£1m fund launched to support new tech businesses

The Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, which includes the Wakefield district, is offering £1m in funding to encourage digital businesses to relocate to the area.

The city region's tech sector currently employs 102,000 people and is worth £6.6bn to the economy. It is experiencing a period of growth thanks to indigenous businesses and the expansion of companies based in London and overseas.

The new fund, which forms part of a package of business support available through the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, has been designed to help de-risk business expansion by offering grant funding against capital expenditure, such as new equipment including computers and office furniture.

Kersten England, chief executive of Bradford Council and the Leeds City Region lead chief executive for business innovation and growth, said: "The city region has significant strengths across a number of sectors and is gaining an international reputation as a leading centre for digital technology. Over the last 18 months we have seen our strengths within this sector recognised by growing levels of investment from both businesses based in the UK and overseas.

"We believe that this new fund will help the region to continue to attract and develop the best digital businesses. Indigenous businesses will continue to benefit from the LEP products already on offer in order to help us deliver inclusive economic growth."

Businesses in the digital technology sector who have recently chosen the region for investment include Perform Group, Sandstone Technology and Hudl.