Technology Strategy Board announces £1m competition for Silicon Roundabout

The competition is focused on specifically on improving the credentials of the Old Street and Shoreditch area, but is open to any London tech start-up to enter. Applicants must provide a two minute video detailing their upcoming projects to enter the competition.

Universities and science minister David Willetts announced the competition at the TechHub space in Old Street today: "It is important that we nurture clusters such as the one that has grown up in this area. This initiative, with strong community involvement and including coordinated help to enable the companies to move fast towards commercialisation, is exactly what clusters need."

The TSB will work together with UK Trade and Investment to scrutinise the entries and narrow them down to 10, which will then be offered 50% of the funding they requested. The other 50% will be sourced from VCs, angels and private companies through a 'funding workshop' the TSB will support.

Elizabeth Varley, co-founder and CEO of TechHub, commented: "This initiative is ideal for small and micro companies and start-ups in the Tech City cluster, which often struggle for capital or easy access to finance.  That successful applicants will be supported in attracting match funding is an important part of this project.

"By being the first to show their financial support for these successful companies, the Technology Strategy Board will be making it much easier for businesses to secure co-funding either from new business partners or from angel or venture capital investors."

Iain Gray, chief executive of the TSB explained the purpose of the competition: "Companies in the digital economy and the creative sector are different from those in manufacturing.  They are less capital-intensive, tend to be small or micro companies and often form tight geographical clusters.

This unique competition is designed specifically to promote the community dynamic within these vibrant clusters, encourage cooperation and, ultimately, grow business in the area for the benefit of the UK economy."

For more details on how to enter the competition, visit the TSB's Tech City Launchpad competition here.

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