Former Government Minister Steven Norris says Londoneast-uk Business and Technical Park is providing start-up and emerging science-related businesses with access to state-of-the-art facilities that money cannot buy.
Speaking at the official launch of the new park – situated on the former manufacturing site of global pharmaceutical company Sanofi in Dagenham, east London – Mr Norris said Londoneast-uk consists of unique buildings and facilities that would cost upwards of £50m to build from new.
Now under the ownership of SOG Group, the UK’s leading independent business park owner and operator, Mr Norris described the regeneration taking place at Londoneast-uk as a great opportunity for east London.
Addressing an audience of business leaders and key stakeholders in the City on Wednesday, May 27 Mr Norris said SOG Group has a reputation for creating ‘real jobs for real people’ by regenerating sites through private finance and without a single penny of public grants.
He said Londoneast-uk will be operating as a sister-site to the SOG-owned Heath Business and Technical Park in Runcorn, Cheshire, where SOG had transformed the former chemicals headquarters of ICI into an “astoundingly successful” business park that today provides employment for over 2000 people.
Mr Norris added: “What you have at Londoneast-uk are scientific facilities; for example production facilities for pharmaceuticals which are temperature controlled, dust controlled, humidity controlled. They are in excellent condition because they were producing right to the end. These facilities would probably cost you, if you were going to build them from new, upwards of £50m – and that’s just the build costs. So for any new pharma businesses, for any up and coming research company, to be able to have those facilities available would just be completely impossible – except that they are there.
“These are terrifically accessible, wonderful facilities which are a great place for young pharma companies and others to come and to start and to grow their business – using facilities that money can’t buy. When you get that message you realise that this isn’t just another business park, any other business opening – this is a fantastic story and a great opportunity. I think it is a great opportunity for east London, it’s a great opportunity for Barking and Dagenham – the Borough that’s building more homes in London than any other – and a great symbol of the way the east is opening up in London over the past few years.”
SOG Managing Director John Lewis said: “We have cost-effective world-class facilities, with a wide range of specialist support services, which are ideal for the Life Sciences sector – but we also offer space solutions no matter what industry you work in.”
Mr Lewis added: “From large corporations to SMEs and start-up businesses, Londoneast-uk has space solutions for every requirement. We’re in a great London location, with excellent transport links, and just 15 minutes from the heart of the Capital. Londoneast-uk sits outside of the congestion charge zone with extensive free car parking for resident businesses and visitors. Our Buildings are available for immediate occupation with development plots for new builds.”Mr Lewis said: “We have clean room space for companies needing to operate in a sterile environment. Sterile manufacturing space is built to standards approved by numerous regulatory authorities including the UK, the US and Japan – and it is available NOW offering enormous savings of time and money over new-builds.
“Our office space is competitively priced compared to central London rates with a range of office sizes to suit your business needs. Whether you require a small modular office, a large open-plan space or even a bespoke new building – we can service your needs. We offer the flexibility of signing up to long-term leases or short-term licences. We have fully equipped meeting rooms and conference & events areas for rental – providing small businesses support and back-up normally associated with large corporations.”
Mr Lewis said that importantly businesses locating to Londoneast-uk will benefit from being able to access SOG’s unique technical support services from its sister site in the North West. These include:
- Scientific Glassblowing
- Precision engineering
- Laboratory bespoke design and build
- Health and Safety
- Facilities Management
Mr Lewis added: “Londoneast-uk provides cost-effective solutions in a high-tech environment to enable your business to succeed.”
He also acknowledged the superb support of Sanofi and other key stakeholders to enable the project to proceed and highlighted the important role played by London Borough of Barking and Dagenham and its leader Cllr Darren Rodwell.
Londoneast-uk consists of 17 acres of highly specialist buildings and development plots including laboratories, clean rooms and sterile manufacturing buildings that are available for immediate occupation. SOG Group purchased the facilities from Sanofi following the closure of the firm’s manufacturing plant which ceased operations in 2013. The plant had produced life-saving medicines for nearly 80 years and for the past 20 years had been operating as a specialist oncology centre, producing cancer drugs used by over eight million patients around the world. The retention of the specialist buildings for use by other science-related businesses was a key element of the legacy following the closure.
For more information visit www.londoneast-uk.com