Welcome to my weekly South West Tech News roundup, where you can get all the headlines from the past week in one place.

What has our busy tech and digital community been up to this week? From award wins and innovative breakthroughs to unmissable events and capital raised, take a moment to reflect on the hive of daily activity taking place in our region.

If you have a story to share, wizz it over to shona@techspark.co – I look forward to hearing from you!

Deadline for Enterprising Women 4.0 is fast approaching

Applications are now open for SETsquared Bristol’s Enterprising Women 4.0, a free business support programme for aspiring women founders, kindly funded by NatWest. 

 Enterprising Women is open to early-stage women founders based in the UK who have a tech, tech-enabled or non-tech startup, business idea or side hustle. 

 Over the course of six months, awardees will receive mentoring, coaching, workshops and online training, along with introductions to an adviser and investor network. Apply by 31 July 

This year's SPARKies comedian has been announced 

We’ve been super excited to share details about the comedian that will be compering our iconic awards show this year. The insanely talented Emmanuel Sonubi will be taking centre stage to take care of our SPARKies attendees and welcome our winners. 

No stranger to hosting awards shows, we cannot wait for Emmanuel to grace the South West with his warm and hilarious presence. Nominated for the ‘Best Show’ at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2023 and ‘Best Newcomer’ in 2022, Emmanuel is one of the hottest comedians on the comedy circuit right now.

He tells us, “When it comes to any type of performance, I never go in with expectations. Just an open mind. Every audience is different. The only thing I ever think is that this night is a big deal for a lot of people, so I have to do my best to make it so.”

BaseKit partners with Groundbreaker Talents to support tech careers for women in Africa

BaseKit is excited to announce their partnership with Groundbreaker Talents to support women in financially constrained communities in Africa with the opportunity to start a career in tech.

Groundbreaker Talents is a full-time residential program in software engineering targeting young women facing social and economic exclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa. Their objective is to support women in exploring their full potential and accessing a brighter future in the digital era.

Academic selected as Design Council Expert

Dr Matthew Jones has been selected to join the new cohort of Design Council Experts, an active community of design pioneers working towards a planet-positive and regenerative future. Matthew is an architect and Dean of the School of Architecture and Environment at UWE Bristol, an interdisciplinary school championing sustainable and inclusive futures for the designed, built and natural environments.

He’ll join a network of over 240 practitioners working across all design sectors; they will be engaged to work on projects, help shape policy and advocate for change to demonstrate the power of design to achieve net zero over the next three years.

Moneyhub launches new account verification service

Moneyhub Account Verification leverages Moneyhub’s AIS API to enhance the security and integrity of online financial transactions. It provides a robust method for ensuring that payment details and account names correspond precisely to registered account information. 

The key features of the verification technology include a significant reduction in the risk of financial fraud by ensuring all transactions are sent to, or received from, the correct and verified recipient. In addition, it helps streamline the process of setting up new accounts by using corroborated banking details as an additional identity check, making the payment journey simpler for both the sender and the customer.

Telent to revolutionise wireless communications for University of Bristol

More than 30,000 students and staff at the University of Bristol will soon have access to a new and improved Wi-Fi experience thanks to a major new wireless network project that will be delivered by Telent. It will be one of the largest education networks outside of North America, with the capacity to support over 300,000 devices.

Laying the foundations for the wireless network, Telent will also upgrade the university’s core network and infrastructure that connects buildings across multiple campus locations to a carrier-class 100G capacity. 

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.