Annual Review 2020

Highlighting the activities of Oxford University Innovation

CEO/COO Overview

Matt Perkins, Chief Executive Officer, and Adam Stoten, Chief Operating Officer, have led OUI during one of the most turbulent periods in its history.

At one end of the scale, they have been stewards of the Oxford Boom, which continues to deliver with 19 new companies created and $1bn in external funding raised by the portfolio last year, and just recently welcomed Oxford’s 200th spinout, PhishAR, to the family. At the other, they have worked with colleagues to help address the unique challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and marshal the research outputs of the world’s number one university into real world solutions aiding in the fight against the disease.

Integrity, Collaboration and Empowerment

“OUI’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is testament to the resilience, passion and commitment of our staff,” said Matt Perkins. “Collectively, we have sought to inculcate a culture that embraces our company values of integrity, collaboration and empowerment, and in unprecedented times such as the last year, it has been heartening to see our colleagues displaying these values daily and overcoming adversity without losing momentum.”

“I am very proud how colleagues across the company have stepped up to support the University’s effort on COVID-19,” added Adam Stoten. “Since the pandemic began, we have witnessed a surge in demand for support from colleagues in Licensing and Ventures, who have helped academics developing COVID-19-related technologies such as world-leading vaccines, novel diagnostics and low-cost ventilators. COVID-19 specific activity has also figured prominently in our Consulting Services and Investments groups, while our business support groups – Operations, Marketing, Finance and HR – have not only kept the OUI machinery running during lockdown, but have ensured the transition to remote working has been as painless as possible.

As a consequence, when discussing this review, Matt and Adam were keen to take a break from our traditional focus on the impacts of our work, and tell the stories of the people who make OUI the place it is.

Passion for positive change

“We’re really fortunate here at OUI to be surrounded by intelligent and creative people who have a genuine passion for creating positive change – much like the academics who we support,” said Adam. “This stretches across the whole organisation, from our colleagues negotiating the deals that make the headlines to those working behind the scenes to make OUI run smoothly.”

“With this review we recognise our colleagues who live and breathe the OUI culture,” said Matt. “We are sure that our external readers, both in the University and beyond, will appreciate the stories we present in our Annual Review 2020. First and foremost, this review celebrates the OUI colleagues who enable the University’s world-leading research to achieve real world impact.”

Nigel Keen, Chairman of Oxford University Innovation’s board, also paid tribute to the work of OUI.

“The OUI board is pleased to see the company is continuing to deliver a consistently high quality of service to the academics of Oxford University, despite the challenges the year has presented. More specifically, the company has adapted at pace to utilising remote working techniques while maintaining outputs that match or even exceed previous years. It is my ambition that OUI will continue to work with the researcher base at the same level over the coming twelve months, and the Board supports Matt and Adam’s plan to deliver that ambition.”

Chas Bountra, Pro Vice Chancellor for Innovation at Oxford University, has a strong vision for the future of innovation at Oxford, and sees OUI’s work as central to making it a reality.

“What we have here at Oxford is truly unique. Record growth of our spinout family. Exponential increases in investment and talent coming in. A whole community waking up to the opportunity our innovation represents, and actors across the Oxfordshire region, both in the University and beyond, committed to making it happen. OUI’s vision of creating a world leading ecosystem with Oxford University at its heart is shared by many, and not even COVID-19 will stop us from realising it. I congratulate OUI on its resilience, its integrity and its ingenuity in this time, and look forward to working with the team on delivering an Oxford of the future.”

With this review we recognise our colleagues who live and breathe the OUI culture.

Matt Perkins

We’re really fortunate here at OUI to be surrounded by intelligent and creative people who have a genuine passion for creating positive change.

Adam Stoten