Statement in response to the DCMS Digital Growth Grant announcement

Tech Nation, January 20, 2023 2 min read

When Tech Nation was founded by the government over nine years ago, the UK’s tech economy was fledgling. Our growth programmes, visa scheme, digital academy, networking conferences, international expansion programs, sandboxes, panels and in-depth sector research, analysis and reports have helped shape the trajectory and success of UK tech, now valued at $1trn (16x in 10 years) and employing 4.8m people (2x in 10 years)with salaries 80% higher than professional jobs.  

 Additionally, UK tech secured over $30bn in private capital in 2022, double our nearest European counterpart. 

Within the UK tech ecosystem, our focus has been on supporting the scaleups which create over 90% of UK tech jobs, and we’re proud of the fact that those we’ve accelerated have disproportionately thrived. While 80% of start-ups fail within their first 2-5 years, over 95% of startups on Tech Nation’s growth programmes have gone on to scale. Some 40% of all tech unicorns and decacorns created in the UK have graduated from a Tech Nation growth programme, collectively raising over £28.1bn so far in venture capital and capital markets. 13,000 jobs have been created nationwide as a direct result of our intervention. Our alumni includes the biggest names in UK tech; Monzo, Revolut, Bloom and Wild, Zilch, Just Eat, DarkTrace, Marshmallow, Sky Scanner, Peak AI and Deliveroo, to name just a few of the 5,000+ businesses we’ve supported. 

As a government backed organisation, we’re also proud that Tech Nation has delivered one of the best ROIs for the taxpayer, delivering £15 return on every £1 invested by the UK Government.

In anticipation of the Government’s decision to award the Digital Growth Grant to another party, we have been working around the clock to secure our future and continue delivering for UK scaleups. It is essential that any route forward for Tech Nation ensures we are able to continue to act in the best interest of the tech community and put the needs of scaleups front and centre. This is the principle that has always guided us, and will guide our decision making over the next steps we take from here.

UK tech growth over the past decade:

  • $1trn valued UK tech ecosystem ($60Bn in 2013); 16x growth
  • 4.8m jobs (2.33m in 2013); x2 growth
  • 135 tech unicorns (13 in 2013); 10x growth
  • 20 places with a tech unicorn or more (4 in 2013); 5x growth

Tech Nation impact since inception

  • £600m of Gross Value Add contributed to the UK economy since 2014
  • £15 return on every £1 invested in Tech Nation by the UK Government
  • 95% of startups on Tech Nation’s accelerator growth programmes have gone on to scale
  • 40% of all tech unicorns and decacorns created in the UK have graduated from a Tech Nation growth programme 
  • £28.1bn raised by Tech Nation alumni
  • 13 IPOs from Tech Nation alumni companies 
  • +46% acceleration in turnover in companies supported by Tech Nation within 2 years
  • +18% acceleration in employment in companies supported by Tech Nation within 2 years
  • 13,000 jobs created by Tech Nation’s programme interventions

Tech Nation delivery since inception

  • 5,000+ companies supported  
  • 1,250+ companies from across the country accelerated through 48 growth programmes 
  • 64,000+ individuals through our online academy
  • 6000+ Global Talent Visa applications processed, and 3000+ visas endorsed 
  • 700+ events to connect and inform the ecosystem
  • 80+ research reports, giving an unrivalled, impartial and comprehensive analysis of the UK’s digital economy
  • 3,200 leaders of UK scaling tech companies are members of Tech Nation’s Growth Platform network
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