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A quick introduction to the booming startup scene in London

StartupsBlog
by Johnny Vowles, 23 Nov 2012Blog
A quick introduction to the booming startup scene in London

Like many, my everyday life is dependent on technology. It’s certainly made my life easier and with the expanding wealth of information available at our fingertips, never has there been such an exciting time to be working in the technology industry.

And London is - in many ways - at the heart of the European technological revolution. In recent years, Old Street – a previously rundown area situated on the door-step of the financial whirlwind that is the City - has been transformed and is now known as Silicon Roundabout, a cousin to the long established technology beacon that is Silicon Valley in the United States.

There are about 300 startups in Silicon Roundabout, with another 5,000 or so in the wider east London area. Business is booming with numbers expanding rapidly- which in turn creates a virtuous circle as success attracts a diverse array of talent with skilled individuals and entrepreneurs all looking to capitalise.

Large players such as Amazon and Microsoft have been recently attracted to the expanding industry and have both announced plans to open technology hubs in the area with other established projects such as TechHub within Old Street’s Google Campus offering services and networking events to support new startups.

It could not have happened at a better time.

As the City falters and traditional jobs such as manufacturing decline, the government is now looking to the ever-expanding London startup scene to help drive the British economy. Politicians, including the charismatic, floppy-haired Boris Johnson, are actively trying to attract more companies to invest in the area. The government has even poached Facebook's European boss to head up its investment fund.

It is this exciting potential, depth of opportunity and innovation that has attracted me to the scene. Working largely as a digital consultant, I frequently collaborate with some incredibly smart and imaginative people within the technology world; ranging from young, bright-eyed entrepreneurs ready to release the next must-have product, to the old-school puzzle-solving coders who I often refer to as the composers.

Unfortunately (as of yet) there isn't an App which can predict the future. However in my articles I'll be doing my best to address the interesting topics around the sector and will try to decipher what makes startup companies tick and what we can expect (or hope) to see in the near future.

I'll be covering the success stories, the hardships and obstacles; the latest buzz releases and noting the popular and emerging consumer trends for ITProPortal. Collaboration is a vital ingredient to any successful project so I'm always interested in discussing the industry and what the future holds. Feel free to get in touch if there's any particular topic you'd like me to discuss. It’s my pleasure to be covering such a popular and innovative sector. We live in exciting times.

Johnny Vowles is a digital consultant and founder of London-based web-focused company, Jamboo.

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