An innovative company which offers a wide range of marine survey and consultancy services has taken residence at a state of the art Science Park in Argyll.
SAMS Research Services Ltd (SRSL), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), has moved into Malin House at the European Marine Science Park (EMSP) at Dunstaffnage, near Oban.
The ambitious company undertakes significant international work and has offices in United Arab Emirates and Papua New Guinea.
Within its new premises, SRSL has created a technical laboratory to further develop and manufacture the unique device called SIMBA.
SIMBA, which stands for Sea-ice mass balance buoys, enables real-time monitoring of sea-ice cover in polar environments. The SIMBA unit was originally developed to support researchers and is now being developed for commercial users and applications.
Led by Dr Tracy Shimmield, an internationally renowned marine geochemist, the move into Malin House heralds a new growth era for the company. She commented: “SRSL has grown steadily over the last 3 years and the move to Malin House allows room for further expansion. We look forward to welcoming our clients to our new offices and utilising the facilities that the building offers.”
EMSP is owned and managed by economic and community development agency Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).
Douglas Cowan, HIE’s Area Manager for Argyll and the Islands, said: “HIE is delighted to welcome SRSL into Malin House, at the European Marine Science Park. SRSL is joining a growing, thriving entrepreneurial community centred around Oban. It’s fantastic to see the commercialisation of research activity at SAMS, with such wide-ranging industry applications.”
HIE developed the EMSP in order to enable new and expanding companies, as well as inward investors, to locate to the region and further develop the world-class centre of excellence in Marine Science. The Dunstaffnage site is already an internationally recognised centre of excellence for marine science. The site already supports the Scottish Association of Marine Science (SAMS), an academic partner of the University of the Highlands and Islands and the European Centre for Marine Biotechnology, which offers incubation space for start-up companies.
The 20,000 sq ft of office and laboratory space at EMSP will support businesses in Scotland's growing Life Sciences and Energy sectors and has the potential to support up to 125 jobs.
Benefits to the business community of being located at the EMSP include increased access to research, opportunities for knowledge exchange and the wider benefits of being part of a significant cluster of international expertise.
In August 2010, the HIE Board approved an investment of £7.5m to create this first phase of the Park. HIE contributed £4.5m of its own grant-in-aid budget from the Scottish Government, and attracted the remaining £3m towards this first phase from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
In May this year, Argyll-based Xanthella Ltd became the first tenant of Malin House. Xanthella develops photobioreactors (PBR) for use in scalable form for growing microalgae for research and industrial production of high value products such as cosmetics, nutraceuticals and medicines.
To find out more about the European Marine Science Park, please visit: www.hie.co.uk/europeanmarinesciencepark
To find out more about SRSL, visit: http://www.samsrsl.co.uk/