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14 January 2020

New King's and Unilever Bioscience Innovation Hub launched

In order to stimulate scientific ideas and commercial innovations, a newly established Innovation Hub has been launched between King’s College London and Unilever.


Providing a centre of biological expertise and building on the Framework Agreement established in 2016, the Innovation Hub will bring Unilever researchers and King’s academics together in a shared space to focus on research in personal care, human biology and microbiology.

With the aim of broadening understanding of skin, scalp and oral physiology, through development of computational models and bio-engineering solutions, the Hub will help drive the next generation of personal care products.

The Hub gives Unilever direct access to expertise at King’s, facilitating new and innovative solutions to long-standing technical challenges. They will be able to access the expert measurement and analytical capability of King’s, including histology, imaging, omics analysis and computational biology. In turn, King’s staff and students will have exposure to commercially relevant research which can help prepare them for future employment.

The longstanding partnership between King’s and Unilever was established over 20 years ago, with the last five years seeing Unilever directly funding over £3 million and leveraging a further £850,000 towards research at King’s, in areas such as regenerative medicine, cardiovascular, nutrition and dentistry. A number of research projects and PhD studentships have been supported through the existing Framework Agreement, and with this Innovation Hub the partners aim to build upon the successful collaboration and break new ground.

I am delighted at the launch of the Innovation Hub in partnership with Unilever. Driven by the ambition to build a world-leading partnership and centre of expertise, this Hub will enable the co-creation of scientific ideas and innovations in the bioscience area in support of Unilever’s Beauty and Personal care business. I look forward to seeing the outputs of this exciting collaboration.

Professor Sir Robert Lechler, Provost and Senior Vice President (Health) King’s College London

The Hub represents our ambition with King’s College to build a next generational world leading partnership which will further unlock world leading scientific research and new insights, ideas, and technology across our businesses. I look forward to building this co-creation partnership to watching it grow over the coming years.

Samantha Samaras, PhD, FRSB, Vice President Science and Technology, Beauty and Personal Care R&D Unilever