CivTech tie-up with Techscaler set to drive Scotland’s GovTech sector

Panel discussion at last week's CivTech Demo Day

SCOTLAND’S startup support programme, Techscaler, has announced a tie-up with public sector innovation accelerator CivTech, as the global GovTech market grew to around $500 billion in 2022. The joint initiative enables CivTech alumni companies to access Techscaler membership, maximising cross-ecosystem support for GovTech startups, while contributing to the growth of the growing GovTech sector in Scotland.  

Steven Drost, CSO of CodeBase, which runs the Techscaler programme, said: “Innovation is already transforming the delivery of government and public sector-related services to citizens worldwide, the speed of transformation is only going to pick up pace globally, and the Techscaler-CivTech partnership is designed to provide an even stronger support system and playbook in Scotland for our most exciting and ambitious GovTech startups.” 

CivTech’s challenge programme brings entrepreneurial tech innovation and citizen engagement to public procurement, improving public service delivery, generating economic development opportunities and fostering an entrepreneurial mindset within government. For tech founders and executives, CivTech’s 15-week accelerator programme prepares startups for working with and winning business from the public sector. To date, CivTech companies have secured over £67 million of investment, creating over 320 jobs, and in February the Scottish Government announced £46 million of funding for CivTech over the next four years.

Mark Logan, Chief Entrepreneurial Advisor to the Scottish Government, said: ” The CivTech-Techscaler partnership is an important element in our strategy to create a world-class start-up ecosystem here in Scotland.  Connecting the services offered across all of our key start-up ecosystem enabling assets results in a powerful support network for start-ups that is greater than the sum of its parts.  This accelerates both our rate of start-up creation and the subsequent success rate of these businesses.”

Through this partnership, companies participating in CivTech programmes and cohorts, as well as CivTech programme leaders and the organisations sponsoring the challenges themselves, will  be afforded the opportunity to develop skills that will fast-track ideation and growth of innovative solutions for public services. They will also be able to access a variety of Techscaler support and resources, including via  the seven Techscaler regional hubs across Scotland – in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling, Dundee, Aberdeen, Dumfries, and Inverness – as well as tailored mentorship, expert educational courses, and a community network of fellow innovators.

Minister for Small Business, Trade and Innovation, Richard Lochhead, attended the CivTech Demo Day 8 at the Assembly Roxy in Edinburgh last week, where companies from the latest CivTech cohort demonstrated their products to key stakeholders from the public, private, and third sectors, and their potential for wider scale use and commercialisation. The event was also the official launch of CivTech 9, with a new set of challenges launched to the public. 

Minister Richard Lochhead said: “The world-class CivTech programme is enabling the Scottish public sector to work with the most innovative businesses on solving the greatest problems we face. The demonstrations show how successful these ideas can be.”

“This alliance  with Techscaler can help inspire a new generation of entrepreneurs and create a cutting edge network for start-ups.  This is another example of Scotland’s tech ecosystem being strengthened by partnership.  It is exactly the kind of creative thinking we want to encourage through our National Innovation Strategy, which sets out our vision to become one of the most innovative small nations in the world over the next decade.” 

Alumni companies to have come through CivTech include early-stage or scaling start-ups like Amiqus, Trickle, GearedApp, Volunteero, and The Routing Company; established companies including Sweco, AECOM, and Buro Happold; and companies  like Symphonic Software and Homelync where the founders went on to achieve a successful exit.

About Techscaler

Awarded to CodeBase in 2022, Techscaler is the Scottish Government’s tech startup support programme, established to strengthen the country’s tech sector and encourage entrepreneurship, delivering on key priorities outlined in the Scottish Tech Ecosystem Review (STER) report, and in the National Strategy for Economic Transformation (NSET). The programme delivers education, mentorship, and community across Scotland, and offers workspace across seven hubs in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling, Dundee, Aberdeen, Dumfries, and Inverness. Techscaler is delivered by the tech incubator, CodeBase.

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