Former airline boss gives £1m to Loughborough start-up hub

New enterprise centre to offer coaching and fellowships

A former airline chief has donated £1m to the creation of an enterprise education centre at Loughborough University.

Lord Glendonbrook, formerly chief executive of BMI, has made the donation in the hope that Loughborough’s new enterprise hub will offer “practical help” to start-up businesspeople in the East Midlands.

The new facility, which will be known as the Glendonbrook Centre for Enterprise, will offer budding entrepreneurs with potentially successful ideas the chance to utilise university equipment, and also provide doctoral fellowships.

Explaining his decision to donate to Loughborough, Glendonbrook told the Times that the university “is well qualified for this kind of activity because of its background and the particular subjects it specialises in.

“It is a university that has always been recognised as being close to the private sector and entrepreneurs.”

Glendonbrook added that, while entrepreneurs can handle many aspects of the business start-up process themselves, “there are really important issues regarding success that can only be provided by a university.

“It’s one thing to be an entrepreneur and another thing to be an entrepreneur who’s well informed. What we’re trying to do is perhaps follow a path that demonstrates that there is real practical advantage and use in having these resources (offered in universities).”

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