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21 April, 2020 - 11:04 By Tony Quested

Sphere Fluidics receives Queen’s Award for Enterprise

Cambridge’s Sphere Fluidics, commercialising single cell analysis systems underpinned by its patented picodroplet technology, has won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Innovation. 

The award recognises the company’s excellence in patenting, developing and globally commercialising single cell analysis systems for biotherapeutic discovery. It is one of 27 Queen’s Awards won by East of England companies – 14 for international trade, eight for innovation, two for promoting opportunity and three for sustainable development. This region accounts for more than 12 per cent of the awards announced for the whole of the UK.

Sphere Fluidics leads the glory trail for the Cambridge science & technology cluster. Adder Technology, SciBite, Anglian Water Services, Cambridge Healthcare Research and James & James Fulfilment are other winners either based in Cambridge or started here.

Using its state-of-the-art picodroplet technology, Sphere Fluidics develops and commercialises novel, single cell analysis systems for the rapid screening and characterisation of single cells to enable leading edge research and accelerate biopharmaceutical discovery and development. 

The company’s flagship product is the multi-award winning, Cyto-Mine® System which integrates isolation, selective screening, sorting, and imaging into a single automated platform to streamline workflows, reduce costs, improve throughput and enable high-value cells to be captured in a single run.

Sphere Fluidics spun out from the University of Cambridge in 2010 and now employs 31 people.

Dr Frank Craig, CEO, Sphere Fluidics, said: “We are immensely proud to have our pioneering approach to single cell analysis recognised with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise. 

“This is a testament to the hard work and expertise of our dedicated team who have a deep understanding of the challenges faced by researchers in drug discovery, therapeutics and diagnostics.

“Sphere Fluidics’ technology is specifically designed to increase the chances of finding that rare molecule or cell that could lead to a life-changing medicine. 

“Our systems help make the development of new biopharmaceuticals faster and more cost-effective, improve monoclonal antibody screening, cell line development, and overall efficiency to help accelerate research into new therapeutic modalities. Our technology is highly innovative and is covered by 148 international patents and 18 trademarks.”

Sphere Fluidics is one of 220 organisations nationally to be recognised with a Queen’s Award, now in its 54th year.

Adder Technology, a specialist in connectivity solutions and high performance IP KVM, has won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for excellence in International Trade. 

Cambridge-based Adder designs and manufacturers market-leading high performance connectivity solutions that are distributed globally via an expanding network of distributors, resellers, and system integrators to over 60 countries.

This award follows Adder’s previous commendations by the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in 2001 and 2014, for International Trade and Innovation, respectively. Now in their 54th year, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are deemed the most prestigious business awards in the UK.

Founded in 1984 by current CEO Adrian Dickens, Adder is a global pioneer and leader in the design and manufacture of innovative enterprise technology that enables users to securely access and control computers from anywhere in the world via a standard IP network. 

The core technology, known as KVM (keyboard, video and mouse), is used around the world by customers across multiple industries – from pro-AV, broadcasting, and post-production, to command and control, and industrial process automation. 

In order to support its growing network of partners and customers around the world, Adder has established offices in key locations throughout Asia, Europe and the Americas.

Adrian Dickens, founder and CEO of Adder, says, “We are extremely proud to win another Queen’s Award – this time recognising our International Trade efforts. 

“Earlier in the year, we were delighted to announce a multi-million dollar investment to support our global expansion, and I consider this accolade as an acknowledgement of the fantastic work undertaken by the team at Adder. 

“This award will surely add to the momentum of the organisation’s growth as it reinforces our commitment to improving the connectivity needs of our customers.”

Adder started 2020 at pace with the announcement of a multi-million dollar global expansion, two successful product launches, the introduction of a 24/7 Elite Professional Service program and inclusion in the Sunday Times HSBC International Track 200, all within the first three months.

Management at Global Graphics Software

Global Graphics Software, a leading Cambridge developer of technology for digital printing, has also been honoured with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise.

The Cambourne company has been recognised for its excellence in innovation; the award recognises the development of ScreenPro™, an application that dramatically improves the speed and quality of inkjet printing making it possible for a wider number of goods – such as ceramic tiles, wall coverings and packaging – to be produced.

Justin Bailey, managing director of Global Graphics Software, said: “This accolade recognises their innovation and creative energy. I’m sure that, among the many other benefits to the business, this award will raise our profile locally and assist in attracting new talent in the future.”

Global Graphics Software’s roots are in Cambridge and go back to 1986.  The company sells technology to printing equipment manufacturers across the world, such as HP, Kodak and Canon.

Image courtesy of Pipeshield International

A record five firms in Suffolk have won Queen’s Awards. They are pubs and brewery firm Adnams;  PCE Group, which makes automation systems; Pipeshield International which provides pipelines, cables and equipment for the offshore industry; Ant Group in Bury St Edmunds, which provides cleanroom equipment for various industry sectors; and Chorus Intelligence, which provides data cleansing and analysis software used by law enforcement.

Essex composite materials firm Dura Composites has scooped a second Queen’s Award for Enterprise, this time in the Innovation category, for its pioneering rapid-deployment train station platform solution known as Dura Platform.

This is a height-adjustable composite train station platform that reduces gaps between the train and platform edge to enhance passenger safety, is rapidly installed and therefore reduces passenger disruption.

SciBite is honoured for its cutting edge software to revolutionise access to and distribution of scientific information. Cambridge Healthcare Research Ltd wins for its turnkey capabilities to improve market analysis and other critical data affecting healthcare markets.

James & James Fulfilment, founded in Cambridge and now anchored in Northampton, is another notable flag-flyer for the region as it celebrates yet another Queen’s Awards success for the globally influential business. The company wins in International Trade for its unique Cloud-based e-fulfilment system, delivering a real time, low friction solution for online retailers.

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