The likelihood of a dicey sellout by the country’s tech startups, following Brexit, seems to be annulled after the UK government felt impressed by the performance of its technology sector
The first Autumn Statement declared by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond confirms that research & development in the field of technology will be endowed with additional investment worth over GB£ 2 billion by 2020-end. Within the current Parliamentary tenure, the UK’s technology industry will be awarded with a new source of investment under the turf of Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, the money from which will be conferred and directed towards development of priority technologies; particularly for robotics and AI.
With a GB£ 400 million (US$ 497.46 million) investment into venture capital through British Business Bank, the Chancellor announced the government’s plans to allot additional financial aid on developing technologies for autonomous vehicles, and deter the sale or acquisition of UK startups to potential foreign buyers. Hammond commented on the need to “tackle the longstanding problem” of UK technology sector, which is – growing number acquisitions of budding technology enterprises by global tech giants, solely due to lack of financial support. Earlier, the UK government had decreed the investment of GB£ 1 billion (US$ 1.24 billion) for providing internet access to more than 2 million households from high-speed fiber-optic broadband connections, and another GB£ 400 million (US$ 497.46 million) outlay in the Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund for helping emerging broadband service providers.
After Prime Minister Theresa May recently addressed the impact of the UK’s exit from the European Union on the country’s technology startups, the Confederation of British Industry – largest business trade association in the UK – is likely to direct favorable initiatives and give particular attention to such businesses. Small businesses in the UK’s technology sector will be procured by the government after reports and recommendations are assessed by Small Business Research Initiative in the following year. Financial barriers for tech startups will be reviewed by the UK Treasury and an expert panel will advise it in these reviews. Some of the recent foreign acquisitions in the UK technology sector include, the 2014 Google acquisition of AI company DeepMind for GB£ 400 million, Twitter purchasing video compression startup Magic Pony in this year, and Microsoft Corp.’s procurement of smartphone keyboard software company, Swiftkey, for US$ 250 million.