James Fulton Muir (not pictured) helped to commercialise the ANU's world class research ... The ANU campus.

James Fulton Muir (not pictured) helped to commercialise the ANU's world class research ... The ANU campus. Photo: Louie Douvis

A funeral will be held in Canberra on Friday for a businessman who helped develop the commercial potential of the Australian National University's world class research.

James Fulton Muir, better known as Fulton, died on Sunday after a long illness.

The father of seven born in Melbourne enjoyed a long career with the Bank of NSW and Westpac and served as a NSW government representative in North America.

After returning with his wife Jenny to Canberra from New York about 27 years ago, he led Westpac's operations in the capital.

Mr Muir, 82, worked for many business and arts organisations, becoming an early president and later a life member of the Capital Arts Patrons Organisation, which supports the region's artists. He also applied his skills to Canberra and national organisations including the Australian Academy of Science, CSIRO, Australian Institute of Sport and Canberra Girls' Grammar School.

He received an honorary degree from the ANU, where the enterprise building is named in his honour, for his work in commercialising the university's research.

Mrs Muir said seeing the potential of commercialisation gave him the most satisfaction after his long banking career.

''As a businessman he could see all this intellectual knowledge at the ANU that was remarkable but it didn't go anywhere,'' she said. ''And because of his business acumen he asked, 'Why don't we do something with all of this?'''

A funeral service will be held at the Chapel of the Annunciation, Canberra Girls' Grammar School, on Friday at 11.30am. John Thistleton