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Black South West Network launches Bristol tech incubator for minoritised entrepreneurs

11 April 2023
The Business Magazine article image for: Black South West Network launches Bristol tech incubator for minoritised entrepreneurs

Racial justice organisation Black South West Network (BSWN) has collaborated with LV= General Insurance to establish a new incubator in Bristol specifically for Black and Minoritised entrepreneurs.

The BSWN Transformation Hub will help fledgling technology businesses to attract investment with a pitch deck and prototype, providing access to sector experts, coaches and mentoring, workshops, and networks. It is also set to offer co-working office space around Bristol.

This comes after findings from the British Business Bank showed that 30 per cent of Black and Minoritised businesses introduce at least one ‘product innovation’ each year, compared with the average 19 per cent. However, these businesses only received 2 per cent of the £13.2 billion invested in UK startups last year.

Black and Minoritised individuals are also heavily underrepresented in technology leadership roles, occupying just 2.5 per cent of all positions in the country.

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BSWN Director Sado Jirde said: “As the economy recovers from the compound effects of COVID-19, the war in Ukraine, increasing inflation and interest rates, and as tech becomes ever more integral to everything that we do, the BSWN Transformation Hub will play a key role in our work on inclusive growth.

“Our work is creating a context in which everyone can benefit equitably from this economic growth and from their contribution to it.”

The Hub also plans to convene with its partners in order to address inhibitors which continue to drive structural underinvestment in Black and Minoritised tech entrepreneurs.

Venura Perera, Director of Innovation and Development at LV= General Insurance, explained the company’s support for the incubator: “We recognise that diversity is so important, to help ensure innovation in the UK is as successful as it can be.

“We have a growing diverse pool of entrepreneurs, and we need to help create the opportunities and change, for new ventures to be created.

“By working closely with diverse entrepreneurs, we believe we will have the opportunity to support in new and exciting businesses and I am thrilled to be part of this new Hub to provide guidance and advice.”

Read more - SETsquared Bristol relaunches Breakthrough Bursary for minority ethnic tech founders

Born and raised in Berkshire, Dan fell into journalism after completing his bachelor’s degree in English at UCL.

Writing for The Business Magazine and local Biz News sites has given him the opportunity to chat with all manner of small business owners and share their success stories with a wider audience.

Outside of work, Dan enjoys live music, board games and quiz shows, and is making a slow but persistent effort to learn Spanish.

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