The UK government is planning to take a stake in the country’s promising fintech startups, among others. The new programs are a part of an expansion to support the tech industry, including revising competition rules and issuing a “new tech visa” to attract talent.
On Tuesday, British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak will give the invitation to join the summit with tech founders and entrepreneurs.
He is expected to launch the £375m million Future Breakthrough Fund. This fund will be designed to invest in a number of R&D intensive companies that want to grow rapidly.
Revolut is a London-based digital banking startup that has quickly become the UK’s most valuable private technology company of all time with a corporate valuation of $33 billion. In addition, British fintech firm Wise, formerly known as TransferWise, went public in London with a valuation of more than £8 billion last week.
The government wants to support new digital companies and fintech startups in the UK so they can compete with rivals in the US and China.
At the same time, the UK is also planning to make a number of announcements in the coming weeks to support the development of promising startups in the technology, life sciences and other innovation areas.
The government’s efforts will include taking direct stakes in companies through Future Fund Breakthrough. In April 2020, this fund was launched with the aim of supporting companies affected by the pandemic.
Instead, the launch of this new fund will support UK companies with research and development that can accelerate deployment of disruptive technologies. Companies eligible for the support need to raise at least £20 million from private investors.
In addition, to limit the monopoly and domination of large US technology corporations such as Google and Apple, the Government is also conducting consultations on a new “digital market unit”.
It is widely believed that the market for smaller UK startups will be further expanded by ensuring easy and equal access to app stores, while challenging the use of license agreements and software packages.