Tech City Launchpad – £1m in match-funding for startups in Silicon Roundabout

The UK’s Technology Strategy Board has unveiled a new £1m fund to support “digital businesses” in the Tech City area around Old Street and Shoreditch in east London (‘Silicon Roundabout’ to you and me). The initiative will be announced by Universities and Science Minister David Willetts, while visiting the co-working space and startup community TechHub.

The Tech City Launchpad will be targeting “small or micro companies” in Silicon Roundabout – although applicants from anywhere in the UK can apply as long as the project will be predominantly Tech City-based – with up to £100,000 in match funding. In other words, a requirement of the competition is to partner this public money with that of the private sector.

The Technology Strategy Board, working closely with UK Trade & Investment, will however help the selected startups attract that extra investment through a funding workshop involving “key potential investors such as business angels, venture capitalists and other companies in the digital and creative industries.” The successful companies will also have twelve months to secure the match funding that’s required.

The competition will open on 6 May 2011 through an invitation for startups to submit a two-minute video pitch, which will be judged by the public and experts. Then about 20 project applications will be invited to submit written proposals, of which ten will tbe selected and offered up to £100,000 (match) funding each.