Rural Enterprise Acceleration

Our KE strategy builds upon our strong links with the local business community and aims to accelerate the establishment and growth of rural enterprises. Our Enterprise Acceleration initiatives are focused both on RAU students and on RAU graduates and the wider growth of local enterprises.

With a strong entrepreneurial focus, we are committed to enhancing the real-life business experiences available to our students. Through the RAU Student Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Programme the RAU provides students with the opportunity to develop their business ideas and receive tailored support. Budding entrepreneurs can benefit from the bountiful knowledge and experience of their lecturers, and the strong industry links the University has carefully cultivated over the years.

Farm491 and its Inspiring Agritech Innovation Programme, provides high-spec facilities created to foster entrepreneurship, the generation of ideas and collaboration – it includes 491 hectares of farmland for research and testing. Farm491 is a space for innovators to develop their businesses by applying technology to growing environments. Farm491 members have access to the business support and knowledge network that includes farmers, investors and expert advisors, as well as open access to farming data. Members can test, refine and expand their propositions. This pioneering new initiative will create a vibrant incubation environment with the potential to influence and benefit the wider Agritech and food production industries. Farm491 plans to assist over 55 new Agritech companies and help them create over 200 new jobs over the next five years.

Farm491 is located within the Royal Agricultural University campus at the recently opened Alliston Centre. This centre is a state of the art incubation hub for Agritech start-ups and also accommodates the Gloucestershire Growth Hub.  

A large number of interesting events are organised by the Farm491 team, take a look at