Investors flock to ‘Silicon Gorge’ for Engine Shed event
Investors from as far afield as London and the North East flocked to Bristol last week for an event held at the iconic Engine Shed.
Engine Shed brought together the first ‘graduates’ of the WebStart Bristol Internet accelerator, 10 companies from the SETsquared business incubators in Bristol and Bath and 8 companies from the Bristol & Bath tech network, TechSPARK, in an event billed as “Silicon Gorge 1.0”.
In total 27 early stage businesses showcased to investors at the event.
Organisers say Bookings for the event went up noticeably after recent publicity about Bristol being listed by the Sunday Times as the “best place to live in Britain”.
The event was sponsored by Invest Bristol & Bath, the new team tasked with marketing the city region to inward investors.
The 27 companies, all digital or technology startups or early stage businesses, each delivered 5 minute pitches over 3 hours.
Secor and topics covered included gaming, twitter sentiment analysis, horse registration, searchable video crowdfunding sites, a site for women entrepreneurs, cleaning waste water with algae, silicon chips for 1Gbs broadband and many more.
Nick Sturge, director of Engine Shed and host of the event, commented: “We were delighted with how well the event went.
“This was a marathon showcase of a beautifully diverse set of companies, and the investors’ interest was very high all the way through.
“The quality of the investors exceeded our expectations and the businesses received a lot of constructive input – and offers to have follow up conversations.
“The assumption around the UK seems to be that you have to go to London to raise money.
“That might be the case for larger venture capitalist investments but the seed money these businesses need right now, is mobile as we saw yesterday.
“We look forward to building this momentum and running Silicon Gorge 2 later in the year.”