Barclays and CodeBase have agreed a new partnership agreement that will see the bank launch its first Eagle Lab in Scotland – a space for businesses and communities to learn about new technologies and boost digital skills.
Located at the CodeBase facility in Edinburgh, and combining the innovative Barclays Eagle Lab model with CodeBase’s incubator success, the lab will support Scotland’s entrepreneurs and fledgling businesses as they look to create, innovate and grow.
Scotland will be the 14th Eagle Lab launched by Barclays, following successful sites in locations including London, Liverpool, Cambridge and Cardiff.
The space is a significant milestone in the development of Barclays’ High Growth & Entrepreneur proposition in Scotland. It will help businesses during the scale-up journey, along with members of the public and local community groups as they seek to improve their digital skills.
The new Eagle Lab will open its doors next month (December 2017), and operate as a ‘Maker Space’ within the existing CodeBase business incubator and co-working facility.
It will provide access to resources including expert mentoring, workshops and equipment to complement CodeBase’s existing incubator – giving Scotland’s start-up and scale-up communities a crucial boost. Technologies such as digital fabrication, 3D printing and laser cutting will be available, providing businesses with access to the tools they need to rapidly produce and test prototypes without having to import from overseas.
Stuart Brown, Head of SME Scotland, Barclays, commented: “Scotland’s entrepreneurs need new investment and support in order to scale-up, and we are equipped to help them grow and complete on a world stage.
“As a partner, CodeBase brings unrivalled expertise in the digital sector, while our Barclays experts are able to provide the mentoring, connections and collaborations required for Scotland’s businesses to flourish – you could say that the two are perfectly paired for this partnership.
“Edinburgh is an exciting digital hub with huge growth potential. Our new Eagle Lab, which forms part of our wider growth strategy in Scotland to help businesses and entrepreneurs to develop, will help stimulate economic growth and create jobs in the local area and across Scotland.”
As the UK’s largest technology incubator, CodeBase Edinburgh is the centre of the tech scene in Scotland’s capital city. It is home to over 100 companies and already offers operator-led scale-up education, flexible office and co-working spaces, mentoring and networking events.
Stephen Coleman, CEO at CodeBase, added: “CodeBase is proud and excited to announce our partnership with Barclays. The bank is building a UK wide network that is primed to help young companies grow and is a partner that brings understanding, experience and dimension to our mission of helping tech start-ups.
“With the lowering of hardware component prices, it is becoming easier to build start-ups that combine hardware and software. This new lab will help those start-ups enormously – companies will not just be able to iterate quickly on software, but also do the same with hardware. The lab is a new and powerful addition to the Edinburgh tech ecosystem and we can’t wait to get started!”
Commenting on the news, Keith Brown MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, said: “This lab will offer a fantastic new base for Scottish businesses to grow, providing access to a range of experts, workshops and advice.
“The Scottish Government is committed to promoting a CAN DO culture of entrepreneurship across all industry sectors. This type of support is crucial to ensure the most talented entrepreneurs, from Scotland and elsewhere, have the best opportunities to develop their ideas and create the successful new companies we need for our economy to continue to grow.”