The UK is a highly innovative nation, with a great reputation for small deeptech startups, often emerging from the UK university sector. For the most promising of those organisations, seed funding can be found in the UK, but scaling up these companies, and sourcing the funds to enable that to happen, can be a real challenge. This limits the value to UK plc, as these companies have the potential to provide huge returns to the economy, but with longer timescales than startups in other sectors, with a need for patient capital investment.
How big is this problem, in comparison with our key competitors? And what are the roles of the universities, venture capital firms, UKRI and its agencies, central government and the companies themselves to help address them?
These are some of the issues we discussed in this evening discussion event.