Tue, 21 September, 2021
The Welding Institute (TWI) is positioned to invest up to £100 million in our global capabilities, technologies, resources and people to benefit our Professional and Industrial Members.
TWI spearheaded the creation of Granta Park at its headquarters in Cambridge, UK. The science, technology and biopharmaceutical park based on the bank of the River Granta in Great Abington near Cambridge, houses businesses such as Illumina and Astra Zeneca as well as TWI’s operations.
To facilitate the growth strategy of TWI, and enable the delivery of much needed laboratory and office space in the region, the TWI Executive determined to release a 27-acre plot of land, with planning consent, on the Granta Park estate to BioMed Realty, a Blackstone portfolio company.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said, “This investment is hugely welcome news for Cambridge and the UK as a whole. The city was home to some of the country’s greatest scientific discoveries and I’m confident that the support of Blackstone’s BioMed Realty will mean there are many more to come. The jobs created by this investment are exactly the kind we want to see more of in the UK – high-skilled and future-facing, reflecting what the UK does best.”
This strategic move, which was facilitated with the help of Bidwells and Mills & Reeve, positions TWI to meet our growth ambitions and service offerings to our global Members.
By investing in technology and expertise, TWI can continue to deliver world-class, innovative research and development, providing solutions for global industry, to enhance the training business and to underpin the strategic plans for global professional membership.
As a result, the Executive Team have ensured that TWI can keep pace with the needs of our Members, as Chief Executive Aamir Khalid explained, “TWI will invest up to £100m into our staff, laboratories and technology for the benefit of our Industrial and Professional Members. We have been a technology company for 75 years and technology is at the heart of TWI.”
The Chair of TWI’s Council, Humbert Mozzi said, “It is a great privilege for me to chair this wonderful team at TWI. Through the team's hard work, we have achieved remarkable results within the technology sector. We have, today, sold a piece of land within our portfolio, which is not core to our business. However, through this sale, we are able to rewrite the future that lies ahead of us at TWI and allow us to invest the proceeds of a non-core asset into core business strategies, both nationally and internationally. I now challenge the team at TWI to lift the bar once again and achieve new heights in our core business."
This announcement is good news for the region as the doubling of BioMed’s life sciences real estate in Cambridge will support the creation of up to 2,700 new jobs. As the birthplace of stem cell research and artificial intelligence, Cambridge is the largest life sciences market in the UK, an epicentre of research and innovation, and contains more labs than anywhere else in Britain. The life sciences sector in the UK supports 250,000 jobs and contributes over £70 billion to the GDP each year.
Blackstone and BioMed have a track record of delivering sustainable buildings that minimise energy and water consumption, champion local sustainable transport initiatives and encourage investment from business into the local economy, meaning that this land sale will benefit the local area too.
Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Dr Nik Johnson said, “I’ve worked as an NHS children’s doctor in Cambridgeshire for many years and I’ve always followed closely the pioneering life sciences sector right on our doorstep. Ours in an innovation economy, and the recent work of AstraZeneca on the Covid vaccine underlines why this sector is of national importance.
“Our life sciences cluster is among the world’s best, but we can’t take it for granted. We have rivals both nationally and internationally. Both Oxford and London are growing faster, and internationally, and we want Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to remain a destination of choice for investment in this sector.
“TWI is itself one of the region’s most innovative companies and we have a good working relationship with them. We advised them on the potential of their site to support the further growth of the life sciences cluster and it is great that they have made the decision to open up this opportunity at Granta Park.
“Growth in this sector will create around 2,700 highly skilled, technical jobs locally and help keep life our sciences cluster at the cutting edge, driving our economy for decades to come.”
We look forward to keeping you updated with our investment plans over the coming months. For further press information, please email: Thomas.Clover@TWI.co.uk