Prime Minister’s visit

Released on Friday 21st February:

Prime Minister David Cameron visits Oxford Cryosystems, a world-leader in specialist scientific equipment

The Prime Minister, David Cameron, today (Friday 21 February 2014) visited Oxford Cryosystems in Long Hanborough to meet executives and staff from the market-leading manufacturer of specialist scientific instrumentation and software. During his visit, Mr Cameron toured the production site with Managing Director Richard Glazer and spoke with staff about the local business’s role in supporting British manufacturing and stimulating economic growth.

Mr Cameron said: “Oxford Cryosystems is a successful example of a British SME (Small and Medium Enterprise) operating in a competitive global market at a time of recession: the company is keeping all of its manufacturing and assembly processes in the UK; it is sourcing services and components from local suppliers; and it is exporting products from Oxfordshire to the Orient and beyond. “Oxfordshire is a hub for innovation, knowledge and expertise and Oxford Cryosystems is no exception. Companies like Oxford Cryosystems are at the leading edge of the Government’s economic strategy to grow the economy and create jobs and I wish them every success with future developments.”

Oxford Cryosystems designs and manufactures cryogenic coolers used in X-ray diffraction, a leading scientific technique for studying the molecular structure and properties of a wide range of materials including pharmaceutical drugs, metals and DNA. The company’s range of cooling products are crucial to X-ray diffraction experiments because they can cool samples down to temperatures as low as -261°C (12 Kelvin). These low temperatures provide much clearer data about the molecular structure of sample materials, facilitating scientific advancements across such diverse practical applications as anti-HIV drugs, flat screen televisions, smart fabrics and soil-sampling on the planet Mars.

Mr Cameron’s visit concluded with a demonstration of one of Oxford Cryosystem’s cooler products which is currently being used in a prototype dish for the US$1.5 billion Square Kilometre Array (SKA), an international collaboration in South Africa that is expected to be the largest radio telescope on Earth.

For over 30 years, Oxford Cryosystems has nurtured a loyal customer base and now exports more than 90% of their products to major research facilities and companies in over 60 countries worldwide, helping drive science in both established and emerging markets. Furthermore, currently over 90% of suppliers to Oxford Cryosystems are British-based. Managing Director Richard Glazer explains: “At Oxford Cryosystems, we pride ourselves in understanding our clients’ needs and are committed to producing high quality, British-made products which are the system of choice in laboratories world-wide for cooling samples in X-ray diffraction experiments. We are delighted to welcome the Prime Minister to our facility and share insights into our business operations.”

Also meeting with Mr Cameron were Oxford Cryosystems Chairman Kevin D’Silva, Technical Director Alex Renshaw, Director of Operations Chris Taylor, Chief Finance Officer Rebecca Hoskin, Catapult Ventures Chief Investment Officer Ed Wass, and Professor Mike Glazer and John Cosier, original founders of the company. Oxford Cryosystems operates from its headquarters at Blenheim Business Park and employs over 20 staff, drawn mostly from local communities. Their range of products for use in sample cooling has expanded over the last three decades to include liquid-free systems, helium coolers and specially adapted systems for use with powder samples. Today the company is considered to be the global market leader in X-ray diffraction sample cooling.

Last month, the government announced a cash injection to the Oxford area as part of the landmark City Deal to boost innovation and business growth, create jobs and improve transport infrastructure in the region.

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