A £1.25 million project which aims to attract high- tech knowledge-based and innovative companies to Stafford was launched yesterday.
The purpose-built e2 Stafford Business Village on Staffordshire Technology Park has been led by Staffordshire University and supported by Staffordshire County Council, Stafford SRB6 and the Business Innovation Centre.
A delegation of British Council dignitaries opened the newly constructed village, which comprises 40 business units, as part of a five-day programme designed to recognise enterprising universities and transfer knowledge.
Prof Peter Ogrodnik, enterprise director of commercial planning and resources, said: "The complete business package that each unit provides enables small fledgling companies to start and flourish with minimum capital investment.
"With rates starting at £375 per month it is well within the reach of most start- up businesses."
He said: "The building is physically a part of the university's Beaconside campus and proximity to the resources available in engineering, computing and health make this an ideal access point to the university's expertise."
Chris Birch, Staffordshire University professor of enterprise, said: "The facility will provide employment opportunities by attracting innovative companies to the area as well as encouraging our enterprising graduates to set up their own business ventures."
The British Council delegation, which included representatives from universities in Africa and Eastern Europe, also toured Staffordshire University's New Technologies Centre in Stafford.
Prof Ogrodnik, who was instrumental in arranging the visit, said: "The British Council is visiting particularly enterprising universities to see how they support entrepreneurial activity in the non-traditional areas."