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Student Enterprise Incubator: Scion House - an interim evaluation


The Student Enterprise Incubator (SEI), at the University of Stirling, aimed to support student entrepreneurs and increase the success rate of resulting businesses. The evaluation aimed to present: the total financial contribution towards the incubator since 2002; the number of students that have sought the advice from the incubator; the reasons students have not take up an incubator place; the number of student incubators housed since 2002 and the number who have become start-up companies; the perceptions of 5 current incubators; the nature of the student incubators; the scale of student incubators; and any potential economic outcomes.


The methodology consisted of interviews with the project management team and a sample of current incubated ventures.


Finds that marketing generates an average of 350 enquiries per annum with 100 of these going forward to the Enterprise Programme in some format. Observes that SEI has housed 18 start-ups of which 13 continue to trade. Interviewees suggest that without SEI the projects may have gone ahead but not to the same extent or timescale. All of the businesses were in the Service sector. The sample shows that: the combined turnover of the sample had increased by £ 210,000 per annum since entering/leaving the pre-incubator. In terms of benchmarking, finds that the incubator has a survival rate of 72% and the SEI is near UK average. Highlights that the SEI plays a role within the Forth Valley business start-up framework.


Recommends that systems are put in place to record levels and type of contact and enable targeting of future marketing programmes. Market research should be carried out to determine both the reasons for take-up and non take-up. Efforts should be made to publicise successes. Recommends drawing up a statement of intent and a set of objectives and measures for the forthcoming year and beyond, which should be monitored on a quarterly basis. Indicates the potential to roll out the SEI and integrate into the Forth Valley innovation framework. Discuss the levels and types of ‘graduation’ space within Forth Valley.

Author A Half MV Squared Ltd
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Business infrastructure
    Company specific
  • Enterprise
    Entrepreneurship/new firm formation