Sponsorship drive launched to transform lives with smart tech

The LEP launches a campaign to attract sponsors for its most significant presence to date at international tech conference, Smart City Expo World Congress 2019, held in Barcelona

Today (Thursday 18th July) the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is launching a campaign to attract sponsors for its most significant presence to date at international tech conference, Smart City Expo World Congress 2019, held in Barcelona. 

The primary aim of attending the annual expo, which is attended by 20,000 delegates from over 700 countries, is to attract new inward investors to the region. The offer to international delegates will include the opportunity to test new smart tech solutions in the region and collaborate with the public sector on new solutions. This is underpinned by the #Welcome package of support and funding for digital businesses to help locate and scale up here, available through the LEP.

The region’s credentials as a place committed to ‘Transforming lives with tech’ will be showcased building on the region’s presence at London Tech Week in June and the Leeds City Region Digital Framework Consultation of 2018 .  Leeds City Council, who will also be attending, recently scooped ‘Digital Council of the Year’ award for its work on digital inclusion, including its Careveiw app and TechMums initiative, and was recognised for its Smart City status by Digital Leaders 100.

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and NP11 said:

“Our region is experiencing a period of growth driven by tech innovation. We want this growth to benefit everyone who lives in our region and to transform lives with technology whether that is in Healthtech, Edtech, Fintech or more. That is why the LEP has developed a digital framework that sets out how digital technologies and data can play a key role in addressing or region’s biggest challenges.

“And it is those challenges that the Smart City World Expo explores at a global level. The best way to achieve our ambition is to work in partnership and that is why we want to work with like-minded organisations to join our 2019 delegation.”

Cllr James Lewis, Leeds City Council deputy leader and executive member for Resources said:

“Leeds is a digital city. We have plenty to shout about when it comes to the ‘Smart City’ agenda with many success stories to tell. We have a fast growing digital economy which contributes £1.3bn of GVA; the highest number of data scientists outside London; fantastic universities delivering world leading research across transport, fashion and health; a digital inclusion programme that sees the city leading the way and making lives better for its residents through smart city technology.

“We’re joining the campaign to transform lives with tech so that we can continue to take full advantage of smart city solutions for the benefit of all our citizens.”

The smart tech ecosystem is supported by the significant innovation underway at the region’s universities. The University of Leeds is researching pedestrian interactions with autonomous vehicles whilst its flagship VirtuoCity is designing new urban environments for sustainable cities. The University of York is tackling the challenge of safe autonomous technology. Working with European partners, the University of Bradford is utilising Big Data to devise waste management, smart parking and flood warning solutions, whilst the MONICA project at Leeds Beckett University is developing wearable teach and IoT devices for smart living and crowd management.

The digital sector contributes £6.5 billion to the City Region economy and employs 102,000 people. The rate of investment from international digital firms was recognised in EY’s 2018 annual foreign direct investment attractiveness survey. Beauhurst’s Scale Up Index 2018 revealed that our region has 209 scale ups attracting £108.8 million in venture capital, the most in the North by 82 per cent.

Find out more about how you can get involved.