London has become one of the world’s great digital capitals. The Internet accounts for eight percent of the U.K. economy and has become, in these days of tough public finances, a welcome engine of economic growth.
We believe there is even more potential for entrepreneurs to energize the Internet economy in the U.K., and to help spur growth, today we’re opening Campus London , a seven story facility in the east London neighborhood known as Tech City. Google began as a startup in a garage. We want to empower the next generation of entrepreneurs to be successful by building and supporting a vibrant startup community. Our goal with Campus is to catalyze the startup ecosystem and build Britain’s single largest community of startups under one roof.
The U.K.’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Rt. Hon. George Osborne MP, launched Campus at this morning’s official opening. The Chancellor toured the building, meeting some of the entrepreneurs currently making their home in Campus and learning more about their innovations, ranging from fashion trendsetting websites to personalized London leisure guides. He then flipped the switch on a commemorative graffiti plaque.
Campus is a collaboration between Google and partners Central Working, Tech Hub, Seedcamp and Springboard. It will provide startups with workspace in an energizing environment and will also host daily events for and with the community. We will run a regular speaker series, alongside lectures and programing, as well as provide mentorship and training from local Google teams.
Visitors will have access to a cafe and co-working space, complete with high speed wifi. We welcome members of the startup community: entrepreneurs, investors, developers, designers, lawyers, accountants, etc. and hope that this informal, highly concentrated space will lead to chance meetings and interactions that will generate the ideas and partnerships that will drive new, innovative businesses.
The buzz around Campus from within the startup community has meant that today, on day one, Campus is already at 90% capacity, with more than 100 people on site and an additional 4,500 who have signed up online to visit.
We are looking forward to getting to know the community. East London is emerging as a world-leading entrepreneurial hub, and we’re excited to be a part of it. Take a photo tour of Campus here, and if you’d like to learn more, visit us at www.campuslondon.com.
Let’s fill this town with startups!
(Cross-posted from the European Public Policy blog)