Tech London Advocates (TLA) – the independent network of 3,500 expert individuals from the tech sector which includes entrepreneurs, established digital giants, journalists and government figures – has taken a number of high profile steps to support London’s tech community and ensure its voice is heard in the aftermath of the UK’s decision to leave the European Union.
In July, TLA founder and chair Russ Shaw placed an advert in City AM to thank overseas workers in London for their contribution to the industry’s growth. Signed by over 150 ‘advocates’, including the Mayor of London, the advert championed European ideas and global talent as the driving forces behind London tech. Shortly afterwards, TLA established a London Tech Hotline, supported by London & Partners, to answer questions, provide advice and capture stories on the capital’s tech scene.
The latest initiative, unveiled at the end of August, is the publication of a Post-Brexit Charter and a Post-Brexit Talent Charter, aimed at attracting the attention of key influencers, including the Mayor and delegates at the upcoming party conferences so that the tech community remains visible and understood as Brexit negotiations loom on the horizon, and is given the regulatory landscape it needs to thrive.
The charters highlight in particular the importance of local and regional investment alongside international funding, digital skills training for home-grown talent, immigration to ensure skilled personnel also come from overseas and diversity across the sector.
Penningtons Manches has been a sponsor of TLA since it was established in 2013. James Klein, head of the firm’s digital business sector group and a partner in the corporate team, who was one of the founding group of 150 advocates and is now a member of the TLA board, has welcomed the two charters. James said: “While this is an uncertain and potentially challenging time for the technology sector in London, TLA has been extremely proactive since the Brexit referendum as it demonstrates internationally that London is very much open for business and ready to consolidate its position as one of the leading tech hubs in the world. In the words of the Post-Brexit Charter, the industry must come together to make Brexit a ‘springboard for growth and opportunity’.
Further information on TLA’s activities and support for London’s tech start-ups and high-growth businesses can be found on its website, www.techlondonadvocates.org.uk