Edinburgh reinforces top tech hub status as digital jobs soar

One in five jobs currently advertised in Edinburgh is in tech sector. Picture: Contributed
One in five jobs currently advertised in Edinburgh is in tech sector. Picture: Contributed
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Edinburgh has reinforced its status as one of the UK’s leading tech hubs, with digital jobs growth rocketing by three times the national average.

The number of capital jobs in the digital tech sector soared to more than 48,100 in 2017, growing at a rate three times faster than the national average, according to a report released today by entrepreneur network Tech Nation.

It found Edinburgh’s tech sector contributed revenues of nearly £4 billion to the economy last year and now employs almost 60,000 people.

One in five job vacancies currently advertised in Edinburgh is in the tech sector, with the city offering the UK’s highest industry salaries, after London.

The report adds that the difference between cost of living in the two cities enhances Edinburgh’s appeal, while the city’s average tech job pays £42,500, almost 15 per cent more than the average non-tech counterpart.

The Scottish capital is also responsible for creating three of the UK’s tech unicorns: travel comparison site Skyscanner, fantasy sports platform FanDuel and data consultancy group Wood Mackenzie.

In honour of the city’s achievements Tech Nation will today kick off the Bright Tech Series – a national tour aimed at tackling recruitment and skills challenges in the industry – at Edinburgh’s Codebase, the largest tech incubator in the UK.

Tech Nation’s head of insights George Windsor and entrepreneur engagement manager Hazel Gibbens will host the event.

Windsor said: “Edinburgh has established itself as a thriving tech hub not just in Scotland but across the whole of the UK.

“The Tech Nation report reveals it has played a key role in the success of the UK’s booming tech sector, contributing billions into the economy and the city and punching well above its weight to beat UK averages for job creation, salaries and digital tech turnover.”

Vicky Brock, chief executive and founder of Edinburgh online security firm Vistalworks, added: “A supportive network of entrepreneurs and an active investment scene, coupled with world-class universities - and the fact that it’s such a friendly and beautiful part of the world to live in - combine to make [Scotland] a truly unique place to run a digital tech business.”

Recent figures for venture capital investment into the UK tech sector showed that 2019 is on track to become an exceptional year, with Scottish tech firms raising $53 million (£43m) in funding so far.

The UK total currently stands at $6.7bn.

Digital secretary Nicky Morgan said: “Scotland’s tech scene is leading the way in the development of cutting-edge cyber security, clean growth technologies and it has already produced three of the UK’s leading billion dollar tech companies, helping to strengthen the UK’s reputation as Europe’s leading tech hub.”