Codebase charges up North-east tech

Sir Ian Wood, chairman of ONE D&E, with Stephen Coleman of CodeBase. Picture: Firstpix PhotographySir Ian Wood, chairman of ONE D&E, with Stephen Coleman of CodeBase. Picture: Firstpix Photography
Sir Ian Wood, chairman of ONE D&E, with Stephen Coleman of CodeBase. Picture: Firstpix Photography
Codebase, the technology incubator running in Edinburgh and Stirling, has pushed north after striking a new partnership to target digital company start up and growth in Aberdeenshire.

The incubator has teamed up with private sector-led economic development company Opportunity North East (ONE).

The pair are looking to capitalise on the specific opportunities to support growth in the industrial digital space and “create businesses of scale with international aspirations”. Major industry sectors being targeted include oil, gas and energy, food, drink and agriculture and life sciences.

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ONE CodeBase is the incubator’s first move north from its existing locations in Edinburgh and Stirling.

The initiative, led by the ONE Digital & Entrepreneurship (ONE D&E) sector board, which is chaired by Sir Ian Wood, aims to build digital capacity and capability in the North-east as part of a wider regional economic agenda, focused on strengthening and diversifying the economy.

ONE D&E plans to invest up to £1.5 million this year in digital company growth in the region including the creation of a hub for tech business incubation, acceleration and entrepreneurship growth.

Up to £1m will be available every year after that to 2026 to support its digital and entrepreneurship development agenda, with the aim of leveraging match-funding from the private and public sectors.

CodeBase is the UK’s largest early-stage digital technology incubator and is currently home to more than 100 ventures. It works with businesses tackling major technology challenges by bringing together ambitious entrepreneurs, technological talent and top investors, in a creative and collaborative environment.

The ONE CodeBase partnership will host a series of introductory meet-ups in Aberdeen over the coming months in advance of a permanent hub for digital and entrepreneurship activity being ready in the city centre later in the year.

Wood said: “The ONE CodeBase partnership will deliver the specialist support required for digital company creation and growth, provide crucial access to experienced digital entrepreneurs, and increase the number of entrepreneurial businesses with scale and international reach. ONE is investing to drive this agenda at pace.

“Bringing CodeBase’s proven digital incubation expertise and network into the heart of the region is the first step towards building a significant cluster of digital tech companies. Most importantly, the CodeBase team shares our vision for the North-east of Scotland to be a leading player in corporate industrial transformation.”

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Stephen Coleman, chief executive and co-founder at CodeBase, said: “There is a fantastic opportunity to build significant digital businesses in the Aberdeen area, which will have a transformative effect on the economy.

“The wealth of talent in Aberdeen and the unrivalled access to global corporates is a key driver for CodeBase in our quest to create jobs and wealth for the next generation of digital entrepreneurs.”

ONE is industry-led, privately funded, region-specific and focuses on action to achieve business growth and safeguard or create employment.