Firms urged to apply for ground-breaking cyber start-up scheme

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GCHQ headquarters in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

Applications are now open for cyber security start-ups to join new nine-month programme and become an integral part of developing UK cyber security capability – a sector worth £22 billion a year.

A ground-breaking initiative bringing together GCHQ and industry expertise to develop new cyber security technology is to be extended.

Cutting-edge cyber security entrepreneurs and start-up firms are now being invited to apply to join the second programme in the GCHQ Cyber Accelerator which will be extended from three to nine months.

The programme will be delivered by Wayra UK, part of Telefónica, and the selected start-ups will receive benefits to help them scale all aspects of their businesses, including office space, mentoring and contact with an extensive investor network.

Minister for Digital Matt Hancock said: “We are working hard to make Britain the best place to start and grow a digital business and the safest place to be online. The GCHQ Cyber Accelerator is a vital part of this work and has already helped some of the most innovative cyber security start-ups develop cutting-edge new products and services.

“I’m pleased to announce the programme is being extended and encourage the nation’s talented entrepreneurs to apply.”

Earlier this year, seven start-ups graduated from the accelerator’s first programme and to date they have collectively raised more than £2.7m in investment, including follow-on contracts with major companies such as Cisco.

The firms which took part were CounterCraft, CyberOwl, CyberSmart, Elemendar, Spherical Defence, StatusToday and Verimuchme.

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