London: KPMG plans to set up a dedicated team based in London's 'Tech City' with the aim of supporting and promoting potential high growth companies in the capital.
KPMG will be the first of the 'Big Four' firms to have a permanent representation in East London's so-called Silicon Roundabout. The team is expected to be in place at the end of January 2013.
Tudor Aw, KPMG's European head of technology, comments, "We believe that a highly successful tech sector has the potential to create thousands of jobs and will help underpin the growth of other industries in Britain. Over the last two years, the UK Government has openly wooed tech investors, outlining Britain's technology credentials. Although the UK is already doing a lot in terms of strong tax incentives, R&D tax credits and entrepreneur incentives, a lot remains to be done before the UK tech hubs will rival California's Silicon Valley.
"Our initiative aims to create another important layer in the UK's developing start-up eco-system. In order to thrive, grow and eventually list in London, potential high-growth companies need to be nurtured and supported all the way and we want to play an important part in that process."
The KPMG team based at Tech City will provide advice for early stage tech companies. In particular it will:
- Provide a conduit for accessing the knowledge and expertise of KPMG in a timely manner and on sensible commercial terms.
- Advise and work with those companies looking to overseas markets and help them navigate the complexities of international trading.
- Bring together start-ups and corporates in order to share ideas that will help shape and deliver the strategies of the future.
- Provide support such as drop in clinics, seminars and consultancy advice
While based in London the team will also have a national remit to support technology start-ups wherever they are in the UK.
Tim Kay, KPMG's Technology Start-up Lead who will head the team in Shoreditch, comments, "Our own research shows there is a massive global race underway to set up the next Silicon Valley, but more and more technology executives believe that when it comes to tech innovation the centre of gravity is moving east. Countries such Russia and China, are all actively fostering an environment which encourages the development of disruptive technologies and we simply can't ignore anymore what's coming around the corner.
"No one would argue with the fact that the UK is a creative hub which is reflected in our fashion, music and brilliant scientists, but, with a few notable exceptions, what we have been poor at in the Tech sector, is taking that creativity to a commercial model. In order to put the UK on the global map of 'tech innovation hotspots' we need to act now."