Oxford University Innovation chief executive Dr Matt Perkins will stand down in early April after seven years in post.

Dr Perkins will depart OUI on 5th April to continue with his non-executive director roles and charity work.

Dr Mairi Gibbs, currently chief operating officer at OUI, has been appointed as interim CEO effective from 8th April.


Under Dr Perkins’s leadership, OUI has evolved to become a world-class university Technology Transfer Office (TTO), respected across the innovation ecosystem, the UK government and internationally. 

Oxford University Innovation retains its No.1 UK position for the highest number of university spinout companies created and the highest ranked university patent applicant across Europe.  

During his time at OUI, Dr Perkins has overseen rapid growth, including reaching the milestone of creating 300 companies based on research and ideas from students, staff and alumni at the University of Oxford. 

Notable company milestones include Oxford Nanopore’s IPO, which raised £350m in 2021. During his tenure, OUI secured multiple high-profile licence deals such as the Oxford – Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine and the recently WHO pre-qualification approved R21 / Matrix-M malaria vaccine. 

Oxford University wants female-founded spinouts to hit 50%

Over the last seven years, OUI also significantly grew the company’s startup and social ventures portfolio and consulting service operations.    

As interim CEO, Dr Gibbs brings with her a wealth of research commercialisation experience, as well as her extensive knowledge built up over two decades at OUI.   

She will lead the team to deliver OUI’s ambitious agenda, working with OUI’s board and the senior leadership team.  

OUI’s Board continues the process of recruiting for a permanent CEO.

Executive chair of Oxford University Innovation, Baroness Nicola Blackwood, said: “I want to thank Matt for his dedicated leadership at Oxford University Innovation (OUI) over the past seven years, a particularly pivotal period for both OUI and the broader research commercialisation sector. 

“Matt has led Oxford University Innovation with a laser focus on delivering impact and growing the university’s innovation portfolio of companies, licences and consulting services. He leaves OUI as a more confident, higher performing and more resilient organisation. 

“Mairi is well placed to take up the position of Interim CEO, bringing great experience and passion for the organisation and I look forward to working alongside her over the coming weeks and months.”

Oxford Startups 2.0 – nominate now!