Our 2019 London Tech Week event welcomed attendees from 21 different countries – from Pakistan and India to Sweden, Finland and Portugal, to the US, Canada and New Zealand – and happened to have fantastic female representation, in terms of speakers, panellists and delegates; often unusual in the tech world.
As well as hearing from our co-hosts JMB and Department for International Trade (DIT), our own Joanna Dodd, shared impactful advice ranging from ‘do more research than you think you need’, ‘ensure your messaging and content is right for the market’ and ‘get to understand your stakeholders’ when launching in the UK.
Investor Addie Pinkster, Founder of Adelpha Network packed some home truth punches for the delegates with some basics on seeking UK investment and sins to avoid when approaching an investor. Fund raising is crucial for most new businesses and Addie gave our audience a no holds barred overview of the UK landscape. (check out comments on Twitter and LinkedIn). Soundbites included:
- In the UK investing in start-ups is a no brainer with amazing tax concessions for investors
- Treat your investor as a business partner, the more you communicate with them, the more you’ll get out of the relationship
- The diversity of capital in the UK is great – the EIS system is fantastic
- Choose the right investors. Ensure you choose an investor for their value add – be careful about term sheets
- Scale up success is much less about access to capital and much more about high quality, independent advice
Our stellar line up of panellists, moderated by DIT’s Tech Specialist, Chris Moore, was made up of international tech founders from South Africa, Turkey and Australia at varying stages of their UK market entry journey. Rochester works with businesses from around the world and understands different challenges for UK market entry in all territories, and our diverse panel reflected this well.
The panel featured Melinda Nicci, Founder and CEO of award-winning wellness company, Baby2Body, Necati Ertugrul, Founder of cyber security solution CyberCyte and Mark Bolton, General Manager of online training provider GO1. In a lively and engaging discussion, the panel shared their highs and lows of entering the UK market and provided valuable advice and learnings including:
- Always make use of the brilliant organisations in the UK – find your tribe as there’s a great ecosystem of knowledge here
- Your chief network coming into a new country is your staff, so try to hire locally
- London and UK have a pool of diverse, expert talent which is more cost effective than other countries
- Partnerships are important – in order to create the right sales infrastructure, creating a partner infrastructure is key
- London is a great launching pad for Europe and the world!
Don’t worry if you missed it the event, we would love to share our insights and speak to you about your UK aspirations. Get in touch with us here