FTSE 100 Company Chair Appointed to Norwich Research Park

6 March 2013

Anthony Habgood has been appointed as Chair of Norwich Research Partners LLP from 1 April 2013. The appointment will provide strong strategic guidance to the partnership during development of the Norwich Research Park, Europe’s leading centre for research in food, health and the environment.

Building on the £26M investment from the Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council (BBSRC) to deliver innovation from the research base and generate economic growth and job creation, the new role will help to realise the potential of the Park as an engine for growth for the UK.

As current Chair of two FTSE 100 companies, Reed Elsevier and Whitbread, Anthony Habgood brings extensive business experience that will strengthen connections with stakeholders and create strong links between the research community and UK industry. His distinguished 7 year tenure as a Senior Independent Director of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which ends in March this year, means that he also brings valuable local knowledge of the Norwich Research Park.

Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said: "Norwich Research Park is a world-class science facility. It has benefitted from significant government investment to help bring together the research base and business to drive growth and create jobs. Anthony Habgood will bring vital business experience to the Park, building on its success and driving forward ambitious plans for the future."

Anthony Habgood said: “The Norwich Research Park represents a huge potential opportunity for Norwich and the UK to build and attract new business and innovation links with the outstanding research on the Park. I am looking forward to the exciting challenge of helping to create an internationally recognised research and business hub built around the Norwich Research Park’s core research strengths and capabilities in the life sciences.”

Professor Edward Acton, University of East Anglia Vice-Chancellor and Interim Chair of Norwich Research Partners LLP said: “With four outstanding research institutes cradled between one of the UK’s world-class universities and one of its major university hospitals, the co-location on the Park is without parallel. Greater Norwich has made it the focal point of the City Deal for which Ministers have just given the green light. Anthony Habgood brings precisely the acumen and international business profile needed to make the most of this golden opportunity.”

Norwich Research Partners LLP serves the interests of the Partners by promoting Norwich Research Park and developing it as a commercial destination for companies in the appropriate sectors. It brings together three research institutes strategically funded by BBSRC (the John Innes Centre, the Institute of Food Research and The Genome Analysis Centre) with the John Innes Foundation, The Sainsbury Laboratory, the University of East Anglia and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and the BBSRC.


Anthony Habgood

Anthony Habgood is Chairman of Reed Elsevier and Whitbread.

His other appointments include Chairman of Preqin Ltd, Senior Independent Director of Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and Visiting Fellow at Oxford University.

A graduate in economics from Cambridge University with an MS in Industrial Administration from Carnegie Mellon University, he joined Boston Consulting Group in 1970 and became a Director in 1977. Having worked in Boston, Tokyo, Munich and London he became Managing Partner of BCG Ltd in London and a member of the Executive Committee of BCG Inc from 1981-1986.

He joined Tootal Group plc in 1986, becoming Chief Executive in 1991. He became Chief Executive of Bunzl plc in 1991, subsequently becoming Chairman (1996-2009). He was appointed Chairman of Whitbread plc in 2005 and of Reed Elsevier plc and Reed Elsevier NV in 2009.

Past non-executive directorships include Geest plc, NatWest Bank plc, Powergen plc, Marks and Spencer plc and SVG Capital plc. He was also Chairman of Mölnlycke Health Care Ltd while it was owned by the private equity house APAX Partners. In 2006 he was the winner of the Daily Telegraph Award for a Decade of Business Excellence at the National Business Awards.

Norwich Research Park investment

In 2011, the Government awarded BBSRC £26M to invest in Norwich Research Park to deliver innovation from the research base and generate economic growth and job creation.

The investment will help to create and support new companies and jobs based on world-leading bioscience.

Developments to the Park include:

•  New Centrum building and commercial space
•  New Enterprise Centre 
•  Enhancements to the Innovation Centre 
•  Improvements to the car parks, lighting, roads and IT infrastructure 
•  Improvements to the highways around the Park 
•  The addition of low-cost commercial space

About Norwich Research Park

The Norwich Research Park is a partnership between the University of East Anglia, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, four independent world-renowned research institutes namely the John Innes Centre, Institute of Food Research and The Genome Analysis Centre (all strategically funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)) and The Sainsbury Laboratory linked to the Gatsby Charitable Foundation. The BBSRC is itself a partner as is the John Innes Foundation.

The vision of the Norwich Research Park partners and local government stakeholders is to develop a thriving science and innovation business park over the next decade by supporting spin-out and start-up companies and through attracting inward investment from large corporate organisations involved in science and technology.

The Norwich Research Park is home to around 30 science and IT based businesses. With over 11,000 people including 2,700 scientists, the Norwich Research Park is Europe’s leading centre for research in food, health and the environment.

The Norwich Research Park partner websites are:

•  University of East Anglia www.uea.ac.uk 
•  Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital www.nnuh.nhs.uk 
•  John Innes Centre www.jic.ac.uk 
•  Institute of Food Research www.ifr.ac.uk 
•  The Genome Analysis Centre www.tgac.ac.uk 
•  The Sainsbury Laboratory www.tsl.ac.uk 
•  Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Centre www.bbsrc.ac.uk 
•  John Innes Foundation www.johninnesfoundation.org.uk


BBSRC invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public. Their aim is to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond.

Funded by Government, and with an annual budget of around £500M (2012-2013), they support research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people they fund are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Their investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.

For more information about BBSRC strategically funded institutes see: www.bbsrc.ac.uk/institutes