Since 2020, TechSPARK’s Investment Activator Programme has been catalysing investment into the South West’s and South Wales’ renowned tech and digital startup community. Designed to support companies that are raising early-stage equity investment, the programme has been doing just that through our regular Pitch Me! events, bi-annual Silicon Gorge competition and the Quarterly Investment Briefing. 

Due to the success of the IAP, paired with the exponential growth of the cyber sector here in the South West and South Wales, we’re excited to announce that we’re launching a specific cyber offering in partnership with Cynam, Cyber Wales and the Swindon and Wiltshire Cyber Cluster. This new offering will enable the IAP to connect companies into the cyber ecosystem, help connect to cyber expert mentors, and assist to find cyber focussed funds.

Why does the IAP exist?

Equity Investment in the South West region has grown significantly in the last few years with £1.14bn raised in 2021, from just £200m raised in 2016However that hides a more negative reality, in that between 2016 – 2020, 73% of funding available went to London based businesses, and in larger rounds to more established businesses.

The IAP was put into place to address this imbalance – and this is how they can help:

Looking for funding? This is how the IAP can help :-

If you’re looking to raise Investment in the region there are a variety of ways the Investment Activator Programme can help. 

  • Pitch Me! Events – Get Investor ready with this monthly pitching event where you can get feedback and advice on your business and your investor pitch.
  • Quarterly Investment Briefing – A chance to get your funding raise highlighted at this regular investor focussed event and your one pager sent out to our Investor Database.
  • Silicon Gorge Investor Showcase – A pitching competition twice a year, to showcase the best companies in the region looking for early stage investment.
  • Storytelling – We shout about recent raises and any recent investment news via our blog, check it out to find out the latest.
  • Help,Advice and Connections  – Not sure where to start? Check out the IAP Microsite

Abby Frear, Director at TechSPARK and Investment Activator Lead, explains more: “We run a number of events to help founders, both in terms of getting investment ready, and also to allow them to meet interested investors.”

For the benefit of investors looking for talent to support in the region, things are a little different. Abby outlines for us, “Specifically for Investors, my co- activator Briony Phillips runs the Quarterly Investment Briefing, an event that happens, you guessed it, once a quarter – and is strictly aimed towards investors and enablers of investment – to inform them on what’s been going on in the equity investment landscape over the last 3 months, as well as detailing all the companies we know about in the region that are raising right now. We have some great speakers at these and they normally follow a theme eg Angel Investment, People Powered Investment.

“For both audiences, we publish a lot of content including our monthly blogs and investment related news, as well as features on the great companies who’ve raised, are raising and any new funds or pots of money available.” You can find this content, alongside more great tools and tips for founders and investors on the IAP microsite.

Stay tuned for more news and updates on the new cyber brand on the IAP coming soon!

Shona Wright

Shona covers all things editorial at TechSPARK. She publishes news articles, interviews and features about our fantastic tech and digital ecosystem, working with startups and scaleups to spread the word about the cool things they're up to. She also oversees TechSPARK's social media, sharing the latest updates on everything from investment news to green tech meetups and inspirational stories.