Northern tech powerhouse: What makes Manchester a driving force?

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Earlier today, Managing Director of Manchester Science Partnerships, Tom Renn spoke on the Northern Tech Powerhouse panel at MIPIM. Moderated by Manchester Digital’s Katie Gallagher, the panel of experts discussed what is making Manchester a driving force for tech.

As a leading city for tech companies, Tom was joined by figures from, Social Chain, AO and Cisco, all of whom are helping to drive global innovations from Manchester, showcasing the exciting projects and collaborations taking place in the city.

Manchester is one of the top 20 European cities for digital, a major driver for this being the talent and skills within the city, much of which is coming out of the city’s two outstanding universities. With a vibrant and culturally diverse community, the excitement around the city means that when the right people, with the right skills and talent, arrive in the city, they stay.

This access to fantastic talent is driving start-ups to choose the city as an ideal location to begin their business journey, but also more established national and international brands are seeing Manchester as a great place to set up new bases and trial new ideas. Companies like Amazon and Microsoft are opening large bases in Manchester, ahead of any other UK city. But it is the diversity and breadth of innovation of the companies here, that means the small innovators can survive and grow alongside the large corporates.

There is the state of the art infrastructure to support fast-growing businesses, providing them with access to markets and finance to help businesses to thrive. The ecosystem that is being built is especially supportive of small businesses and start-ups, especially those in tech, particularly in terms of investment, office spec and availability.There are spaces across Manchester that serve a great purpose and are really helping to galvanise the industry.

As developers become smarter about making their buildings and working environments into destinations which offer employees a work/life blend, the next generation of talent is actively seeking these as places to work. A great example of this is Manchester Science Park, home to CityVerve and Cisco with strong facilities for digital and tech businesses to succeed and grow, with plenty of room to expand.

Of course, it’s not only the talent that businesses benefit from within Manchester. In helping businesses to succeed there are also great transport links throughout the city which allow people to travel easily around the city, the UK and internationally.

But it truly is the people that make the place. Across Greater Manchester, there is a strong sense of community, as individuals and businesses want to see each other thrive and celebrate this success. It’s easy to see why businesses flourish in this great city.

Manchester as a tech destination is something that is already happening and will continue to grow.

Find out more about our involvement at MIPIM, here.

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