Tech investments to boost UK company formations
A flurry of new technology deals announced across the UK are set to spur new UK company formations and drive innovation.
The deals in London, Belfast, Milton Keynes and Sheffield include investments by Vodafone and Barclays designed to support new UK company formations and the opening of a video games studio by one of Japan's richest businessmen.
It follows recent announcements from a number of technology firms about new projects in London.
The news, announced by UK Trade & Investment (UKTI), was timed to coincide with the Olympics to maximise publicity.
Five ICT firms have announced plans to expand their operations in Tech City, hub of digital and creative businesses located in East London.
These deals include:
Vodafone technology lab and incubation centre – a research and development hub that aims to identify promising start-ups
Morning Boost – a "business incubator" offering help, money and potential investment opportunities for new start-ups. It is backed by a group of Italian entrepreneurs and should create 50 jobs
Central Working – a centre offering meeting rooms, storage, stationery and networking opportunities. It will be the firm's third project of its kind in the UK and has been backed by Barclays bank
Gree – a Tokyo-based mobile social gaming company that is one of the fastest-growing companies in Japan, is announcing the opening of a new game development studio in the UK. Its chief executive is rated as Japan's fifth riches man by Forbes magazine
Milton Keynes, Sheffield and Ulster will also benefit from multi-million pound international business deals including Sophia Search - a University of Ulster spin-out which provides software tools to help firms catalogue and analyse their data, and US firm Airwatch that helps companies manage what apps and content are installed on their employees' smartphones and tablets.
The announcements were made at the Global Business Summit on ICT, one of 18 summits organised by UKTI during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The chancellor, George Osborne, said: "The government is determined to make Britain the technology centre of Europe, with London’s Tech City at its heart.
"London 2012 is the perfect stage to show investors and entrepreneurs how much we have already achieved, and the exciting potential of what is to come. We are also proud to demonstrate the world-class innovation of the British tech industry, which is helping to deliver the most digitally-advanced Games in history."
UKTI said the new plans will help drive growth by boosting jobs and company start-ups in the area, while helping cement the UK's reputation as a leading player in ICT.
In July, Amazon announced plans to build a media development centre in Tech City to drive a push into film and television delivery services.