Entrepreneurship - unlocking potential

Our mission is to develop leaders in technology and management, and we support entrepreneurs on every step of their journey at Cranfield University. We empower them to reach their full potential by providing an epicentre for entrepreneurial activity, bringing together like minded-people and providing them with all the tools they need to bring their ideas to life.

The Cranfield family

We bring management experts together with technical people with the brightest ideas, and we welcome investors, mentors and industry specialists. So whether you’re a student looking to start-up their own business, a seasoned entrepreneur looking to take advantage of Cranfield’s world-class entrepreneurship programmes and technical facilities, or an investor seeking the best ideas and the brightest minds, Cranfield can help you access the resources you need. At Cranfield you’ll part of a unique network that enables business ideas to go from conception to super-growth.

At Cranfield entrepreneurs can access:

  • Incubation co-workspace, workshops, and offices with flexible low-cost terms encourage interactions with like-minded and highly motivated fellow entrepreneurs
  • Entrepreneurial skills development courses and events from the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship
  • Business and technical mentors, drawn from Cranfield’s alumni network and industry partners
  • Academic expertise in disciplines including aerospace, aviation, manufacturing, design, cleantech and security
  • Networking and industry-specific events and lectures to facilitate knowledge sharing and networking opportunities with a  nation-wide networks
  • A world-class technology demonstration and maturation environment, including R&D, airport facilities, rapid prototyping, and design expertise
  • Support with funding and exposure to investors (pre-seed, seed, series A and grant funding)

Many of our students go on to form highly successful businesses and at Cranfield we give you the support you need to get started. Here are some case studies that show you where Cranfield can take you

Networking events for businesses

At Cranfield we run a range of networking events that growing businesses can benefit from attending.

Venture day - a one-day annual conference and networking event and a great opportunity for entrepreneurs and innovative individuals to come together for a day of networking, music, entertainment and enterprise.

Wednesday Business: Enterprise Talks - a programme featuring leading entrepreneurs who will take you through their journey and the challenges they faced whilst growing their business. These inspiring talks also provide the opportunity to network with individuals who share your interest in entrepreneurship.

Research & Development Breakfast seminars - Join us for breakfast and networking to learn about funding opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the SEMLEP region, how SMEs from key industrial sectors can access funding to develop new technology, processes and services to support growth and innovation, and much more. Contact Cranfield Technology Park to book onto the next session.

and many more events.

For growing businesses

Business Growth Programme - This programme provides owner-managers with a unique opportunity for you to step back from the day-to-day demands of running your business and develop a comprehensive strategy and plan for the future.

Growth in the green economy - IMAGE (Innovation in Manufacturing, Aerospace and Green Economy) is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and helps SMEs in the South East Midlands area grow through research and innovation.

Incubation and acceleration

Cranfield University Business Incubation Centre (CUBIC) - We can provide the perfect setting for your fledgling company, with advanced technology and management expertise right on your doorstep. Being in a hub of innovation on our campus will be invaluable for your business, both in its formative stages and during growth.

Events for our students

Our students benefit from a wide range of engaging events at Cranfield to help develop the budding entrepreneur such as:

Idea to Innovation (i2i) - a workshop that began life as Enterprisers. It has run over 30 times since its inception for PhD communities, early career researchers and mid managers from the private and public sector.

Start-up Weekends - High energy weekends where you'll learn about ideas from across the campus, build interim teams and thrash out ideas so that we can help you find viable business opportunities.

Wednesday Business: Enterprise Talks - throughout this programme you will hear from leading entrepreneurs who will take you through their journey and the challenges they faced whilst growing their businesses.

Social Venture Challenge Weekend - you will work in teams competing against each other in this weekend to develop a solution to a challenge set by a charity or a company, in an attempt to make a real difference to the world.

Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards - if you have a great business idea and can write a convincing business plan about it you could be in with a chance of representing Cranfield and competing in the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards. The prizes for successful candidates are £25,000, mentoring, brand management, website design and hosting.

and many more events.


Thought leadership

Thought Leadership - Our academics regularly lend their voices as commentators on the global news agenda, reinforcing their expertise on matters affecting business and society.

Research degrees - The Cranfield PhD and the Executive DBA, will equip you with the skills you need to make an impact in your chosen field.

Doctoral opportunities - current opportunities at the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship.