More than £14.7 million being invested in skills training for region’s booming tech sector
26th October 2023
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The scale of the training being funded by the WMCA was revealed as thousands of delegates gathered for Birmingham Tech Week 2023, the nation’s largest regional tech festival and conference. 


The WMCA skills investment will help underpin a £1 million blueprint, announced yesterday byTechWM, the not-for-profit organisation behind Birmingham Tech Week, to help the region realise its potential as a tech superpower. 


While the West Midlands had the fastest growing regional tech sector in the UK last year the speed of growth has left many companies struggling to find or retain enough staff with the right skills. 


Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and chair of the WMCA, and Martin Ward, the West Midlands Tech commissioner, attended Birmingham Tech Week to detail how the region can realise its digital technology potential by increasing productivity, supporting the growth of new and existing companies and creating a skilled workforce. 


The Mayor said: "Our region’s tech sector is experiencing unprecedented growth, and we’re committed to harnessing this momentum to further nurture the skills base that underpins the long-term success of our tech ecosystem. 


“This nearly £15 million in government investment will help us to create a vibrant landscape that supports tech start-ups, bolsters existing companies, and fosters innovation. 


“Our ambition is to establish the West Midlands as a global tech powerhouse - generating economic opportunities, driving innovation, and ensuring our region plays a pivotal role in the digital revolution in the months and years ahead."  


The WMCA’s digital skills funding was outlined during a Digital Skills Roundtable featuring the Mayor, Paul Scully MP - parliamentary under secretary of state for the department for science, innovation and technology - and several key figures from tech companies including Amazon and Microsoft. 


Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, left, with Yiannis Maos MBE, Chief Executive Officer at TechWM, speaking at the leadership breakfast panel at the launch of Birmingham Tech Week. Photograph: Edwin Ladd/Mr Ladd Media.


Martin Ward, West Midlands Tech Commissioner, said:Birmingham Tech Week is a celebration of our success as a leading regional tech economy and a keyopportunity to discuss practical ways in which as a region we canreach our potentialby creating a strong tech and digital ecosystem 


A crucial ingredient to achieving that is creating an environment that nurtures local talent and empowers the next generation of tech professionals. 


By bringing together joined-up support systems, stimulating funding opportunitiesand developing our tech and digital skills base, the West Midlands can realise its ambition to become a global tech superpower.” 



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