What we're about

We support small business owners, entrepreneurs and inventors like you. Our team are on hand all day, six days a week, to help you take the right steps to start up, protect and grow your business.

Develop your ideas with our market research and company databases, learn new skills at a workshop or mini-masterclass, have a confidential one-to-one and put your questions to some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs at our inspiring talks.

If you’re an ambitious business owner, with plans to scale-up, we also offer £10,000 worth of free support through our Innovating for Growth programme. Or if you want specialised start-up support we have a programme for that too.

What’s more we have 13 National Network Centres around the UK - so visit us today and increase your chances of business success.

Visit bl.uk/business-and-ip-centre for further information.

Upcoming events (5+)

FREE: Coffee Morning at the Business & IP Centre

British Library Business & IP Centre

Meet, network and find out more… Have you always wondered how the Business & IP Centre can help you turn your business idea into a reality, but weren’t really sure where to start? With a collection of commercial data and intellectual property resources worth over £5 million and 20+ workshops and one-to-ones taking place each week, it can be difficult to know how to get started when it comes to using the Centre to find answers to your business questions. That’s why we’ve launched a new series of Coffee Mornings designed to give you the opportunity to meet the team, ask questions, find out about upcoming events, make connections with other entrepreneurs and find out how you can use the Centre to give your business the best possible chance of success. Coffee Mornings take place on the last Friday of every month and are free to attend. To sign up, click here: http://bit.ly/2QL6wOe Refreshments will be provided.

FREE: Introduction to using the Business & IP Centre

British Library Business & IP Centre

Find out how the Business & IP Centre can help you achieve business success. The Business & IP Centre is a first step to business success. Our Centre offers access to a comprehensive collection of business and intellectual property information sources, as well as practical workshops, one-to-one advice sessions and inspiring talks which can help you make informed decisions about the development of your business ideas. In this free workshop we provide a practical introduction to these essential resources, events and activities and tell you how they can be most effectively applied to meet the needs of your business. And ultimately help you achieve success. The workshop is two hours long, followed by networking and refreshments. To sign up, click here: http://bit.ly/2GbdgQK

FREE: How do I protect a business idea?

British Library Business & IP Centre

Learn how intellectual property can protect you and help you profit from your business idea. An understanding of intellectual property and its protection is vital for anyone with an idea, whether it’s a business, an invention, a brand name or a song. This session will introduce the four areas of intellectual property and help you understand which ones may apply to you and your business. The session provides a basic introduction to patents, trade marks, registered designs and copyright and provides a foundation to our ‘Mini-Masterclass’ series. This workshop is two hours long, during which you will have the opportunity to ask our expert staff your questions, and will be followed by networking and refreshments. To sign up, click here: http://bit.ly/2G5VUEH

FREE Inventors’ Club

British Library Business & IP Centre

Join us for our new Inventors’ Club series, designed to help you refine, protect and commercialise that new product idea you’ve been tinkering with. Great ideas can change the world! However, whilst lots of us often spot the potential for a new product or piece of technology, the harsh realities of research and development, prototyping, manufacturing and distribution often mean that few of those ideas actually make it to market. The Inventors’ Club has been established by the Business & IP Centre to give budding inventors the opportunity to network with others in the same boat, hear from speakers who have successfully commercialised their inventions, stay motivated and share insider hints, tips, expertise and experience. You’ll get feedback on your inventions in a safe, non-judgemental environment and also find out about how the Library’s extensive collection of business and commercial data can help you on your journey from someone with a great idea, to having a product on the market. The running order is as follows: 18.00 - 18.15 Registrations and networking 18.15 - 18.25 Introductions 18.25 - 19.15 Inventor Presentation Tim Brennan is the inventor of Vivobarefoot, a shoe that he created as a student in 2001 whilst studying Industrial Design Engineering at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College. After graduation, he successfully licensed his product to a shoe manufacturer owned and run by the Clarks family. We look forward to Tim sharing his valuable experiences with us as there is much to learn and to discuss. 19.15 – 19.30 Feedback Session Lizzie Wennell is a creative designer, developing her brand 18.ten which is a range of innovative products made in stainless steel. She will be describing her journey, and seeking feedback on her products, on her future products and her marketing approach. More details on www.18ten.co.uk 19.30 - 20.30 Networking and refreshments Please note that the purpose of the British Library Inventors' Club is primarily networking, expertise-sharing and introductions. The environment is public and open, and must not be regarded as confidential or IP protected. However, the Business & IP Centre do provide a range of support services to help inventors understand and protect their Intellectual Property including: one-to-one information sessions, an ‘Inventor in Residence’ and workshops on IP. More information in these services can be found on our website. The Inventors’ Club is brought to you by the Business & IP Centre in collaboration with: Bob Lindsey – a chartered Engineer with a wide experience of marketing and business management, who has spent over twenty years advising entrepreneurs and small businesses on getting their new products to market. He was part of the team which set up the Inventors’ Club at Kingston University in 2005, and he regularly runs Innovation Clinics at the British Library. Mark Sheahan – the Founder and Owner of Compgen Ltd and Culgen Ltd and the Chairman at Morgan Goodwin Ltd. He has been a value collaborator of the Business & IP Centre for over 13 years as the British Library’s Inventor in Residence, helping over 1,000 aspiring innovators with their inventions. Barry Slayford – the inventor of the Arson-Proof Letterbox and founder of the Croydon Inventors’ Club. He also set up the Invention Centre at South Norwood to assist entrepreneurs to get their new product ideas to market. He can advise on all parts of the journey from initial idea to market launch. To book your space, visit our website: http://bit.ly/2FkxoyP

Past events (101)

FREE Webinar: Introduction to Lean Start-Up

British Library Business & IP Centre

Photos (76)

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