A hub of activity! Booming tech sector in Leeds set for £3.7m boost

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Leeds’s drive to establish itself as the digital capital of the North is set to be handed a multi-million pound boost.

Leeds City Council has been offered a £3.7m grant by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to help with the development of a new Tech Hub, it was announced today.

The proposed Tech Hub would aim to “nurture start-ups, foster collaboration and provide mentoring, learning and business support”.

And members of the council’s decision-making executive board are expected to accept the DCMS grant at a meeting next Wednesday.

The meeting will also run the rule over a report outlining the efforts being made by the council in partnership with businesses and education providers to confirm Leeds as one of the UK’s leading digital cities.

Initiatives include digital ‘boot camps’, improved careers advice and more code clubs in primary schools.

Plans are also being worked up for a new University Technical College specialising in tech learning for 16 to 18-year-olds.

Coun James Lewis, the council’s executive member for resources and strategy, said: “A large amount of work has and is being undertaken by the council, business and universities to establish Leeds as the home of many leading tech companies.

“The digital sector is a key pillar of our city’s economy and by making Leeds an attractive place for digital business to locate with a positive environment for growth, the whole economy can benefit if Leeds becomes a centre of excellence.

“This report to the executive board sets out the type of projects, initiatives and events which we have already introduced to meet these ambitions.”

The YEP recently launched a new Digital City platform in partnership with Sky Betting & Gaming.

The platform is designed to highlight the giant strides being made by a sector that boasts around 3,000 organisations in Leeds.

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