Nesta comments on the government's Digital Strategy launched today
Chris Haley, Head of Startups and New Technology Research at Nesta, comments on the government's Digital Strategy launched today.
"We know that London and other UK cities such as Manchester, Cambridge and Edinburgh, are already leading the European charge when it comes to attracting new digital businesses - and the UK already has a lot in place to help them grow. Today's strategy should help to further strengthen their resolve, despite the unknowns of Brexit.
"London in particular benefits from excellent access to finance, boasting the most developed venture capital industry in Europe and a booming 'alternative finance' sector. It also has a strong support network for startups and scaleups in the form of accelerators and coworking spaces. The UK's world class universities have always helped provide a steady stream of talent and government's move to provide digital training to millions stands to reap rewards for the sector and wider economy.
"Nonetheless, businesses need to be recruiting and retaining the best tech talent. The guaranteed rights of residence of EU citizens working in the UK is going to be front of mind for these businesses as the Article 50 debates continue tonight in the Lords.
"Improvements to digital infrastructure such as 5G are also integral to giving businesses the means to reach the heady heights of unicorn businesses like Snapchat in the US. In the UK we must crack issues of lifestyle that undermine attempts to attract and retain workers - house prices and office rental costs top the list and are issues that continue to afflict Silicon Valley."
About Nesta: Nesta is a global innovation foundation. We back new ideas to tackle the big challenges of our time, making use of our knowledge, networks, funding and skills. We work in partnership with others, including governments, businesses and charities. We are a UK charity that works all over the world, supported by a financial endowment. To find out more visit www.nesta.org.uk
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For more information contact Laura Scruby in Nesta’s press office on: 020 7438 2697/2543, [email protected]