Weekly Tech Round-up | #13

Here is all the tech news from the past week, sign up for our newsletter to receive this in your inbox every week. We also do a South West tech news update.

Mark Logan appointed to oversee Scottish tech hub plan

Mark Logan, an expert in scaling digital-businesses has been appointed to oversee a programme aimed at establishing Scotland as a world-class technology hub. Logan is a former Skyscanner executive and professor of computing science at the University of Glasgow. He will advise ministers on implementing the recommendations stemming from his independent review of the Scottish tech ecosystem. The programme will be delivered with £6m Scottish Government funding in its first year (2021-2022). This will include a £1m fund to make strategic investments in organisations and activities-such as tech conferences, meet-ups or training programmes- that create the best possible environment for Scottish start-ups to succeed.

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Prince Harry to become chief impact officer at US coaching firm BetterUp

Prince Harry has said in a statement that he was “really excited” about taking on the new role. His exact duties, hours and any payment are not clear. However, Harry has said his goal in his new function would be to “lift up critical dialogues around mental health, build supportive and compassionate communities, and foster an environment for honest and vulnerable conversations”. Prince Harry will not manage employees, but he will spend some time in the company’s San Francisco headquarters once it is safe to do so, BetterUp CEO Alexi Robichaux told the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

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Venture capital ploughs $15bn into UK tech companies in 2020

Venture capital investment into British technology companies hit a new record last year, with $15bn being ploughed into UK tech – $200m higher than in 2019. Investment gathered momentum throughout 2020, reaching a peak last December at $1.9bn despite the pandemic. This means that the UK led Europe for venture capital investment in tech, with Germany and France ranking fifth and sixth for total VC tech investment globally, according to the latest Tech Nation report. The US ($144.3bn) and China ($44.6bn) lead the world when it comes to VC tech investment.

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UK tech jobs declined in 2020, but AI, cloud and robotics skills are on the rise

The number of technology job listings in the UK declined by 57% during the past year, with fewer than 55,000 open roles advertised, according to the latest UK Tech Talent Tracker from Accenture. Despite this, demand for skills in cutting-edge technologies such as cloud, artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics saw a resurgence in many cities across the country. The tracker which analysed LinkedIn’s Professional Network data suggested that the overall decline was driven by a reduced number of job listings for data analytics and cybersecurity professionals, which fell 53% and 54% respectively.

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