystem . And together with Exotopic , we lead our UK Space Agency Accelerator programme , providing vital insights and expertise for those entrepreneurs interested in developing their ideas and their businesses within the UK space industry . We believe that entrepreneurs hold the key to unlocking a bright future for everyone . Which is why we ’ ve designed a series of programmes for entrepreneurs at every level of their space journey ; and why I am proud to be a part of this mission to ensure that accelerators are the powerful engine that drives innovation and growth in the UK space sector .
The UK Space Agency Accelerator ’ s Explore programme encourages entrepreneurs into space . A nine-week accelerator sprint designed to give a burst of pace within a short time frame , it is aimed at those with a desire to start a growth business or social enterprise . Accelerator programmes aimed at early-stage businesses either within the space sector or those looking in to break into the sector , help lay the foundations to build high-growth , scalable space businesses . They are an excellent opportunity to work with a panel of experts and amazing cohorts of like-minded entrepreneurs to start an exciting new venture by helping identify the best early customers and routes to market . Early-stage accelerator
Intelligent SME . tech