Glasgow's Smart Things Accelerator Centre cheers level of female participation in latest cohort

An initiative branded Scotland’s first Internet of Things (IoT) accelerator has heralded the proportion of female-led ventures in its latest cohort amid broader efforts to achieve a better gender balance in the tech sector.

The Glasgow-based Smart Things Accelerator Centre (STAC) has revealed that 50 per cent of companies in its latest cohort have female founders, with the relevant firms comprising Dragon Flai, Happy Leaf, Nano-Lit, Recoil Kneepads, Smplicare, Silver Lion, SenseCity and Synsense.

It comes after the publication in February of Ana Stewart’s Pathways: A New Approach for Women in Entrepreneurship study. STAC chief executive Paul Wilson said: “We know from the Stewart Report and other data that getting more women into entrepreneurship is a no-brainer. It will significantly improve the nation’s economic output, with a large untapped population of women who can help drive our tech industry to the next level, so we’re encouraged to see that STAC companies are proving to be a standard-bearer here. STAC is truly for everyone.

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“We have already seen success and strong outcomes from our first two cohorts, with companies now actively employing in Scotland’s IoT sector, and we’re excited to support and chart the progress of our latest cohort.”

Some of the female founders in STAC's third cohort of IoT companies. Picture: Stewart Attwood.Some of the female founders in STAC's third cohort of IoT companies. Picture: Stewart Attwood.
Some of the female founders in STAC's third cohort of IoT companies. Picture: Stewart Attwood.

Maggie Hicks, co-founder of SynSense, which is developing technology to monitor the health of athletes, said: “The in-depth training and mentoring STAC offers is exciting for us, not only in terms of how much our business will develop, but also how it will support our growth as people and leaders.”

STAC also noted that it has already this year launched STAC Space, its new 250-desk and labs facility at Skypark in Glasgow; STAC Jobs, an IoT recruitment platform in partnership with Jordan Talent Solutions; and STAC Invest, an online platform “showcasing Scotland’s high-potential IoT and smart devices startups to local and international investors”, via a partnership with Murphy Wealth. It added that each initiative is aimed at building a stronger international IoT cluster and ecosystem in Scotland.

Mr Wilson added: “With every partnership we enter, the rationale is always around how the relationship can support our STAC companies and build the IoT ecosystem, and we have more exciting partnerships to announce in the coming weeks and months.”

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