University supports launch of new Innovation Labs in Kuala Lumpur

20 March 2024
Time to read
5 minute read
A photo of desks and sofas in the new Malaysia Innovation Labs
The Innovation Labs at UiTM

Entrepreneurs and start-ups in Malaysia will benefit from ongoing advice and support thanks to a new partnership between the University of Suffolk, Innovation Labs UK and Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM).

The Institute of Business Excellence (IBE) at UiTM officially launched the Innovation Labs: Business Sustainability in Kuala Lumpur with a special event attended by academics, PhD students, industry leaders and government officials.

It represents a development in the University of Suffolk’s partnership with both the Innovation Labs and UiTM. The Atrium at the University of Suffolk’s Ipswich campus is home to the Ipswich Innovation Labs, while Suffolk’s partnership with UiTM announced last summer includes staff and student study and research opportunities and knowledge exchange activities.

The Innovation Labs will support start-up businesses and entrepreneurs, and promote innovation in the realm of sustainability, including provision of hot desk space, and networking opportunities from UiTM’s Business Engagement and Knowledge Exchange team to provide resources, expert guidance and support services.

Professor Gurpreet Jagpal, Pro Vice-Chancellor Business and Entrepreneurship at the University of Suffolk, said: “The Innovation Labs: Business Sustainability provides a great opportunity to foster the talents in Malaysia of emerging entrepreneurs and start-up businesses, as well as a chance to expand the international reach of the successful Innovation Labs programme in Suffolk. We are sure that entrepreneurs will really benefit from the support the Labs will bring by providing access to new market opportunities.

“In addition, the opportunities the Student Mobility Program will bring for learners at both UiTM and the University of Suffolk will be significant, and we look forward to the first exchanges on this programme in the summer.”

UiTM’s Associate Professor Dr Wan Edura Wan Rashid, visionary behind the creation of an Innovation Labs facility in Kuala Lumpur, said: “I am thrilled about the prospects this collaboration with the University of Suffolk offers. Our goal is to cultivate a vibrant ecosystem for entrepreneurship and innovation, providing invaluable resources and opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs in Malaysia.

“Through the Student Mobility Program, we aim to facilitate enriching exchanges between UiTM and the University of Suffolk, fostering cross-cultural learning and expanding horizons for students. Together, we aspire to drive positive change and create a sustainable future through innovation.”

The new Innovation Labs in Malaysia also mark the first international expansion of the Innovation Labs network in Suffolk.

Alongside the facility at the University of Suffolk, its network currently features locations in Stowmarket and Sudbury.

Peter Basford, Co-founder of the Innovation Labs Group, said: “We are very excited to be partnering with the University of Suffolk with this new Innovation Lab in Malaysia. We have established premises across Suffolk and are expanding in 2024 to Norfolk, but this partnership takes us on to the international stage.

“Innovation is happening everywhere and through this partnership we want to build links internationally with the transfer of students between our sites in Ipswich and Kuala Lumpur to help them gain wider insight and see the opportunities that are available for them on a much larger scale.

“We look forward to a long and successful partnership and look forward to welcoming Malaysia entrepreneurs to the Ipswich Innovation Lab soon.”

Last year a consortium of the University of Suffolk, UiTM and Change School secured £55,000 in British Council grant funding in collaboration with the Malaysia Ministry of Higher Education to promote access to Higher Education in Malaysia, while Suffolk and UiTM also signed a memorandum of understanding to increase partnership working such as staff exchange programmes and study and research placements for undergraduates and postgraduates.

A further £30,000 from the British Council in Malaysia was awarded in November to facilitate collaborative online learning activities with students at both universities, and plans for an in-person exchange programme for students will include cultural activities and mini-internships.

The grant funds work under the title of ‘Building Sustainable Futures and Businesses through Students: Future Leaders Cultural Exchange’ and runs from December last year through to March 2025.

Professor Gurpreet Jagpal addressing the audience for the launch of the UiTM Innovation Labs
Professor Gups Jagpal from the University of Suffolk
Staff at UiTM and representatives from the University of Suffolk at the launch of the Innovation Labs: Business Sustainability in Kuala Lumpur
The Innovation Labs: Business Sustainability launch at UiTM
The new Innovation Labs at UiTM
The new Innovation Labs at UiTM
The new Innovation Labs at UiTM
The new Innovation Labs at UiTM

For press enquiries, please contact: