Liverpool-based innovation hub Sensor City is to provide London-headquatered consumer giant Unilever with a package of technical and business support over the next two years, as part of a joint commitment to drive innovation within Liverpool City Region.
Sensor City has secured a two-year extension of their corporate membership deal with brand.
The agreement will see Sensor City, based in the Knowledge Quarter Liverpool (KQ Liverpool) Mayoral Development Zone, deliver support to the global FMCG producer, comprising of technical project delivery, facilitated access to student and academic researchers and collaborative engagement opportunities.
Louise Goodman, Business and Innovations Manager at Sensor City, said: “We are delighted to be continuing our relationship with Unilever and building on the proven value that our engineers and business support teams can offer.
“Working with high profile companies like Unilever adds another dimension to our dynamic business community and we look forward to supporting Unilever’s innovation agenda over the next two years.”
Unilever’s package of support will be delivered through a call on/call off package, which will ensure a rapid response to new opportunities for innovation and provide agility to meet the demands of Unilever’s business objectives, as they evolve over the coming months.
The initial framework of activity will focus on access to Liverpool City Region’s student and academic talent, integration into the local start-up ecosystem and collaboration opportunities with Sensor City’s partner universities.
Additionally, technical support through Sensor City’s multi-disciplinary engineering team and their £1m laboratory facilities will provide Unilever with access to rapid prototyping and creative R&D capabilities.
Helen Brannon, Research and Development Manager at Unilever, said: “Our membership of Sensor City enables us access to rapid prototyping facilities, potential collaborations with SME companies hosted at Sensor City as well as access to future talent through potential projects with the students of Sensor City.
Sensor City’s ongoing relationship with Unilever extends back to 2017, when the innovation hub ran a two day Hack and Pitch event, with Innovate UK, to find new approaches and solutions for three packaging challenges set by Unilever’s Advanced Manufacturing Centre in Port Sunlight, Wirral.
Over the next 24 months, Sensor City plan to support the connection of Unilever’s research priorities to student project opportunities, within both the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University.