Accelerate Nottingham open dedicated tech hub
Accelerate Nottingham, a dedicated hub for growing technology businesses, opens in September. Offer desk, office and meeting space for emerging tech companies, the owners believe that Nottingham could rival London or Manchester for tech start ups.
Accelerate Nottingham will be based in an office building in Wollaton Street.
The ongoing refurbishment will culminate in an open plan environment with a café and informal meeting areas, while the first floor will offer a mix of desk and office space with prices starting from less than £300 a month.
It is part of Blenheim Chalcot, the UK’s largest venture building company – which is run by the team that launched Nottingham’s TDX Group and later sold it for £200m.
Mark Sanders, the former chief executive of TDX Group, says the intention is to create a sense of community for technology businesses that are in their early stages and gaining momentum.
He explained: “Accelerate Nottingham is based on the success we’ve enjoyed with Accelerate London in Hammersmith and we’ve decided to do it here because our own experience tells us this is a place with the same ingredients.
“Nottingham has a heritage of large, technology-enabled corporates and a new generation of growing tech businesses powered by talented people developing disruptive ideas.
“We know from our own experience that ambitious, tech-enabled businesses have rhythms and requirements which are difficult to satisfy in more traditional working environments and Accelerate Nottingham is specifically designed to meet those needs.
“There are the spaces – not just desks, but places where you can meet informally and enjoy great coffee, great food and great internet – there is the sense of community from an environment where people can come together and maximize the synergy from being in the same place, and there is all the experience we can share from being part of Blenheim Chalcot, which has massive experience starting and growing tech businesses.”
The first floor at Accelerate Nottingham will have space for around 100 people, split between those paying an all-inclusive monthly charge of less than £300 for a desk and those occupying a range of dedicated offices.
The upper floors at Accelerate Nottingham will be occupied by three growing financial technology businesses owned by Blenheim Chalcot – consumer lending business Oakbrook, small business finance firm Liberis, and Bizfitech, a company that builds technology solutions for small businesses.
Mr Sanders said Nottingham is a “great city” in which to build a technology business, given the presence of major corporates, start-ups its Creative Quarter and two universities.
However, he believes that the city now needs to build on that to create a higher profile.
“Raising Nottingham’s profile as a tech hub is a two-way street,” said Mr Sanders.
“When you’re growing businesses your focus is on building commercial momentum, and when I look back on my experiences here we probably should have spent more time engaging with Nottingham City Council’s inward investment team about what we were trying to achieve and why it was a good story for Nottingham.