London: A new UK-India tech hub was inaugurated in London on Monday to promote cross-border technology transfer in early stage businesses between the two countries.
The hub, described as a first-of-its-kind collaboration between a venture capital (VC) fund and a business district, has been set up by UK-based VC fund Pontaq at the new Royal Albert Dock business district in East London.
It aims at promoting bilateral investments in the field of financial technology (fintech), artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain and smart cities.
“Brexit or no Brexit, Indian tech companies will always choose the UK as one of the locations of choice,” said Dr Mohan Kaul, chairman of Pontaq.
“Both India and the UK are among the top five in the world when it comes to tech start-ups and with this new hub, we feel Indian companies can find a lot of traction and space to go global,” he said.
Pontaq, launched as a VC fund focussed on the India-UK corridor last year, has nine companies as part of its portfolio and expects around 40 others to join the ranks over the next three years.
The tech hub, which will serve as Pontaq’s UK headquarters, will give its portfolio of companies access to funding as well as office space and mentoring.
The hub is located at the Royal Albert Dock business district, being set up as part of a 1.7 billion pounds investment plan and phase-wise development in east London.
The hub was inaugurated by UK investment minister Graham Stuart, who hailed London as the world’s “leading financial centre with best-in-class regulation and world-class professional services,” and Indian high commissioner to the UK Ruchi Ghanashyam, who reiterated that Brexit would not dampen the spirit of Indian investments into the UK.