Vodafone have joined Google and Amazon in taking office space East London’s ‘Tech City’ – pushing up the number of big name brands investing in this growing hub of tech based innovation.
Aimed at identifying and supporting start-ups working on mobile internet apps, features and software, the Vodefone Xone will act as an incubator and provide expertise. The R&D unit will also look to identify investment opportunities that would allow innovative firms to utilise the backing and global reach of Vodafone in exchange for handing over a stake in the fledgling business.
Part of a wider program, the London branch of Vodafone Xone follows the successful launch of the concept in Silicon Valley in 2011.
“Vodafone is delighted to confirm its intention to set up a new R&D and incubation centre in Tech City,” said Siavash Alamouti, Vodafone Group research and development director.
“This exciting new centre will build on our existing Vodafone xone facility in Silicon Valley, giving cutting-edge British high tech start-ups access to the expertise and global reach of Britain’s largest ICT company.”
Focused around Shoreditch and the edge of the City of London, the ‘Tech City’ development, backed by the UK government, appears to be drawing in investment as large firms seek to integrate with the innovative and creative firms who have flocked to the area.
The arrival of firms such as Google and Vodafone has not been without its negatives, with commentators voicing concerns that their arrival has pushed the cost of offices in the area up significantly – potentially pushing out the start-ups that helped make the area such a success in the first place.