MSP toasts strong year as development gathers pace

Manchester Science Partnerships, the public-private collaboration between universities, councils and developer Bruntwood, reported net worth of £35.6m in the year to the end of September 2014, as the value of the portfolio rose 31% and shareholders increased capital.

The latest accounts, filled but not published yet at Companies House, will show pre-tax profit was up 40% on the year at £1m. Net worth, or owners’ equity, increased from £17.8m to £35.6m. During the year the company, majority owned by Bruntwood, issued £9.5m in new capital to fund the acquisition of Alderley Park in Cheshire from AstraZeneca.

Occupier vacancy across MSP passed 95% and on the development front work began on tripling the size of its core Corridor campus at Oxford Road, starting with a 70,000 sq ft building on site now, designed by BDP and being built by Worthingtons. Biomedical workspace centre Citylabs 1.0 opened last autumn, designed by Sheppard Robson and built by Lend Lease.

During the period MSP added new shareholders Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Cheshire East Council. The other shareholders are University of Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester and Salford City Councils.

Next month, MSP said it will launch a £40m Greater Manchester and Cheshire East Life Sciences Fund, backed by MSP, Bruntwood, Cheshire East Council and Local Enterprise Partnerships.

Chris Oglesby, chairman of MSP and chief executive of Bruntwood, said: “The growth and development of MSP, in tandem with the work we are planning for the former BBC site and our vision for Alderley Park, will be truly transformational for the life sciences, digital and materials science sectors in the North of England and further drive investment and innovation. Through working in partnership with industry, academia and the NHS the right environment for investment, growth and discovery in science can be fostered. More than ever, MSP is relevant to the growth of the city region, helping to strengthen Manchester’s position as the economic engine of the Northern Powerhouse and the model of city growth, through its creation of places and support infrastructures needed for technology and life science companies to flourish.”

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