Within the framework of the London Technology Week, Catalonia Trade & Investment organised the event Barcelona's Upcoming Tech Scene: New Horizons in Catalonia. Hosted at Wayra (Telefonica’s incubator), the session brought together 50 participants and presented investment and business opportunities in Catalonia to fast growing British startups and companies.
Nuria Betriu, Director General of Industry for the Government of Catalonia, opened the session and highlighted Catalonia’s attractiveness for technological firms. Subsequently Aleix Valls, CEO of Mobile World Capital Barcelona, provided a well-rounded overview of its growing ecosystem, including the fact that, in 2015, 60% of the investment in Spanish companies went to Barcelona-based start-ups.
The event concluded with a discussion panel moderated by Oscar Martí, Director of Catalonia Trade & Investment in London, with the participation Stephen McCormick (SystemActive), Tracy Reis(Back Office) and venture capitalist James Cameron (Accel Partners). The speakers explained their positive views and impressions of Barcelona and Catalonia as a place to do business and invest.
In this regard, Tracy Reis explained that it was the pool of great talent that brought the company to Barcelona. Reis added that Barcelona is very accessible from the UK as well as being a very desirable location for clients. Stephen McCormick and James Cameron shared her view. The latter insisted on the fact that Barcelona is home to a large ecosystem with highly interesting start-ups in which to invest. The session ended with a networking accompanied by tapas and Catalan wine.
The London Technology Week also received a Catalonia Trade & Investment mission of seven technology-related Catalan start-ups: Finanzarel, Captio, TECH4FIN, Private Network Investments, Capital cell, ECrowd Invest and Social Currencies Management. In addition to individual meetings, the seven start-ups participated in a networking session organised by Greater London Enterprise Ltd, Innovate UK, and the London & Partners public agency, among others. They also visited the start-up accelerator Startupbootcamp FinTech. This trade mission served as a chance for start-ups to learn, first-hand, about one of the most private and alternative investment culture ecosystems worldwide.