E D I T O R ' S Q U E S T I O N
As a tech entrepreneur and founder of a start-up , I was eagerly awaiting the 2023 Spring Budget announced by Jeremy Hunt in March . However , I was disappointed not to see more measures announced to support the UK ’ s start-up sector , which is facing multiple challenges and uncertainties in the current climate .
One of the biggest shocks for the tech industry was the collapse of SVB – one of the leading banks for start-ups and venture capital firms . This has created a sense of insecurity and distrust among many tech businesses and investors , who rely on SVB for their financial needs . The government and other banks need to step up their communication and reassurance efforts to restore confidence and stability in the system .
Another major concern for me is the imminent closure of Tech Nation , a network that has been providing valuable resources and opportunities for ambitious tech entrepreneurs across the country for nearly a decade . Tech Nation has helped thousands of start-ups grow and scale their businesses , as well as showcase their potential on a global stage . Without Tech Nation ’ s support , many start-ups may struggle to access funding , talent , mentoring and markets .
The tech sector overall is one of the most innovative and dynamic sectors in the UK economy , contributing over US $ 1 trillion globally . It has also proven to be resilient and adaptable during the pandemic , creating solutions for various social and environmental problems . The government should recognise this potential and invest more in fostering a vibrant and diverse tech ecosystem .
I believe that the government should also listen more to the voices and concerns of tech entrepreneurs and consumers , who are at the forefront of creating value and impact through technology . By engaging more with them , the government can better understand their needs and challenges , as well as their aspirations and visions for the future .
On top of the creation of a more open forum , I would like to see more frequent conversations being had with tech entrepreneurs across the board . Spring and Autumn statements are one thing , but if the past year has taught us anything about the current economic environment for small businesses , it ’ s that things change quickly and unexpectedly . With that in mind , introducing new measures , however effective or needed , every six months simply is not enough to provide adequate support .
Lastly , I ’ d like to know how the government will actively promote small businesses abroad across sectors – this is something we see the US doing for businesses on all scales and can have a real impact . As an immigrant founder myself , I think the UK Government can and should do more to both welcome immigrants looking to start businesses in this country and promote rising stars within them .
I hope that future measures will reflect these points and demonstrate a greater commitment to supporting the UK ’ s tech sector in these difficult times . �
AHMAD AL KHATIB CEO , QUDO
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