Welsh startups need greater support finds report

A new report has outlined six challenges facing Welsh startups and the tech ecosystem and made a number of recommendations to the government. 

The Coalition for a Digital Economy (Coadec) published its report after speaking to startups about their experiences and identifying some of the key issues including the need for more diverse investment routes and greater opportunities to network with other entrepreneurs.

red and white flag with dragon

Mark John of Welsh company Tramshed Tech said in the foreword to the report ‘Wales is well positioned for a bright future, if barriers to growth are addressed. 

‘That’s why we welcome future research to help us understand how best to further our tech ecosystem here, recognising both its amazing benefits and potential blockers to that growth.’ 

A need for an improved broadband network was also highlighted as one of the issues facing the sector as the report found that founders felt that a lack of good connectivity, including better travel networks, was a barrier to encouraging more activity there from an industry which has largely moved to hybrid working. 

Multiple of the recommendations made to the Welsh government by Coadec involved reviews into current practices such as how funding can provide better engagement with startups, the state of Welsh university spinouts and the commercialisation of research, and the promotion of tech startups. 

A need for better training and upskilling was also highlighted as Coadec reported that the Welsh talent pool ‘remains too shallow’ as many graduates move into England, for example two thirds of Cardiff University’s Computer Science graduates left the country following their studies. 

Other recommendations included unlocking further Angel investment by expanding the Angels Invest Wales network, investing in co-working hubs with flexible spaces for investors, and championing Welsh co-investment funds. 

However, despite calls for improved support, the report also outlined start up sectors where Wales currently ‘excels’ including in Gaming, Life Sciences and FinTech which was labelled as ‘one of Wales’ most prolific and well known areas of startup growth.’ 

You can read the full report at the Coadec website here. 

The state of startups in the UK was the focal point of a recent report by the Labour party which called for greater government support for the sector including leveraging existing systems to encourage greater investment.

Photo by Catrin Ellis


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