We’ve all sat in pitching stages at tech events (and if you’ve not, sign up free for ours at Digital here. They’re that big opportunity for start-ups looking to scale-up. The X Factor audition to take big ideas from the petri dish to the pound signs. Our CEO David Warrender offered a different take on this tried and tested formula today in East London- he wasn’t selling an idea. He was pitching an entire nation. Wales.
The stage was in the Truman Brewery on Brick Lane, Shoreditch at unbound. That’s the global showcase that brings together more than 5,000 founders, entrepreneurs, investors, corporate & brand executives and thought leaders, connecting them with sources of innovation from around the world.
Which leads us back to Wales. The best place in the UK to invest, start and grow a digital business, as David told the crowd. Here’s his five reasons why:
1. A company wondering about infrastructure? The £1.2bn Cardiff City Deal creates huge opportunities for companies looking for investment. Ditto the new Compound Semiconductor Catapult, which helps SMEs grow by exploiting opportunities in the country where the technology which powers half of the smartphones around the world is already made. And then there’s the Office for National Statistics data science campus in Newport. Their aim is to build a new generation of tools and tech to exploit the growth and availability of innovative data sources- another golden chance to get involved.
2. But what about talent? Let me introduce the National Software Academy - an industry-integrated initiative at Cardiff University generating software engineering graduates who emerge with a portfolio of projects and clients ready to hit the ground running.
3. I’m an investor but where can I find matched investment? We’ve got Finance Wales putting in a combined investment of £140m last year (lender and private sector co-investors). And with the Development Bank of Wales launching this autumn, there’s an extra £35m of further funding on the way.
4. But I don’t know anyone in Wales? That’s where Innovation Point comes in. This year’s Tech Nation report called it right when they said we’re central to growth in Wales. Our role is to find the best ideas and help them find the funding so they can innovate. Our new Digital Dozen accelerator takes the best of the bunch and works intensively on their growth.
5. Okay, well how can I test drive what the Wales tech scene has to offer? Register free for Digital (18th and 19th September) here. It’s a two day digital festival for innovators, entrepreneurs and investors right in the heart of Cardiff. But you don’t have to wait until then - our team at Innovation Point are on hand to talk about you, your idea and your investment today. 01633 504102
Interested? Take a minute to watch this short film David showed from stage on #BeTheSpark, the new movement right here in Wales fusing people with great ideas together with organisations and investors with the fuel to make them a reality https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGE5rPrHsbo