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Barclays unveils govt-funded support programme for UK agritech

Barclays Eagle Labs has officially launched its government-funded two-year support programme for UK tech businesses.

Barclays was awarded the £12 million Digital Growth Grant in a controversial decision earlier this year that saw the previous recipient, Tech Nation, forced to shut up shop.


Barclays Eagle Labs head of implementation David Hamilton has acknowledged that the move has not been universally welcomed in the industry, and that some people think his unit is the "bogeyman".


Now, the bank has set out its plans for the money, opening applications for the first of a series of programmes designed to tackle some of the key issues businesses face and drive regional growth in the UK tech sector.


An ecosystems partnership programme will enable organisations outside of London to apply for funding and deliver their own programmes that best support the challenges they are facing in their local area.


Meanwhile, a collaboration with Cambridge Judge Business School will see business leadership teams receive tailored coaching and access to scaleup-specific learning. Eagle Labs will deliver an additional six-month scaleup programme working to support companies with a focus on solving some of society’s challenges, in partnership with Plexal.


There will also be an agritech and healthtech programme and a funding readiness programme, while later in the year there will be a programme for black-founded tech businesses while a similar existing effort focused on female-led firms will continue.


Paul Scully, Minister for Tech and the Digital Economy, says: "Through the government-funded Digital Growth Grant, Eagle Labs will offer support and opportunities to help tens of thousands of startups and scaleups unlock their full potential. This is central to our plans to make the UK a tech and science superpower."



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