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Avon Gorge, Bristol

South West tech firms driving economic recovery

Peter Evans
Authored by Peter Evans
Posted: Tuesday, July 27, 2021 - 12:15

A survey of more than 300 leaders of tech SMEs across the South West has revealed the extent of the sector's resilience through the pandemic and indicated the region 's technology businesses are in a strong position as the economy recovers.

The research, commissioned by Bristol-based Antidote Communications, in conjunction with TechSpark, saw 49% of surveyed tech business leaders report an increase in sales compared to pre-pandemic levels. Some 95% of tech leaders said their business was at least as healthy as it was pre-pandemic – while more than half (53%) said their company was doing better than before the COVID-19 crisis.

The potential for growth for these businesses is clear and 96% are optimistic about the future and have high levels of confidence for the second half of 2021.  

Patrick Fraser, Antidote Communications MD, said: “These findings highlight a tremendous degree of confidence throughout the South West’s digital economy and indicate that the next twelve months may be the most fruitful yet for the region’s tech sector. The pandemic certainly presented challenges, but the tech cluster is now looking more robust than ever. It’s an exciting time for the entire region as this growth looks set to translate into more jobs, prosperity and innovation across the Southwest.”

Ben Shorrock, Managing Director, TechSpark UK, said: “Tech has become central to everyone’s lives during the last 18 months. Although there have been many challenges it’s heartening to see that organisations in the community are flourishing and will be creating more jobs, growth and opportunities across the Southwest.”

The research was conducted by TechSpark. 307 participating tech leaders were spread between founders/owners (104), c-suites (109) and directors/MDs (94). The survey was conducted online and undertaken between 5th and 22nd July 2021. 

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