Earlier this year the Prime Minister, Theresa May, announced that the Scottish capital will be the location for Scotland’s first artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain accelerator. The accelerator will be run in partnership with the University of Edinburgh with Wayra UK. The expectations are that it will create 400 new jobs for the sector.
Scotland’s technology sector is seeing a surge in the figures, showing thousands have jobs have been created, following a multi-billion-pound annual boost to the economy.
Tech Nation, the industry body, also released data showing job numbers in the sector in Scotland rose by 8 per cent last year to over 48,000, with average turnover per employee also hitting £80,000.
The Tech Nation report highlights the contribution of three tech hubs in Scotland – Edinburgh, Glasgow and Dundee – which together contribute three-fifths of Scotland’s total tech turnover of £3.9 billion.
Gerard Grech, chief executive at Tech Nation which analyses the industry’s contribution annually, said: –
“Scotland is one of the “jewels in the crown in the UK’s tech sector” and cited the success of the likes of Skyscanner and FanDuel.
“Scottish companies have continued to add jobs and are actively meeting up and collaborating across the sector. It is great to see that Scotland’s strengths in artificial intelligence and in data science are helping to bring forward many new start-ups.”
Sandy McKinnon, a partner at Pentech Ventures which is one of Scotland’s leading investors in the sector, said: –
“We think the talent here measures up to that which we are seeing throughout Europe. Scottish companies have entrepreneurialism in their veins, they rightly need to look outwards and think beyond these islands.”
Latest figures, highlighted in the report, show the number of tech start ups in Edinburgh is rising thanks to initiatives such as CodeBase, the UK’s largest tech incubator. It said Glasgow’s lower living costs are attracting a new generation of tech start-ups and workers, with a strong focus on areas such as data science and space.
Dundee, already well-known as a leader, continues to be dominated by the gaming industry, with the city’s talent stemming from renowned computer science and gaming courses at the University of Dundee and Abertay University.
Cally Russell, chief executive and founder of Edinburgh-based shopping app firm Mallzee, said: –
“These are exciting times to work for a tech start-up in Scotland. There’s a real community spirit and a strong start-up ecosystem here in Edinburgh which really spurs you on to succeed.
“We are lucky to have lots of very talented people in Edinburgh thanks to the great universities and the appeal of the city itself as a beautiful place to live and work, with a strong heritage in technology and business, it really is a fabulous place to start a business.”