Oxiflex, launched on 1 October, has been set up jointly by Oxford Innovation and accountant Grant Thornton.
Joanne Willett, Oxford Innovation’s marketing manager, explained that the service is designed “to provide start-up businesses with an opportunity to get a foot in the door, to establish a professional image”. This could be vital in the current economic climate.
The scheme provides fledgling high-tech enterprises with services such as hot desking, telephone answering, a postal address and meeting rooms. Businesses will also be able to access a specialist business angel network and make use of low-cost book-keeping as well as a range of consultants.
Oxiflex does not require its start-ups to commit to taking up premises initially thus reducing costs for the new businesses involved. However the incubator hopes these businesses will then develop and take up space in one of Oxford Innovation’s ten centres across the South East.
Oxiflex plans to support businesses not quite ready to take up premises. This is normally where entrepreneurs are still in the process of finding investment and trying to make their technology commercial.
Oxford Innovation’s Joanne Willett said that the criteria for eligibility are the same as for Oxford Innovations’ centres: “high-growth, knowledge-based science and technology start-ups in the main”. Start-ups in other sectors are also considered, with the different centres focusing on particular industries.
For further information on the Oxiflex virtual incubation service, see Oxford Innovation.