Budget: More needed to help regional tech scenes in UK

by Innovation Warehouse, 18 March 2015

Government plans to see tech clusters emerge across the whole of the UK will fail unless it forms part of a wider national strategy, a leading start-up accelerator has warned.

The government announced support to help tech clusters form outside of London and the South East in its 2015 budget, and revealed tax cuts for creative industries such as video gaming, as well as promising to speed up the roll out of ultra-fast broadband.

But high-speed broadband and tax breaks will not have a meaningful impact unless they are part of a comprehensive strategy, industry experts are warning.

The founder of Innovation Warehouse, a start-up accelerator, has called for the government to ease the regulatory burden on small businesses, invest more in relevant education and skills, and reform immigration policy to help the UK tech sector. 

Access to finance was another issue highlighted, which is one of the reasons the UK’s tech economy has remained concentrated around London.

Ami Shpiro, founder of Innovation Warehouse, said:

“The government is right to try and encourage the creation of tech and enterprise zones across the country, but what we really need is more support for small businesses, more investment in education and skills, and an immigration policy that allows us to pick the best and brightest.

“High speed broadband will prove vital to improving connectivity and driving productivity, which has increasingly been a problem in Britain. It is essential we see more tech clusters emerge outside of London and the South East, just as investment in regional cities begins to grow.”