The James Hutton Institute’s (JHI) commercial subsidiary has hailed a successful first year of trading following the merger of Macaulay Scientific Consulting Limited and Mylnefield Research Services Limited last year.
The newly formed commercial arm – James Hutton Limited – is responsible for translating scientific research carried out at the JHI into commercial services, licences and products for the agricultural, environmental and oil and gas sectors.
Accounts for the company, which has offices and laboratories in Aberdeen and Dundee, reveal a boost in turnover and profits.
Turnover for the year ended March 31 increased by 25% to £4.92million from £3.927million previously. This was against a 1,316% increase in pre-tax profits to £170,000 from £12,000 in the year before.
In his directors’ report, managing director Fraser Black said he was pleased with the progress of the newly merged business which gave gift aid of £849,000 back to the JHI during the year.
Mr Black said the combined income for the company’s plant breeding services and plant variety rights arm was £1.329million.
He said royalties income had decreased slightly due to the expiry of plant variety rights for varieties such as the Loch Ness blackberry, however royalties income for potatoes rose due to an increased use of the Gemson variety.
The company submitted EU plant variety rights applications for two potential raspberry cultivars – one for the Spanish and South American market and one for the European market – while two applications were submitted to the UK National List for potential potato varieties.
Meanwhile, income at the analytical services arm totalled £1.767million, while income at the contract research and consultancy services division was £1.805million.
On future plans, Mr Black said: “Significant investments are being made in business development, marketing and new business discovery to fulfil the five-year business plan and grow the income.
“In addition new professional services frameworks and tools are being introduced to improve efficiencies and maximise profits and further improve delivery to customers.”