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Why is Google Investing In The Welsh Tech Ecosystem

The Economic Intelligence Wales‘ (EIW) 2020/21 annual report released last month illustrates Wales’s resilience and agility over the past eighteen months in the face of Brexit and COVID-19.

The UK as a whole has seen both business starts and closures trending upwards but the report shows that Wales is outperforming all other areas of the UK. In Q1 2021, business starts in Wales were up 31% on Q1 2020 (14% in UK) with business closures down 1% in the same period compared to an increase of 7% across the UK.

This week saw the release of The 12 Clusters of Tech report, an initiative from UK Tech Cluster Group (UKTCG) and London Tech Week and like EIW, the Welsh report paints a prosperous picture of the tech scene in Wales.

“Part of the reason AMPLYFI is growing so fast is our location. People join our team from all over the globe to solve hard problems without compromising on their quality of life. AMPLYFI’s combination of ground-breaking technology, culture and Welsh countryside allows us to compete for the smartest people with the biggest organisations in the world, which in turn helps us build better solutions for global decision makers.”

— Chris Ganje, CEO, Amplyfi

The tech sector in Wales contributes an estimated £8.5b to the economy, employing over 40,000 people and housing 3600 tech businesses across its six cities. With £100 million of venture capital investments in 2019 alone, it’s not surprising that Wales is now considered one of the best bases for startups in the UK.

“We’re very lucky in Wales to have a welcoming tech community built around hubs such as Tramshed Tech. Whilst the pandemic may have reduced face-to-face meetings, the partnerships and contacts we’ve made over the years have continued to be a big part of our success.”

— Josh Evans, Co-Founder, Configur

Not only is Wales an increasingly attractive base for startups, it’s also home to the technology centres of globally recognised brands such as Aston Martin, Airbus, Thales, BT and Sony. In recent years, we’ve seen members of the big 5 make moves in Wales with Microsoft setting up a base at Tramshed Tech and Google for Startups supporting Tramshed’s latest Startup Academy launching next week.

‘At Google for Startups we believe that the next groundbreaking innovation can be built anywhere. We’ve been so impressed with the Welsh startup community for years now, and Tramshed Tech sits at the very heart of it. Having supported and connected us to some of our amazing alumni startups like Awen Collective or Concentric Health, taking on big challenges in the space of cybersecurity and healthcare, we’re thrilled to work with Tramshed Tech again and help discover the next big Welsh startup’

– Marta Krupinska, Google for Startups UK.

Google for Startups have committed to providing one lucky business from the Startup Academy 2021 cohort with £10,000 in equity-free cash and mentoring support to help with future business growth.