At Tech Nation we’re creating a national network connecting ambitious digital tech entrepreneurs across the UK.
Whether you’re a founder looking for connections or support, a stakeholder embedded in a local community or are simply interested in what’s going on in a region, our Entrepreneur Engagement Managers (or ‘EEMs’ for short) are on the ground in towns and cities and ready to help.
Here we speak to Matt Exley, our South West Entrepreneur Engagement Manager based between Bristol and Bath. Matt has joined Tech Nation on a temporary basis to cover Vicky Hunter, who recently went on maternity leave.
We are excited to have Matt working with us – and you can read more about him below.
Tell us about yourself
Matt Exley: Mentoring on a student tech project at the University of the West of England led me to this role. The student enterprise scheme was full of great ideas and an energy that got me hooked.
My background is in marketing and communications where I’ve specialised in agrifood as well as food, drink and wellness brands. I’ve also worked with South West tech businesses across the region in the past; consultancy exposes you to so many different sectors.
As a passionate environmentalist I’m excited about the role that technology is playing in how we care for our planet and its resources. There’s already a great richness of companies across the South West that are working in sustainable tech, as well as lots of enthusiastic consumers who are ready to embrace their inventions.
My food background and interest in nutrition is also being used to connect with agritech and healthtech businesses where there is so much potential for impact. The pandemic will only serve to accelerate developments in these areas.
What are you looking forward to in the role?
As an armchair science enthusiast, I’m also keen to nurture the growth of the South West’s emerging space clusters and to lean more about how they are capitalising on the region’s aeronautic heritage.
I founded and led a communications consultancy some years ago and recognise that it can be lonely and unnerving at the top of any business. Tech Nation’s ability to bring together founders locally, regionally and nationally really sets our organisation apart.
We successfully create forums where business leaders can share their challenges and learn from each other and I’m sure I will draw upon my own experiences as an MD as I meet founders from across the region.
What are your thoughts on South West tech?
The South West, from Cornwall to Bournemouth to Swindon and into Gloucestershire, includes vibrant cities that crackle with tech innovation as well as smaller clusters where brilliant people have escaped to create and innovate in beautiful locations. My job is to connect with them all and to help them access opportunities to grow.