Barclays Eagle Labs awarded Digital Development Grant over Tech Nation

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Barclays Eagle Labs incubator to decide on over Tech Nation’s purpose in administering UK authorities digital state grant amid backlash from startup ecosystem

Sebastian Klovig Skelton


Printed: 20 Jan 2023 16:20

The UK authorities has awarded Barclays Eagle Labs a £12m digital state grant to enhance technology startups and scaleups all over the UK, replacing longstanding supplier Tech Nation within the aim.

The Digital Development Grant funding used to be established by the Department of Digital, Custom, Media and Sport (DCMS) to enhance the state of the UK’s tech sector and aid present technology firms scale. The money will be split over two years, and used to be awarded thru an originate competitors and review course of.

The aim of Tech Nation, which previously administered the funding and relies on authorities grants for 75% of its earnings, will be phased out in March 2023 and replaced by Eagle Labs, a startup incubator trudge by Barclays.

The grant award confirms reviews from September 2022, which revealed that Eagle Labs used to be in line to secure the funding, and which brought on 140 tech founders, executives and shoppers to impress an originate letter arguing that, “Suppliers of authorities-backed enhance must be grounded within the startup ecosystem and native ecosystems all over the nation – no longer having a stumble on to shuffle on its coat tails.”

Whereas the signatories said they enhance the evolution of the ecosystem, they “are concerned that this substitute dangers throwing out the infant with the bathwater – and in this moment of disaster, the message this sends about what authorities thinks of the sector is damning.”

Responding to its lack of funding, Tech Nation said: “In anticipation of the authorities’s resolution to award the Digital Development Grant to a different birthday celebration, now we had been working around the clock to procure our future and continue turning in for UK scaleups. It’s crucial that any route forward for Tech Nation ensures we’re in a spot to continue to act within the right interest of the tech community and build the wants of scaleups front and centre. Here’s the precept that has consistently guided us, and will files our resolution making over the subsequent steps we opt from right here.”

Tech Nation added it has supported the expansion extra than 5,000 startups; delivered £15 return on every £1 invested by the UK authorities; contributed £600m of added price to the UK economy since 2014; and created 13,000 jobs. It extra added that 40% of all UK unicorns (firms valued at over $1bn) graduated from a Tech Nation state programme, and that its alumni beget collectively raised a total of £28.1bn in funding.

DCMS confirmed that varied authorities funding obtained by Tech Nation, together with for its purpose in securing visas for founders, is maybe no longer stricken by the resolution to award the grant to Eagle Labs. It extra claimed that mixed funding from the authorities and Eagle Labs, which already offers state and enhance programmes from 38 of its branches all over the nation, will enhance extra than 22,000 firms, on the least 80% of which would be essentially based fully outdoors London.

“We beget to unlock the ability of the subsequent technology of startups and scaleups and enhance tech firms in all corners of the nation,” said Paul Scully, minister for tech and the digital economy. “Barclays Eagle Labs are digital industry experts and will aid tens of hundreds of tech companies and founders to discontinue their dreams and murder jobs and economic state.”

In accordance to DCMS,, the grant will aid Eagle Labs to fund practicing sources and opportunities for entrepreneurs; present specialist enhance for founders from underserved communities; and residing up efficient native networks to enhance tech firms where ever they are located. It added the grant will furthermore allow Eagle Labs to originate contemporary services and products and develop present ones, with the funding anticipated to double the selection of mentoring periods offered to tech companies to 1,500 a one year.

“Eagle Labs’ vision is to fabricate the UK tech sector an engine for state and for the UK to be the right set within the arena to originate and develop a tech enterprise,” said Amanda Allan, director of Eagle Labs.

“Throughout the Digital Development Grant, we’re indignant to double the final system down to attain extra firms all over the nation with our ideal-in-class enterprise state programmes and bespoke regional enhance. We beget a monitor account of supporting over 8000 startups and excessive-state firms since we launched in 2015 and we’re proud that, which potential that of our established Eagle Labs network, we can crawl thru all grant funds to our birth companions and programmes, helping to maximise the affect of the grant in supporting the UK tech ecosystem.”

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