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How tech companies can win government contracts – a VC’s perspective

Alastair Mitchell, partner at EQT Ventures,  shares his take on how tech startups and scaleups can win government contracts.

With reports being commissioned on robotics, AI and other cutting-edge technologies, and robots as colleagues set to become a reality, it’s easy to overlook the fact that many public sector organisations are still tied to legacy technologies. Local governments, healthcare and education organisations nationwide are still dealing with jurassic networks and out-of-date software and hardware. Partnering with agile, innovative startups can help replace outdated technology and drive economy, efficiency, and effectiveness – the three key criteria the National Audit Office uses to assess value for money.

Every year, the government invests heavily into thousands of private sector contracts, which range from global corporates to sole traders. Recently, the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) revealed that, since 2012,  central government and additional public sector organisations have spent more than £3.2bn on technology services. Most promisingly, the latest quarter’s Digital Marketplace sales data highlights that 48% of this is being spent on SMEs, which means that £1.43 out of every £3 is awarded to SMEs. Increasingly, relationships between startups and the public sector are vital for investment, partnership opportunities, and business development...