Magnetic Venture: The Story of Oxford Instruments

Capa
OUP Oxford, 25 de jan. de 2001 - 387 páginas
Magnetic Venture is the inside story of Oxford Instruments, the first substantial spin-off company from Oxford University, established in 1959. Written by one of its founders, it describes the ups and downs, the mistakes and successes of a growing science-based company. Over four decades Oxford Instruments grew from its small beginnings in a garden shed to an international company pioneering developments in superconductivity and medical instruments. It has been rightly celebrated as one of Britain's business successes, and became the role model for many later spin-offs. Although the environment for new technology companies has changed much since the early 1960s, many of the problems and challenges for growing science-based firms remain the same. Audrey Wood both tells an exciting story of endeavour and risk-taking, and touches on many issues of importance for today's entrepreneurs. Among these are: the nature of innovation, technology transfer, R&D strategies, marketing, sources of investment, entrepreneurship, university-industry relations, changes in cultural attitudes, management styles, growth cycles, and problems of acquisitions and mergers. Magnetic Venture explains how scientific novelties were developed into important products. The first was superconductivity, from which the company developed magnets for research, magnets for unravelling the structures of molecules in the design of new drugs, and, best known to the public, magnets for body-scanning. The final chapter looks in detail at the Oxford Trust and tells how this organization has been instrumental in promoting a better environment for the formation and incubation of new science-based companies. The story will appeal to many business academics and researchers, advisers and policy makers, the new breed of scientist/entrepreneur, and those interested in important scientific developments such as superconductivity, ultra-low temperatures, and magnetic imaging.
 

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Conteúdo

Prologue
1
The Superconductor Breakthrough
2
The Juvenile Company
3
Triumphs and Trials
4
The Slow Climb from the Morass
5
Medilog
6
Magnets for Modelling Molecules
7
Where is the Company Going?
8
The Beginning of a New
23
Bridges Networks and Nurseries
24
IO What of the Rest of the Group?
129
Strategies for the Future
138
I2 The Road to Flotation
149
I3 The New Public Company
160
I4 Seeds for Future Growth
173
I5 Boom Years
193

Making the Human Body Transparent
9
What of the Rest of the Group?
10
Strategies for the Future
11
The Road to Flotation
12
The New Public Company
13
Seeds for Future Growth ls Boom Years
14
The Renaissance of Oxford Magnet Technology
17
Link Scientific and a New Japanese Initiative
18
Heliosa Product Ahead of its Time?
19
Through the Long Recession
20
Issues of the Nervous Nineties
21
Towards the End of an
22
Challenges and Changes in 1987
205
The Renaissance of Oxford Magnet Technology
219
Link Scientific and a New Japanese Initiative 2 34
234
I9 HeliosA Product Ahead of its Time? 2 45
247
O Through the Long Recession
262
The Beginning of a New Era
315
The Oxford Trust
325
Oxford Instruments in the Context of PostWar British
349
Glossary
359
Index
369
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Sobre o autor (2001)

Audrey Wood was the co-founder of Oxford Instruments with her husband Martin, and remained a director until 1983 when it became a public company. Born in China, she was later educated at Cambridge University where she read both Natural Sciences and English Literature. For various periods in its early history, Audrey Wood was in charge of the company's administration, finance, marketing, and publicity, in addition to holding the legal position ofCompany Secretary until 1982. She travelled extensively to hold exhibitions and to visit customers in Russia, Eastern and Western Europe, USA, Japan, and Australia. Audrey Wood resigned from the Board in 1983 when OxfordInstruments was floated on the stock exchange, but has remained in close contact with the company.

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