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14-11-19
Industry Analysis

Why the sky’s the limit for tech growth in Norfolk and Suffolk

Written By
Andy Bristow

MIPIM UK Summit 2020, the UK's leading property event, took place in London in October. Attended by over 2,000 property professionals from around the world, the focus this year was on global, economic, societal and technological issues impacting the real estate industry.

Norfolk & Suffolk Unlimited, the recently-launched brand that is promoting our region's businesses internationally, had a visible presence at the event. Attendance at MIPIM was one strand of a broader campaign aimed at attracting new investment to one of the fastest-growing regions in the UK.

With Ipswich and Norwich recently placed at fourth and eighth places respectively in a report forecasting future growth and development from 2016-2026, the time is certainly ripe for promoting the benefits of doing business in Norfolk and Suffolk.

What does economic growth and development mean for our region?

Towns and cities such as Ipswich, Norwich, Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and King’s Lynn are already attracting significant investment due to their good transport links with London and Cambridge, as well as their proximity to international airports and ports such as Felixstowe.

One of MIPIM’s stated aims was to “explore the ever-expanding needs and interests of the built environment, which plays an ever more critical part in the success of our cities, places and people”. That’s a need recognised by Norfolk & Suffolk Unlimited, as evidenced by the wealth of development opportunities for industrial, warehousing and office facilities that exist along the A14 global trade corridor.

The Cambridge Norwich Tech Corridor complements that by providing the potential for the development of industrial, office, science park and residential properties.

Significant private investment has already been secured. Sixteen Enterprise Zones spread across the two counties have taken the initiative and simplified the planning process, offered discounts on business rates, and provided superfast broadband, bringing in a substantial £133 million.

How is the tech industry growing in tandem?

Looking at figures for the East of England as a whole, 89,000 people are employed in digital tech, across 19,090 businesses, with a combined turnover of £8.33 billion.

In addition to a wide spread of digital tech businesses across Norfolk and Suffolk, there are also recognised tech clusters, spearheaded by Suffolk’s Adastral Park. The development incorporates Innovation Martlesham, a group of high-tech ICT companies that provides incubator space to nurture tech companies in the early stages of their growth.

The tech industry is a significant contributor to the region’s economy. Consider the anticipated widespread impact of such things as AI, robotics, big data and the internet of things (IoT), and it's a sector that only looks set to grow.

Digital tech recruitment

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Using our in-depth knowledge of the IT industry, we can pinpoint the skills a candidate needs to match your job and the best way to present that to the market. We can also advise on how to make your company an attractive proposition to potential candidates. To find out how we can help you, don't hesitate to contact us today.