NORIBIC, the Northern Ireland Business and Innovation Centre, is a not-for-profit EU BIC (Business and Innovation Centre). Incorporated in 1986 as a company limited by guarantee, NORIBIC’s aims are to encourage innovation and business growth in SMEs across Northern Ireland and beyond. It does this through developing and delivering its own bespoke business support programmes and through managing and delivering third party business support programmes. Since 2002, NORIBIC has delivered over £7m of business support programmes and activities across Northern Ireland to over 2,500 companies as well as hosting a series of national and international conferences on innovation and entrepreneurship.
Major highlights in NORIBIC’s recent career were the development and delivery of Northern Ireland’s Innovating Region of Europe Programme in 2007/8 – a £2.6m portfolio of innovation support programmes supporting 675 businesses west of the Bann through 8 separate innovation programmes; iFactory – a £1.7m intensive innovation mentoring programme funded through INTERREG IVa that provided 13,000 hours of one-to-one support to 150 businesses across Northern Ireland and the six border counties between 2010 and 2014, and the European BIC Network 22nd Annual Congress Congress, hosted by NORIBIC in Derry in May 2013 that attracted 650 delegates from 34 countries with headline speaker Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple.
NORIBIC is Northern Ireland’s largest provider of business mentoring support. In the last three years, NORIBIC has provided over 13000 hours of mentoring to over 850 SMEs across Northern Ireland. NORIBIC is located on the Derry Campus of the North West Regional College (NWRC). NORIBIC has a business incubator located on campus – Digital Media Works - that provides business start-up support for entrepreneurs in the digital creative sector. NORIBIC is currently developing an Entrepreneurship Strategy for NWRC to encourage and enhance entrepreneurship within the College. This will be aligned to an expansion of the incubation support into different sectors.