Thursday, 20th November 2014
Reading top for technology businesses according to KPMG report
Professional services firm KPMG analysed technology clusters around the UK and found the town has the largest footprint of tech enterprises per capita.
A new report has listed Reading as the number one regional technology centre in the country.
Professional services firm KPMG analysed technology clusters around the UK and found the town has the largest footprint of tech enterprises in the private sector business population.
Reading’s proportion of tech firms stands at about 19 per cent, which is three times the national average.
Almost one in five businesses in Reading are classed as tech companies and the pattern spreads through the M4 corridor; Hounslow through to Slough, Bracknell and Wokingham.
Barry Carter, partner at KPMG Reading, based in Theale, said: “The M4 corridor is the lifeblood of tech sector enterprise, with companies attracted by fast transport links into London, a highly skilled local workforce and purpose built business parks.
“Reading is also set to benefit further from faster connections from rail electrification on the Great Western Main Line.”
He continued: “The Thames Valley and South East have played leading roles in the UK tech sector growth story.
“The focus should now turn to replicating this success to other parts of the UK, to benefit both the sector and the economy as a whole.”
The KPMG report also found the tech sector is on course to enjoy its fastest year of expansion since 2007, outperforming all UK industry sectors in terms of both business activity and new business growth during 2014.
Based on an index in which any score above 50 indicates growth, the UK tech sector scored 59.2, which outperforms the combined total for other private sector industries, which was at 58.4.
However, there was a note of caution with the index showing that momentum had slowed down in Q3.
Mr Carter said: “The UK tech sector is increasingly being seen as a bellwether for the wider economy and is in no way immune to macroeconomic concerns.”
Nigel Horton-Baker, executive director at Reading UK CIC, said: “The tech sector, along with finance and business services, has been a pillar of Reading’s economic strength for a number of years.
“The KPMG reports bears out the importance of co-location in Reading for businesses in a similar sector, as well as the ease of access to markets and Reading’s skilled workforce for these innovative businesses.
“The combination of good sustainable business growth in modern companies, a skilled workforce and excellent transport links into and around Reading can only mean good news in terms of job prospects for those living locally or those able to commute into Reading, while the current and future investment in our business parks, town centre office space and transport infrastructure should only cement Reading’s place as home to the UK’s tech sector.”
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