Joined by our friends at Rochester PR and the Department for International Trade (DIT), during London Tech Week we teamed-up for the third time to host a practical panel session on how to successfully launch and have first-hand experience of growing a tech business in the UK.
Providing tech businesses from all sectors and countries of origin with a rare opportunity to learn from their peers about overcoming barriers when growing a tech business in the UK. The interactive event showcased a line-up of panellists from international tech businesses at varying stages of their UK market entry journey, sharing the advice and experiences with those looking to capitalise on the UK market.
A 100 strong crowd assembled at WeWork’s atrium in Holborn from destinations as diverse as Israel, Istanbul and Indonesia. Following an introduction by DIT’s Terry Mankertz, Joanna Dodd from Rochester kicked off proceedings by focusing on why ‘you need to treble everything when it comes to launching in London’ – time and budget, but also fun – and the ‘what, why, how, where and who’ of market entry from a communications and brand building perspective.
James Blakemore from JMB imparted the importance of securing early sales leads – discussing the potential routes to market, including partner networking, and how to capitalise on UK sales opportunities.
DIT’s Technology Specialist, Chris Moore then took up the moderator seat wider Q&A. Panellists included; Katie Lewis of The Accelerator Network, Salim Ziade from Dubai, Co-Founder of EasyCat, the world’s first catalogue sharing network, Helen Wang, CEO and board member of Chinese fintech company BBD, American Farhan Lalji, Partner at Rokk3r Lab, and Jonathan Partouche, President and Founder of French owned cyber protection company Origone which set up in the UK in March 2016.
After a highly engaging discussion and lots of questions from the audience, the key take-aways were summarised as:
- Canvassing as much local decision maker opinion as possible, at the earliest possible stage
- Figuring out how to ‘pin down a Brit’ – someone being polite about your new product or service doesn’t necessarily mean they will buy it!
- Not underestimating the digital divide between your tech business and companies that are not from the tech world, and figuring out how to effectively bridge that divide
- Embracing the diversity, including the diversity of talent that London has to offer
- If you can succeed in London you can succeed anywhere!