By: Jack Mendel and Charlie Conchie
Begin-up physique Tech Nation mentioned it’s dealing with an existential disaster and was scrambling to safe funding for its future at the moment, after the federal government stripped it of a significant £12m authorities contract and handed it to Barclays.
The Division for Tradition, Media and Sport (DCMS) confirmed it had handed the brand new tech deal to Barclays Eagle Labs in a controversial transfer that has irked a lot of the UK’s tech sector.
The transfer was first reported in September and has been roundly slammed by fintech and tech entrepreneurs, with a petition urging the federal government to rethink now receiving over 400 signatories, together with the co-founder of listed fintech agency Clever and start-up physique Coadec.
The transfer is ready to put important sway over the tech and fintech sector within the fingers of one in every of Britain’s largest conventional lenders.
Minister for Tech and the Digital Economic system, Paul Scully, mentioned: “We wish to unlock the potential of the following technology of start-ups and scale-ups and enhance tech companies in all corners of the nation.”
“Barclays Eagle Labs are digital business consultants and can assist tens of 1000’s of tech companies and founders to realize their desires and create jobs and financial progress.”
..we’ve been working across the clock to safe our future and proceed delivering for UK scaleups
The information has been met with disappointment by Tech Nation’s CEO Gerard Grech, who instructed Metropolis A.M. at the moment the organisation it’s “pursuing varied routes and evaluating the choices out there to us”.
The brand new contract raises questions over the way forward for TechNation, which was based by the federal government nearly a decade in the past, in addition to scores of jobs on the organisation.
In an announcement issued after the announcement, the corporate mentioned UK tech it now valued at greater than $1tn and employs nearly 5m individuals, with salaries 80 per cent larger than skilled jobs.
TechNation additionally mentioned it had helped safe the UK $30bn in non-public capital final yr alone, which was double the closest European challenger.
“These we’ve accelerated have disproportionately thrived” with over 95 per cent of startups on its books having “gone to scale,” it mentioned.
It added that 40 per cent of all UK tech unicorns and decacorns -firms valued at over £1bn and £10bn, respectively – have graduated from a Tech Nation progress programme, collectively elevating over £28.1bn to date in enterprise capital and capital markets.
“13,000 jobs have been created nationwide as a direct results of our intervention,” Tech Nation mentioned.
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“In anticipation of the Authorities’s choice to award the Digital Development Grant to a different get together, we’ve been working across the clock to safe our future and proceed delivering for UK scaleups.
“It’s important that any route ahead for Tech Nation ensures we’re capable of proceed to behave in the perfect curiosity of the tech group and put the wants of scaleups entrance and centre. That is the precept that has at all times guided us, and can information our choice making over the following steps we take from right here.”
Tech Nation CEO Gerard Grech instructed Metropolis A.M.: “We’ve got been exploring varied choices, together with being a commercially funded organisation, in addition to exploring different funding from the federal government. We’re presently pursuing varied routes and evaluating the choices out there to us.
“What is totally important to us, is that any route ahead for Tech Nation ensures we’re capable of proceed to behave in the perfect curiosity of the tech group and put the wants of scaleups entrance and centre.
“That is the precept that has at all times guided us, and can information our choice making over the following steps we take from right here.”
Responding to the information, Amanda Allan, director of Barclays Eagle Labs, mentioned its “imaginative and prescient is to make the UK tech sector an engine for progress and for the UK to be the perfect place on this planet to start out and develop a tech enterprise.
“We’re excited to double down to succeed in extra companies throughout the nation”.
In keeping with the DCMS, Tech Nation will proceed to ship remaining grant funding till March 2023.
‘It’s baffling’: Startups slam Barclays’ contract win from Tech Nation
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Tech Nation ‘working round clock to secure future’ after Govt strips it of £12m contract and awards it to Barclays – City A.M.
By: Jack Mendel and Charlie Conchie