Opinion – Now we have an industrial strategy, let’s make it work

Posted On 09 Dec 2017 at 8:00 am

Ideas and innovation are at the heart of the Industrial Strategy White Paper published by the government last week.

A key aim is to turn the best ideas into jobs and growth and improved productivity.

Locally the message was reinforced by Science Minister Jo Johnson – the youngest brother of Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson – who opened the Future Technologies Lab at Sussex University on the day the industrial strategy was published.

He met students and researchers who are working on the technology underpinning progress in robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and the next generation of computer technology.

Turning those ideas into practical – and commercial – reality doesn’t come cheap. The government has promised some money but much more will need to come from other sources. And this is where Shadow Foundr steps in.

Online investment platforms like ours are filling these gaps as we are already linking new and growing businesses with investors from across the country and around the world.

Some of those businesses are making the most of cutting-edge technology, some have strong eco credentials and others bring amazing social benefits.

One of our recent success stories is Aqua Africa which has widened access to clean water – something we take for granted – in a number of countries.

Next week we are eager to see what questions MPs will put to the Business Secretary for the first time since the industrial strategy was published and the autumn budget was announced.

In many respects, it’s the start of a long overdue conversation and one which we very much welcome.

For all the jokes by the Chancellor Philip Hammond, including the one about driverless cars, ministers have recognised the need to steer businesses and investors to a more productive and profitable future, now we all have to make it work.

For more information, visit: www.shadowfoundr.com.

Jason Kluver is the chief operating officer of Shadow Foundr.

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