Dr Will Barton OBE


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About Dr Will Barton OBE:

Will started his 40+ year career in the chemical industry with ICI where he progressed to the level of Manufacturing Director in the USA, ultimately with Zeneca, before moving on to FMC and later to Flexsys (a JV of Monsanto and Akzo Nobel based in Brussels) where he was Vice President of Manufacturing and Technology and then Business Unit Vice President.   

In 2005 he moved back to Oxford to co-found and take on the role of Director / COO of Oxford Catalysts, transitioning to a consulting role after an IPO and later the successful acquisition of Velocys.  He joined the TSB, now Innovate UK, on a part time basis in 2009 as Head of Technology, then Head of Manufacturing and was responsible for leading the development of a highly regarded High Value Manufacturing Strategy and led the set up and became the first board member of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult (HVMC). Will continued his activity with early stage companies during this period, and left the TSB in April 2014 to focus more in this area, co-founding and becoming Chairman of Oxford Biotrans and taking on other Non-Executive Director roles at NiTech Solutions and ZuvaSyntha.  Around this time, he also took on the role of founding Chairman of the Board of Irish Manufacturing Research, where he is transferring his learning from the set up and operation of the UK’s HVMC.   He also has voluntary roles as Non-Executive Director of IfM Education and Consultancy Services at the University of Cambridge, Chairman of Advisory Board at the Centre for Additive Manufacturing at the University of Nottingham, and a member of the Ventures Board of the University of Bath.  He assists other potential technology spin-outs, universities and investors through his own company, WillB Consulting Limited. 

Will has a first class honours degree in Physics and D Phil in Theoretical Physics from the University of Oxford, and a Certificate in International Business General Management from INSEAD. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, a Member of the Institute of Directors, and a director of the Chemical Industries Association.  He was awarded his OBE in the Queen’s New Year 2016 Honours List for “Services to Innovation and Manufacturing”.

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