Technology startups in Cambridge and the UK will be able to learn the best way to do business in Asian markets when a new London office is opened by the Infocomm Investments Pte Ltd (IIPL) – an investment arm of the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA).
Steve Leonard, executive deputy chairman of IDA and chair of IIPL, told a Cambridge Connection technology delegation to Singapore that the plans would help to give startups from both countries access to each other’s markets.
In a further boost, Henry Goodwin – partner, Taylor Vinters Asia – revealed that there were plans to build on the Cambridge Connection event and hold a Technology Connection forum in early November, for which a delegation of Singapore-based technology entrepreneurs, companies and investors will visit the UK.
That event – to be held in London – will coincide with UKTI’s November Export Week and, according to Goodwin, “introduce the best of Singapore’s entrepreneurial talent and investor community to their UK counterparts.”
The announcements were made at the Cambridge Connection technology sector networking forum at the British High Commissioner’s residence in Singapore, hosted by Taylor Vinters, a Cambridge headquartered international law firm.
The event, now in its second year, linked technology sector investors, entrepreneurs, corporates, government and NGOs from the UK with their counterparts in Singapore to generate opportunities for collaboration, investment and strategic partnering.
Steve Leonard said: “We believe that Singapore and the UK are natural partners when it comes to building tech startups. The opening of our office in London in the weeks ahead is another step on that journey.
“Being in London helps us to listen, learn and understand the needs of UK-based entrepreneurs and more importantly, provide the bridge for Singapore-based and UK-based start-ups to access each other’s markets.
“In Singapore, we have a strong accelerator community that can provide these start-ups with great insights and access to the huge and growing Southeast Asia markets. We have a strong investor community with good connections around the world that are able to provide active help to build the start-ups that they fund.”
Attendees also heard from the UK Trade & Investment’s (UKTI) John Davies, ICT sector specialist, who highlighted how the UK is accelerating economic growth through innovative technology.
Miles Upton, head of Asia for Cambridge Consultants, explained how his business helped clients bring innovative products to market quickly and Patrick Farrant, Taylor Vinters’ head of technology, gave an insight into the UK investment landscape.
Antony Phillipson, British High Commissioner in Singapore, commended the team involved in the growth of Cambridge Connection over the last 12 months.
He explained: “Our core purpose at the High Commission and UKTI is to build networks and partnerships between the UK and Singapore. The Cambridge Connection has brought together research excellence, ambition and planning and can deliver real value and inspire the tech communities of both countries.
“The governments of the UK and Singapore are working in partnership to deliver the best possible environment for growing our economies through but it is the entrepreneurs managing hi-tech, high-value-added businesses that will deliver the growth.”
In addition to the VIP reception at the British High Commissioner’s residence, the delegation of UK tech-investors and entrepreneurs held a series of planned high level meetings with the British Chambers of Commerce; Singapore Venture Capital and Private Equity Association; UKTI; and EDBI, the corporate investment arm of Singapore’s Economic Development Board.
Additional meetings were held with key influencers in the UK Pavilion at CommunicAsia, the International Communications and Information Technology Exhibition & Conference, Asia’s premier ICT event.